Baldwin House, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY


Baldwin House was opened in May 1940 as the school’s infirmary and still remains a health center. From a distance the building belies its age and only upon closer inspection does one see the glass block inserts, casement windows and flat metal roof overhang that identifies its early modernist roots. The building uses a Y-shaped floorplan which may be to provide maximum light and air to the infirm. There is also a projecting window bay at the center of both of the front and rear of the building, featuring a simple brick pattern.

IMG_0715The architects were Faulkner and Kingsbury. In 1938 they also designed the east wing of Palmer House, a cooperative off-campus dormitory, but this building closed in 1947. Various members of the firm also did numerous structures at George Washington University and American University in Washington, D.C. and they were really known as a DC-based firm. However the firm grew partially out of York and Sawyer, noted bank architects who did numerous Victorian-era buildings at Vassar which may be how they got the commission for Baldwin.IMG_0716

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