Cabot House
Cabot House is one of twelve undergraduate residential Houses at Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

. Cabot House derives from the merger in 1970 of South and East House, which took the name South House (also known as "SoHo"), until the name was changed and the House reincorporated in 1984 to honor Harvard benefactors Thomas Cabot
Thomas Dudley Cabot
Thomas Dudley Cabot was an American businessman and philanthropist. He also became U.S. Department of State's Director of Office of International Security Affairs.-Early life:...

 and Virginia Cabot. The house is composed of six buildings surrounding Radcliffe Quadrangle; in order of construction, they are Bertram Hall (1901), Eliot Hall (1906), Whitman Hall (1911), Barnard Hall (1912), Briggs Hall (1923), and Cabot Hall (1937). All six of these structures were originally women-only Radcliffe College
Radcliffe College
Radcliffe College was a women's liberal arts college in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and was the coordinate college for Harvard University. It was also one of the Seven Sisters colleges. Radcliffe College conferred joint Harvard-Radcliffe diplomas beginning in 1963 and a formal merger agreement with...

 dormitories until they were integrated in 1970. Along with Currier House
Currier House
Currier House is one of twelve undergraduate residential Houses of Harvard College, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. Opened in September 1970, it is named after Audrey Bruce Currier, a member of the Radcliffe College Class of 1956 who, along with her husband, was killed in a plane crash in 1967...

 and Pforzheimer House
Pforzheimer House
Pforzheimer House, nicknamed PfoHo , is one of twelve undergraduate residential Houses at Harvard University. It was named in 1995 for Carol K. and Carl H...

, Cabot is part of the Quad
Quadrangle (Harvard)
The Quadrangle at Harvard University, formerly called the Radcliffe Quadrangle or the Harvard Annex dorms, is part of Harvard's undergraduate campus, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. Generally just called the Quad, it is a traditional college quad except that it is not located in, or even...


The current Masters of Cabot House are Rakesh Khurana
Rakesh Khurana
Rakesh Khurana is the Marvin Bower Professor of Leadership Development in organizational behavior at Harvard Business School. He is also the co-Master of Cabot House at Harvard University. Rakesh received his degrees in organizational behavior from Harvard's Ph.D. program in 1998, A.M from Harvard...

 and his wife Stephanie Khurana. Prior Masters include then-Radcliffe President Mary Bunting
Mary Bunting
Mary Ingraham Bunting was an influential American college president; Time profiled her as the magazine's November 3, 1961, cover story. She became Radcliffe College's fifth president in 1960 and was responsible for fully integrating women into Harvard University.-Personal life:Bunting was born...

 and New Republic
The New Republic
The magazine has also published two articles concerning income inequality, largely criticizing conservative economists for their attempts to deny the existence or negative effect increasing income inequality is having on the United States...

publisher Martin Peretz
Martin Peretz
Martin H. "Marty" Peretz , is an American publisher. Formerly an assistant professor at Harvard University, he purchased The New Republic in 1974 and took editorial control soon afterwards. He retained majority ownership until 2002, when he sold a two-thirds stake in the magazine to two financiers...


Famous alumni include Stockard Channing
Stockard Channing
Stockard Channing is an American stage, film and television actress. She is known for her portrayal of First Lady Abbey Bartlet in the NBC television series The West Wing; for playing Betty Rizzo in the film Grease; and for her role as Ouisa Kittredge in the play Six Degrees of Separation and its...

, Lindsay Crouse
Lindsay Crouse
-Early life:Crouse was born in New York City, the daughter of Anna and Russel Crouse, a playwright. Her full name—Lindsay Ann Crouse—is an intentional tribute to the Broadway writing partnership of Lindsay and Crouse. Her father and his writing partner, Howard Lindsay, wrote much of...

, Benazir Bhutto
Benazir Bhutto
Benazir Bhutto was a democratic socialist who served as the 11th Prime Minister of Pakistan in two non-consecutive terms from 1988 until 1990 and 1993 until 1996....

, Rivers Cuomo
Rivers Cuomo
Rivers Cuomo is an American musician, best known as the lead singer, lead guitarist, and principal songwriter of the alternative rock band Weezer. Raised in an Ashram in Connecticut, Cuomo moved to Los Angeles at age 19, where he participated in a number of rock bands before founding Weezer in 1992...

, Greg Daniels
Greg Daniels
Gregory Martin "Greg" Daniels is an American television comedy writer, producer, and director.-Life and career:...

, Ellen Goodman
Ellen Goodman
Ellen Goodman is an American journalist and Pulitzer Prize-winning syndicated columnist.- Career :Goodman worked as a researcher and reporter for Newsweek magazine between 1963 and 1965, and has worked as an associate editor at the Boston Globe since 1967.In 1998, Goodman received the Elijah...

