East Campus Landscape

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East Campus is Duke's original campus, existing as the campus for Trinity College until a large philanthropic gift from James B. Duke in 1924 led to the changing of its name to Duke University in his honor. The one hundred acre campus became a somewhat isolated campus a site for campus expansion was chosed about a mile away. At that point East Campus became the Women's College and remained that way until 1972, when Duke became a coed institution. In 1995, East Campus became the freshman campus. To learn more about the history of Duke's first campus, visit the Duke Archives online.

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The landscape character of East Campus is very different from that of West Campus, the “university in the forest”, instead evoking the image of a university within a park, with its open lawns and impressive stands of mature trees.  This difference reflects the contrast that exists between the East Campus Georgian architecture and the Collegiate Gothic style of West Campus, which is one of the unique aspects of the Duke campus. Approximately 100 acres in size, East Campus is an important element in the fabric of the Durham community, surrounded by established residential neighborhoods and is within walking distance to the thriving downtown district.

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