The Lost ‘Ninth Ivy’

Today’s eight Ivy League colleges were at one time joined by a ninth. DuPont University in Delaware was founded in 1823 by Episcopal officials with funding from the wealthy DuPont clan. By 1885 it was a leading college for the children of the well-to-do; its oak-and-marble dining hall, designed by Stanford White, was the envy of the other Ivies.

But in 1915, DuPont president Everett Wilson (a first cousin of President Woodrow Wilson) declared that the school would cancel football as a varsity sport, calling it a “diabolical activity created for and by moral reprobates.” Enrollments collapsed the next year, and by 1923 the once-proud college was out of business.

DuPont’s idyllic riverside campus, the “Brainery on the Brandywine,” is today home to the Wilmington Country Club.



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