, Soledad O'Brien
Soledad O'Brien
María de la Soledad Teresa O'Brien is an American Broadcast journalist. She is currently the host of the "In America" documentary unit on CNN, and is best known for anchoring the CNN marquee morning newscast American Morning from July 2003 to April 2007, with Miles O'Brien...

, Bonnie Raitt
Bonnie Raitt
Bonnie Lynn Raitt is an American blues singer-songwriter and a renowned slide guitar player. During the 1970s, Raitt released a series of acclaimed roots-influenced albums which incorporated elements of blues, rock, folk and country, but she is perhaps best known for her more commercially...

, Mira Sorvino
Mira Sorvino
Mira Katherine Sorvino is an American actress. She won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Mighty Aphrodite and is also known for her role as Romy White in Romy and Michele's High School Reunion.- Early life :Sorvino was born in Tenafly, New Jersey...

, founder of Sam Adams Brewery Jim Koch, former Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healy and Edward Zwick
Edward Zwick
Edward M. Zwick is an American filmmaker and film producer noted for his epic films about social and racial issues. He has been described as a "throwback to an earlier era, an extremely cerebral director whose movies consistently feature fully rounded characters, difficult moral issues, and plots...

. In 1900, Helen Keller
Helen Keller
Helen Adams Keller was an American author, political activist, and lecturer. She was the first deafblind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree....

 attended South House before it was renamed Cabot House.

Great experiment

In 1970, Harvard began to experiment with co-educational housing. 150 men from the River (including former Dean of Harvard College Benedict Gross
Benedict Gross
Benedict Hyman Gross is an American mathematician, the George Vasmer Leverett Professor of Mathematics at Harvard University and former Dean of Harvard College....

) switched places with 150 women from the Radcliffe Quadrangle. Ten years later the experiment was taken to its logical conclusion, as the last all-male dorm, Straus Hall in Harvard Yard, went co-ed. Today, all Harvard dormitories, including the three Houses of the Quadrangle, house both men and women.

Birth of Cabot House

Beginning before the change to co-education, Radcliffe began to organize the brick buildings of the Radcliffe Quad into residential college
Residential college
A residential college is an organisational pattern for a division of a university that places academic activity in a community setting of students and faculty, usually at a residence and with shared meals, the college having a degree of autonomy and a federated relationship with the overall...

s in the style of Harvard. These Houses were styled North, South, and East, in reference to the cardinal directions of the building clusters.

Cabot House (originally named South House) was formed in 1970 when East House and the original South House were merged. Anna Maria Abernathy held the title of Head of House, and she and her husband Fred served as Cabot’s first House Masters. In 1971, Mary Bunting, President of Radcliffe, began her tenure as House Master.

Bertram Hall, Radcliffe’s first permanent dormitory, was built in 1901 and donated by Mrs. David Pulsifer Kimball in memory of her son. In 1906, Eliot Hall, also donated by Mrs. Kimball, was built in honor of Grace Hopkinson Eliot, wife of Harvard President Charles W. Eliot. Alexander Wadsworth Longfellow, Jr, designed both Bertram and Eliot Halls. Barnard Hall was built in 1912 and named for Augusta Barnard and her husband. Briggs Hall, named for Radcliffe’s second president, LeBaron Russell Briggs, was constructed in 1923, and Cabot Hall, named in honor of Ella Lyman Cabot, member of the Radcliffe Governing Board from 1902 to 1934, followed in 1937. The sixth building, Whitman Hall, was completed in 1911 and named for Sarah Wyman Whitman, the creator of two of the stained glass windows in Memorial Hall and a member of the Radcliffe Governing Board for several years. The Masters’ residence is located at 107 Walker Street. A residential wood-frame house at 103 Walker Street is the Senior Tutor’s residence.

While the outside of the brick dormitories has remained unchanged, renovations to the House 19 years ago and to the dining area in the summer of 2002 provide new facilities and newly configured suites more in line with the "vertical hallway" arrangements of the River dormitories.


The Cabot House shield was adopted when South House became Cabot House, in 1984. The shield is the coat of arms used by the Boston Brahmin Cabots
Cabot family
The Cabot family was part of the Boston Brahmin, also known as the "first families of Boston."-Family origin:The Boston Brahmin Cabot family descended from John Cabot , who immigrated from his birthplace to Salem, Massachusetts in 1700...

 after whom the House is named, though, ironically, the shield is not truly their heraldic achievement; the coat of arms actually belongs to the French family Chabot, to whom the Boston Cabots have no relation.

