State University of New York at Potsdam is recognized by SUNY as the oldest unit of all of its 64 campuses. The college traces its roots to the St. Lawrence Academy, founded in Potsdam in 1816, and the campus has an extensive and rich history. The training of future teachers has been a strong emphasis since the academy days, and the Crane School of Music, formally established by Julia E. Crane in 1886, is known as the birthplace of American music education. As the campus expanded degree offerings, the School of Arts and Sciences built a strong program in its own right. SUNY Potsdam’s distinctive cultural traditions, along with athletic and other activities, complete the college’s fascinating story.
Author Bio: Jane M. Subramanian and Virginia Rose Cayey, both graduates of SUNY Potsdam, searched carefully through the many photographs contained in the SUNY Potsdam College Archives and Special Collections for the content of this work, which provides a sense of the college, its people, and its impact in the state and throughout the nation. Subramanian served as a librarian at the college for many years, including as college archivist from 1997 through 2011. Cayey served as a public school music teacher from 1960 to 1993.
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