Princeton University

History

Established by the "New Light" (evangelical) Presbyterians, Princeton was originally intended to train ministers, but this purpose disappeared as higher education gained hold. The college opened at Elizabeth, N.J., under the presidency of Jonathan Dickinson. Its second president was Aaron Burr, the elder, father of Aaron Burr. In 1756 the college moved to Princeton. During the American Revolution, Princeton was occupied by both sides, and the college's buildings were heavily damaged. Under John Witherspoon the college was rebuilt. During the 19th cent. the college expanded, and in 1896 Princeton became a university. Under Woodrow Wilson, Princeton introduced the preceptorial system (1905), a change that led to a greater degree of individualized instruction.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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