Cabotoix have a unique affection for their shield, its red fish (freshwater perch, or chabots) in particular. They are the inspiration for the common House cheer, "Go Fish!"—a play on the popular card game. Cabotoix feature their coat of arms on various apparel, including polo shirts, rugby shirts, and hooded sweatshirts. The standard coloration is used, or its inverse.

The House Office also has an antique copy of the Cabot Shield which had been hanging in the dining hall before the renovations. Oddly, this shield's colors are drastically different, although the shield still features the same general design and motto: the field is black and the perch are silver, and the crest is a white scallop shell. While the origin of this scheme is unknown, it is interesting to note that these colors are identical to those of Trumbull College
Trumbull College
Trumbull College is one of twelve undergraduate residential colleges of Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut.The college is named for Jonathan Trumbull, the last governor of the Colony of Connecticut and first governor of the State of Connecticut, serving from 1769 until 1784, and a friend and...

, Cabot's sister college at Yale
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...


The standard arms are described heraldically as follows: field, or, with three chabots, gules.


The Cabot family
Cabot family
The Cabot family was part of the Boston Brahmin, also known as the "first families of Boston."-Family origin:The Boston Brahmin Cabot family descended from John Cabot , who immigrated from his birthplace to Salem, Massachusetts in 1700...

 motto is 'Semper Cor,' meaning 'Always Heart'; this motto is shared by Cabot House.


The House colors, red and gold, much like gryffindor are derived from the House shield; black, one of Radcliffe's colors, is a kind of unofficial color, featured in much House apparel.

Community and traditions

Cabot House, above all, is known for its extremely strong sense of community and camaraderie. The unique features of the House and its unusual traditions in particular contribute to Cabot's well-known esprit de corps.

Dining Hall

Cabot's Dining Hall is very different from those at the River. Unlike other House Dining Halls, Cabot's is not enormous, paneled in mahogany and decorated with oil paintings, marble busts, and medieval tapestries. Some might see this as a comparative deficit, but it is considered one of the House's greatest assets. The dining hall—completed during the 1987 renovations of the Quad, replacing what is now the JCR as the House's cafeteria—is an intimate and bright space. Located beneath the Moors Hall (Pforzheimer House) terrace, the three-tiered room is painted white, its floors carpeted; as the long wall facing the Quad is almost entirely glass, it is bathed in natural light throughout the day. The servery likewise is bright and airy, with knotty pine walls and earthenware tile floors. It is one of the most recently renovated House serveries, completed in 2002.

More than serving merely as the House cafeteria, the Dining Hall is the center of House activity. Aside from being the site of hours-long, social dinners, each evening the Dining Hall fills with students who work together on problem sets and projects for various subjects. During the era in the late 2000s when resident tutors Tom Barnet-Lamb (mathematics and computer science) and Sam Lipoff (physics and chemistry) resided in Cabot House, the Cabot Dining Hall became the go-to spot for science and mathematics students from the entire quad to gather to work on problem sets and engage their tutors in conversations.

Stein Club

Cabot House Stein Club is the Junior Common Room beer-appreciation society to which every member of the Junior Common Room (that is, all House residents) automatically belongs. Every other Thursday evening throughout the school year, Stein Club meets in one of Cabot's six Living Rooms, usually in Briggs or Barnard Hall. At each meeting, students socialize over various types of ale, purchased by the House Committee. Each year, ceramic steins are ordered which bear the House insignia and the name of the owner. Stein Club attendance is very high in Cabot; tutors and the House Master are also known to attend for a beer and fraternization.

Intramural sports

Cabot fields a strong intramural sports squad each year. Cabot Crew, in particular, had an excellent season last year; the Men's A boat took first place among the Houses. Cabot holds the record for most consecutive Straus Cups (awarded to the House with the most intramural points accrued during the school year) with seven wins between 1994 and 2001.

Spring formal

There is an annual Cabot House spring formal, and is one of the classiest events of the school year. Previously known as The Cotillion, it is a black-tie event—white-tie strongly encouraged. In years past, the House Committee took advantage of the Cambridge Queen's Head to hold the first ever Cabot Prom, complete with elected Prom Court, that was announced at the Dutch Auction.

