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Philadelphia University History


Due to the poor quality of United States textiles shown at the Centennial Exhibition in 1876, interest grew for the development of some type of formalized vocational training in textile manufacturing. The Philadelphia Textile Manufacturers Association supported this idea. Theodore Search an active member of the Association and a member of the board of trustees of the Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art was a leader in bringing this idea to fruition.


Theodore Search instructs 5 students in textile mill bookkeeping in an evening class. 

First Location: 1709 Chestnut St., Philadelphia


Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art

The new textile school becomes a department of the Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art. 


Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art at 1336 Spring Garden St.

In June, P.M.S.I.A. purchases a new building at 1336 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia. 



The textile department starts day classes, 81 students are enrolled in the textile school.



School of Chemistry & Dyeing

The School of Chemistry & Dyeing is founded. Classes are held at 1346 & 1348 Spring Garden St. 



Enrollment for the entire school stands at 268 students; 11 countries and 9 states are represented. 



More space is needed; negotiations are initiated with the University of Pennsylvania but meet with no success. 



Enrollment for the entire school stands at 300 students. 



Space at 1303-1307 Buttonwood St.

Space is rented at 1303-1307 Buttonwood Street for the Textile School; the Art School remains at 1336 Spring Garden. 


Emanuel Anthony Posselt resigns and E.W. France becomes Director at the Textile School.



PMSIA at Broad & Pine Streets

An offer is made by P.M.S.I.A. to purchase the Pennsylvania Institute of Deaf and Dumb at Broad & Pine Streets, Philadelphia.



The building is purchased and classes meet for the first time on September 10, 1893. Both the Art School and the Textile School move into the new quarters and the building at 1336 is sold.

Enrollment for the entire school stands at 404 students.



Department of Cotton Carding and Spinning

The School of Textiles adds a Department of Wool Carding & Spinning and a Department of Cloth Finishing.

Enrollment for the entire school stands at 590 students.

First Course Catalog for the Textile School

The first separate course catalog for the Textile School is made available. 



Enrollment for the entire school stands at 712 students



Department of Cotton Carding and Spinning

Department of Cotton Carding and Spinning is added.



Worsted Spinning

Course of study in Worsted Spinning is added.

First faculty committee is formed.



First Student Athletic Association

The first student athletic association is formed



An alumni association for the school is founded.



Course in Hosiery Knitting

A course in Hosiery Knitting is added to the curriculum.



First Textile School's Yearbook

The first issue of the Textile School's yearbook, "ANALYSIS", is published.



Student Army Training Corps

Temple University and P.M.S.I.A. establish a Student Army Training Corps.



The Textile School receives $400,000 from the sale of German dyestuffs seized during World War I. 



Theodore C Search

The founder of the school, Theodore C. Search, dies of a heart attack.



The 50th Anniversary of the founding of the Textile School.



First business courses are added to the curriculum.



E.W. France retires; M.E. Heard is appointed Dean



The name of the Textile School is officially changed to the Philadelphia Textile Institute. Authorization is given by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to the school to award college degrees.



M.E. Heart resigns as Dean of P.T.I. Richard S. Cox is appointed as the new Dean.



Martha Jungerman

The first full-time female faculty member is hired by P.T.I. Martha Jungerman taught in the textile department from 1945 to 1958.



Kolb Estate

The Textile Foundation (a fundraising organization completely separate from the Museum School) purchases the Kolb estate in Germantown, for the new campus of P.T.I.



Bertrand W. Hayward is appointed Director of Philadelphia Textile Institute.



Hayward Hall

Hayward Hall

Hesslein Library

Hesslein Library

Construction is started on a new classroom building (eventually Hayward Hall) and the Hesslein Library (will eventually become the bookstore and mail room, demolished 2005) These are the first buildings to be built on the new campus.



The classroom building and library are completed and open with the start of classes at the Germantown campus.

The Board of Trustees of P.T.I decide to separate from the Museum School; the school incorporates as a separate institution. 



First honorary degrees are presented by the Institute: Colonial Millard D. Brown receives a Doctor of Textiles and Alban Eavenson receives a Doctor of Textile Science.



Richard S. Cox resigns as Dean and joins the Textile Foundation as the Executive Secretary. Bertrand W. Hayward is elected President of the Institute. 



The Institute is accredited by the Middle States Association of College and Secondary Schools.

Scholler Hall

The first separate dormitory (Scholler Hall) is completed. 



Althouse Hall

Construction on a new student union building (Althouse Hall) is started.

75th Anniversary

Seventy-fifth Anniversary



On November 14, 1960 the Philadelphia Textile Institute changes its name to the Philadelphia College of Textile and Sciences.



Pastore Library

Construction on the Pastore Library is started (the current Architecture and Design Building).



President's Residence

Roseneath Farms is purchased by the college; the buildings will eventually be destroyed by a fire but the 7 acres of land prove to be invaluable in the future development of the college campus. 

The current residence of the President of the College is purchased from David and Emily Matlack.

Textile's basketball team bets Tennessee at the NCAA tournament and becomes the best college team in the nation.



Lankenau School

PCTS buys the Lankenau School; this purchase adds a number of buildings and 22.5 acres to the school's property holdings.



Archer Hall

Archer Hall

Downs Hall

Downs Hall

Student Center

Student Center (demolished 2006)



Bertrand Hayward retires as President; Lawson A. Pendleton is appointed President.



Gibbs Hall

The residence of Mrs. Elizabeth Gibbs is donated to the college (Gibbs Hall).



Pendleton steps down as President and Donald B. Partridge is appointed President. 

Paley Design Center

Blanche Paley donates the home of her mother, Goldie Paley (Paley Design Center) to PCTS.



First MBA degrees are awarded.




The college purchases the Academy of the Assumption (Ravenhill).



James P. Gallagher becomes the President of the college

Centennial Founding of School

Centennial of the founding of the school.



The first branch campus is opened in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. 



Gutman Library

The new library (Paul J. Gutman Library) is opened; the Pastore Library is renovated and becomes the Architecture and Design Building.



White Corners

PCTS purchases "White Corners" from Penn Charter; this building will be renovated and will house "Admissions."



The first architectural degree is awarded. 



Roxboro House

Roxboro House is purchased by PCTS from Sandi & Jerry Cohen.



Philadelphia University Logo

The name of Philadelphia College of Textiles and Science is changed to Philadelphia University.

Independence Plaza

Independence Plaza apartment complex is acquired by the University. 



Tuttleman Center

In June, the University broke ground on the Tuttleman Center, a new, high-tech classroom building.



Philadelphia University offered its first doctoral program, a Ph.D in Textile Engineering and Science. 

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