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March 25, 2013


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UVA Alum

Re the image: Does anyone know if UA's original layout was based somewhat on Jefferson's Rotunda/Lawn at UVA? It certainly resembles early depictions of UVA, and (until the last sentence of the post) I assumed that's what the image was.

Alfred Brophy

Really good question, to which I don't have a great answer. I know that there were a lot of connections between Alabama and UVA -- Alabama hired a number of faculty educated at UVA. Henry Tutwiler comes to mind in particular -- he was among the first faculty at Alabama, if not the first, and may have had some influence on the architecture. Tutwiler was one of the first people to earn a graduate degree at UVA. (Alabama opened in 1831.) Alabama's Lyceum certainly looks a lot like the Rotunda at UVA, doesn't it?

Here is a link to a photograph of Alabama's Lyceum, which looks even more like UVA's Rotunda than the artist's depiction in the illustration of this post. It certainly was a beautiful building.

Bill Turnier

Off the topic of the original blog post but on the topic of the first comment, I have always been struck by the similarity of the Duke East campus and the UVA Jefferson designed campus. That old Duke campus always struck me as a poor folks' version of the Jefferson campus at UVA. I always wondered if there was some tie or intentional copying on a low cost budget. The new Duke campus with its Gothic design is, of course, what most people are familiar with and bears no similarity to UVA.


The University of Alabama was not an innocent victim of the Civil War; it was a training ground for Confederate officers and militia. It made itself a part of the Confederate war machine that started the war and became a legitimate target for Union reprisals.

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