Old East: The First Building of the First Public University

Two-hundred-and-twenty years ago today, the Board of Trustees of the yet-to-be-opened University of North Carolina contracted with James Patterson, a contractor from Chatham County, to build the university’s first building, Old East. Below is Patterson’s drawing and description of the building to be constructed, from July 19, 1793.


Patterson’s drawing and description of Old East (front and back) from “Old East Interior and Exterior Plan,” 19 July 1793, in the University of North Carolina Papers #40005, University Archives.

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