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January 23, 1967

Harvard's Holden Chapel

JAMA. 1967;199(4):282. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120040092029

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To the Editor:—  The cover photograph of your Nov 21 issue shows the main building of the Fairfield Medical Institution, and the caption reads, "the building is probably the oldest extant medical school structure in this country."Actually, we believe that the oldest-building kudos, if so they may be defined, belong to Holden Chapel in Harvard Yard (Figure). This small structure, built in 1744, served as the home of the Harvard Medical School from 1783 to 1810. First classes of the school were held in the basement of Harvard Hall but soon moved to the chapel (which adjoins the hall) when space demands dictated. Holden Chapel is now the home of the Harvard Glee Club's activities.As a corollary to your article, Dr. Lyman Spalding was the first president of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of the Western District, also in Fairfield, NY. Evidently Fairfield was a popular spot