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Buildings and Grounds Collection

Identifier: PI-022

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of documents pertaining to the buildings on the Pratt Institute campus, the real estate once owned by the Institute, the grounds where the campus stands, and the campus in general. Documents within this collection were compiled from several sources and were originally arranged into three series: About Buildings and Grounds (Series 1), Buildings (Series 2), and Grounds and Features (Series 3). Additions to the collection made in 2019 include Series 4 and additional leases added to series 1.4.. Series 4 is a folder of material transferred from the Pratt Institute Library’s Picture File; materials were not distributed to other folders in order to preserve their provenance.

While many of the folders are labelled as Undated, there may be documents enclosed that would have either misled if the date was recorded. Most undated folders contain only reference information recorded by past librarians on index cards, but some include other documents that are in fact dated.

For information on property prior to purchase by Pratt, see Flat File 5—2 for the Ryerson Property Map from 1849. A photograph of the campus before construction exists in the image files.


  • 1849 - 2017


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to the public.

Conditions Governing Use

For permission to publish, contact the Archivist, Pratt Institute Library.

Biographical / Historical

The first building to be constructed on the Pratt Institute campus in the summer of 1887 was Main Building, which then added to its complex East Building, South Building, and later Memorial Hall. In 1896 the library was constructed. During the 1930s, construction began on the Engineering buildings. In the 1950s, the campus underwent significant changes through slum clearance programs; during this time, the campus as it is known today was pieced together. Several dormitories, such as Dekalb Hall, Willoughby Hall, and the Information Science Center (ISC) buildings were built. In the early 1970s, plans for an Interdisciplinary Resource Center took shape, eventually resulting in the Activities Resource Center.

For a more formal history of the campus, please see An Architectural Stroll Around Pratt (Series 1.2).


6 Linear Feet (13 boxes, 3 loose ledgers, 2 oversize folders)

Language of Materials



The Buildings and Grounds Collection contains records about Pratt Institute's Brooklyn and Manhattan campuses, their buildings and features, and its development over time. The records date from 1849 to 2017 and include real estate documents, mentions of Pratt in the media, and development proposals, among others. Digitized images of Pratt Institute's buildings and grounds are available on the following link: .


The records are arranged in four series, one of which has been further arranged into subseries. The series and subseries arrangement of the records is as follows:

Series 1: About Buildings and Grounds, 1849-circa 2005

1.1: Master Plans and Reports, 1953-circa 2005

1.2: Maps and Guides, 1849-circa 2002

1.3: Blueprints, 1972-2000

1.4: Real Estate Department, 1885-1960

1.5: Miscellaneous, 1890-2002

Series 2: Buildings, 1885-2011

Series 3: Grounds and Features, 1890s-2003

Series 4: "Pratt Campus" Picture File, 1896-1996

Harmful Language Statement

If you encounter any pejorative language (i.e. racist, homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic) or content in the finding aids or within the content of the collection, please send an email to with the relevant details. For more information about how the Pratt Institute Libraries are addressing offensive language and content across its catalogs and databases, please see the Libraries' Harmful Language Statement:

Guide to the Buildings and Grounds Collection
Ian Post; Rebecca Pou and Mary Bakija
2014; 2019
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Repository Details

Part of the Pratt Institute Archives Repository

200 Willoughby Avenue
Brooklyn NY 11205 United States