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Johnston Gate Research Paper

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The Johnston Gate The monumental iron gates still stand today strong today. The gates overall presence dividing the busy streets of Cambridge and the tranquility of Harvard Yard. Just north of Harvard Square stands Johnston gate, for students to enter daily and for city goers and tourists to pass by. Despite its bold and perhaps intimidating appearance, seas of people flood through to catch a glimpse of Harvard Yard and to stop to take a picture with the famous John Harvard Statue. The gate however, has not been present since the institution's founding. Samuel Johnston was a proud member of Harvard’s graduating class of 1855. Several years later, Johnston decided to donate 10,000 dollars to build a gate, leading to the entrance of the famous Harvard Yard. The gate was designed by Charles McKim, an architect and a graduate of Harvard. He designed the gates to have a lavish design, and to be constructed of metals and hand-made red bricks; the bricks…show more content…
People were outraged by the gates appearance due to it’s overdone appearance. The complex design was not seen as tasteful and contradicted the Puritan values that the school was founded upon. The symbolism within the design of the gate still had a cross at the top of the fence representing the Divinity School and Harvard’s Puritan founding. The gate also displays a VERITAS shield on the brick columns that the gate is supported by. Despite the controversial response when first constructed, the gate still stands 126 years later. The gate is seen by many daily and welcomes students and visitors to the Harvard we know today. From the very beginning the Johnston Gate was intended to be Harvard Yard’s main portal. Building the lavish iron gate was a way of making the entrance built to last and also official. The grand entryway has a way of welcoming people to explore the famous sights of the
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