Yale University

By TINA BACHETTI | Hartford Courant HOW IT GOT ITS NAME: Founded in 1701 as a place to train ministers, Yale was originally called the Collegiate School. It was renamed in 1718 in honor of Elihu Yale, a native Bostonian who made his fortune in Madras, India, and donated money for construction of the Yale building near the New Haven green. "BATTLE OF THE BOOKS": The school moved from Old Saybrook to New Haven in 1716. When a contingent from the city came to collect about 1,000 books owned by the college, angry Old Saybrook residents attacked the ox carts and reportedly destroyed a bridge on the caravan's path, forcing people to unload the carts and carry the books through the water. The governor's foot guard was called to escort the books out of town; still, several hundred books were missing by the time the carts reached New Haven. Today, Yale's library boasts 12.6 billion bound volumes. STUDENT BODY: Today, Yale's 11,000 students hail from more than 100 countries. The university's many notable alumni include presidents William Howard Taft, Gerald Ford, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush; Supreme Court Justices Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas, and Sonia Sotomayor; composer Cole Porter; authors Sinclair Lewis and Tom Wolfe; and Revolutionary War hero Nathan Hale. SOURCES: yale.edu; The Hartford Courant
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