Dutch Auction

To raise money for student events, the House Committee holds a Dutch Auction each spring. A poster is prominently placed in the House dining room where students can offer a service or object to be auctioned. In past years, students have offered to write theme songs for individual House members, to clean rooms, to go on a date, and so on; Cabot alum Rivers Cuomo
Rivers Cuomo
Rivers Cuomo is an American musician, best known as the lead singer, lead guitarist, and principal songwriter of the alternative rock band Weezer. Raised in an Ashram in Connecticut, Cuomo moved to Los Angeles at age 19, where he participated in a number of rock bands before founding Weezer in 1992...

 donated an autographed copy of Weezer
Weezer is an American alternative rock band. The band currently consists of Rivers Cuomo , Patrick Wilson , Brian Bell , and Scott Shriner . The band has changed lineups three times since its formation in 1992...

's new album during his senior year.

The Auctioneer for the Dutch Auction is usually a prominent member of the House or the House Committee. Dutch Auctions are known for being wild events, with heated bidding wars and drunken revelry. The Dutch Auction is also known for the annual Lambing.


The Lambing is an unusual House tradition which takes place each year at the Dutch Auction. The highest bidder for the Lambing gets to name a House member (a Junior) who will be "lambed" at the following year's auction. The student who is lambed is ceremonially covered in oil, then flour, and then pieces of lamb, all in front of the cheering crowd in the House Junior Common Room. The student is not eaten or cooked—merely seasoned deliciously.

Although actual lamb is no longer used at the Lambing, the tradition is carried on in spirit with pies. The House member that is to be "lambed" is instead repeatedly pied by his/her fellow students.


Cabot House has its own ghost story, passed down from one generation to another by each year's House Committee chair.


A newly-adopted tradition popularized by Seinfeld
Seinfeld is an American television sitcom that originally aired on NBC from July 5, 1989, to May 14, 1998, lasting nine seasons, and is now in syndication. It was created by Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld, the latter starring as a fictionalized version of himself...

, Festivus
Festivus is a secular holiday celebrated on December 23 as a way to celebrate the holiday season without participating in its pressures and commercialism. It was created by writer Dan O'Keefe and introduced into popular culture by his son Daniel, a screenwriter for the TV show Seinfeld, as part of...

 is a very popular dinner during the month of December featuring cuisine from a multitude of cultures around the globe.

Rugby shirt

Nearly a third of the House sports the black and white jersey (a nod to the Quad's Radcliffe heritage) with its Cabot insignia. Cabotoix can be spotted easily all over the Harvard campus due to their distinctive apparel, which also includes red sweatshirts and black polo shirts.

Masters, dean, tutors, and staff

The current Cabot House Masters are Stephanie and Rakesh Khurana. Rakesh is a professor at Harvard Business School.

Previous House Masters have included Jay M. Harris, Dean of Undergraduate Education and Wolfson Professor of Jewish Studies; Jim Ware, Frederick Mosteller Professor of Biostatistics; Jurij Striedter, Curt Hugo Reisinger Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures; and Rulan Chao Pian, Professor of Music.

Allston Burr Resident Dean
Allston Burr Senior Tutor
The Allston Burr Resident Dean is an assistant Dean of Harvard College and is also the highest-ranking official, other than the Master, of any of Harvard's twelve undergraduate Houses, responsible for the academic and disciplinary well-being of the House's undergraduates...

Jill Constantino assumed her position in the summer 2009. She is a lecturer in the Anthropology department at Harvard.

Resident Tutors are graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, academicians and/or professionals who live in the House and provide academic, career and general guidance to House residents while undertaking further studies, research and professional ventures. The Resident Tutors at Cabot House are:
Name Field
Welton Blount Law
David Byers Psychology
Justin DuClos Law, Education and Writing
Jennifer DuClos Public Service, Education and Wellness
Maryam Monalisa Gharavi Comparative Literature, Film and Visual Studies
Tyler Goodspeed Economics and History
Richard Johnston English
Devarati Mitra Medicine
Tafadzwa Muguwe Medicine
Dustin Saldarriaga Law
Zirui Song Medicine
Luke Taylor Comparative Literature
Brandon Van Dyck English
Stephen Vider Government
Liz Wood Bio-Physics and Civil and Environmental Engineering

Constituent halls

Cabot House is comprised by the following six halls:
  • Cabot Hall
  • Whitman Hall
  • Briggs Hall
  • Barnard Hall
  • Bertram Hall
  • Eliot Hall

Cabot, Whitman, Briggs and Barnard are connected by a series of tunnels in the basement. The Dining Hall, JCR, and Grand Entry also serve to connect these buildings above ground. Bertram and Eliot Halls, the oldest, are not connected to the rest of the house, but are a short distance away, co-located on the Radcliffe Quadrangle. The Master's Residence and Resident Dean's Residence, 107 and 103 Walker Street, respectively, are located directly across the street from the rest of the house, and are the only such residences in the Harvard House system not to be physically connected to the rest of the house.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.