Former Lincoln College

On literally the exact day I visited the former MacMurray College in Jacksonville, a victim of declining enrollment and financial troubles, Lincoln College in Lincoln, Illinois announced it would be closing, as well.

It’s a similar story as befalls others small colleges, though there’s a criminal twist to Lincoln College: it was a victim of a malicious cyber attack that seriously damaged its enrollment efforts. Though I must admit I have to wonder how stable the college was if one cyber attack can be fatal…or was it…?

The centerpiece of the university is a wonderful if a tad bit awkward Italianate building which unlike many Midwestern educational centers, survived fires and other hazards. Aesthetically, the original architect made the windows too small in proportion to the massing of the building.

But I love the roofline with its brackets and cupola.

The cupola is wood, with shingles including fish scales. It is in need of maintenance, no doubt long deferred.

Of course, the campus wouldn’t be complete without some mid-century buildings, added after World War II, with some nice leaky flat roofs. I don’t know how much the closure of the college is affecting the economy of the city; I suppose time will tell.

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