15 of The Oldest Universities In The US !

This article will give you a closer look at the 15 oldest universities in the United States, emphasizing one year and its location and history. In addition, several of the brilliant personalities from each mentioned College will graduate from there. This will allow other students to get to know each other better if they still have to pick a college.

One of the most vital settlements that a student has to take is to choose a college. It sets the tone for your University, as well as your future profession. Therefore, students evaluate a broad number of characteristics before they create their shortlist of future colleges. Here, Harvard University, established in 1636, is also one of the world’s most prominent, currently ranked third in the Q.S. World University Rankings. Then following the order with The College of William and Mary (1693) and St. John’s College (1696).

This list is based on the research strength of the quality of the programs it provides, the number of successful professionals generated over the years, and it also gets famous by their name. These universities take years to develop above a great reputation. 

So, let’s round up to the 15 of the Oldest Universities in the U.S.!

15. Salem College

Founder:Winston-Salem, North Carolina, U.S.

Salem College is gratified to be the oldest liberal women’s College in the United States. The Moravians of Salem established a girls’ College in 1772, which dates back to April 1772. The school was first called the Little Girls’ School, and Sister Elisabeth Oesterlein served as the first teacher. It was into an internship in 1802, and in 1866 its name was converted into Salem Female Academy. The school started awarding university diplomas in 1890. In 1907, the institution adopted the name Salem Academy and College.

Although categorized as a female college, it allows males aged 23 and above to study and graduate degrees. Salem College accredits the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Salem College

14. College of Charleston

Founder:Several prominent South Carolinians
Founder:Charleston, South Carolina, U.S.
Founder:$12,518 (In-state), $32,848 (Out-of-state)

Charleston College is the oldest University in South Carolina, established in 1770 and founded in 1785. First, it was named College Charleston. In 1836 Charleston became the first municipal college in the USA to take over the allowed until 1928. In 1968, African Americans were also admitted.

The American Civil War has seriously hit the College of Charleston, an earthquake in 1886 and a storm in 1989. In 1970, the College grew affiliated with the South Carolina State College System.  The Charleston College on undergraduates and graduate programs were supplied by the University of Charleston, set up in 1992.

College of Charleston

13. Dartmouth College

Founder:Eleazar Wheelock
Founder:Hanover, New Hampshire, U.S.

As an Ivy League institution, Dartmouth College persists unique as it is the only one that still has the term “college” appended to its name. To prepare the Native Americans to become Christian missionaries, Eleazar Wheelock created Dartmouth College. The President of the trustees sponsored the school in honor of the second earl, William Legge of Dartmouth. 

Despite being more miniature than other Ivy League universities, Dartmouth is a miniature yet innovative old art college. It focuses mostly on undergraduates and maintains small classrooms to create intimate relationships between students and teachers. Dartmouth College is also sanctioned for the quality of its professional schools.

Dartmouth College

12. Rutgers University

Founder:Ministers of the Dutch Reformed Church
Founder:Hanover, New Hampshire, U.S.

Rutgers University is a public land-based research university based in New Brunswick, New Jersey, formally known as Rutgers State University in New Jersey. Originally known as Queen’s College, Rutgers was chartered in 1766. For the most part, Rutgers was a private liberal arts school and developed, after being named the State University of New Jersey by New Jersey Lawgiving in 1945 and 1956, to become a coeducational public research university. 

Rutgers is also the state-owned University, the University for sea subsidies, and the state’s largest University. Nine thousand faculty members offer 175 academic departments to over 45,000 undergraduate students and more than 20,000 graduate and professional students.

11. Brown University

Founder:Baptist Church Association support
Founder:Providence, Rhode Island, U.S.

Next on the List is added Ivy League university. It was first established in 1764 as Rhode Island College and served as a Baptist institution for Warren, R.I. In 1804 it began to use the name Brown University to commemorate Nicholas Brown, its patron. Francis Wayland, who was President of the from 1827 until 1855, the curriculum by introducing contemporary languages and increasing choice. 

In 1971, when the University united with Pembroke College, the Female College Deputy of Brown University, the University became entirely co-educational. Brown University now consists of undergraduate, graduate, and medical schools. The criteria for graduates is unorthodox and calls for them to build their interdisciplinary curriculum that can be founded in one of more than 70 academic levels in the University.

Brown University

10. Columbia University

Founder:Royal charter of George II of Great Britain
Founder:New York City, New York, U.S.

Columbia University, located in New York City, was a king’s College under the Royal Georges II Charter of Great Britain in 1754. The founding parents of the United States reflect his colonial heritage, which this year was 18th in the globe. 

Columbia is of America’s most distinguished research colleges, the popular Pulitzer Prize, the sixth-largest University in anatomy and physiology, and ranks in particular in arts and humanities (ninth in the world).

Columbia University

9. Washington and Lee University

Founder:Scotch-Irish Presbyterian pioneers
Founder:Lexington, Virginia, U.S.

The University of Washington and Lee is a privately-owned liberal arts University in Lexington. The University received $20000 in 1796, which was the greatest contribution ever granted to education in the United States, as its first sponsor. Previously called both Augusta Academy and Liberty Hall. General Robert Lee gives the present title to the University. 

He was the University President from 1865 up to his death in 1870 and was the first to receive the last name. So, it ranked number nine on this List of Top oldest Universities of America.

Washington and Lee University

8. Princeton University

Founder:New Light Presbyterians
Founder:Princeton, New Jersey, U.S.

Princeton University, originally the New Jersey College for the training of ministers, has several landmarks in its long history, including its earliest Nassau Hall in 1756. Nassau Hall was technically the temporary capital of the U.S. for four months in 1783 when the Continental Congress met there.

Princeton is currently ranked 13th globally, seventh in the subject area of arts and humanities, and fourth for mathematics. 

Princeton University

7. University of Delaware

Founder:Francis Alison
Founder:Newark, Delaware, U.S.
Founder:$6,365 (In-state), $17,080 (Out-of-state)

Delaware University in Newark was first as ‘Free School’ and changed its name and location multiple times. One of the Artificial Intelligence universities University of Pennsylvania refused a charter to avoid rivalries. It is not colonial, as it was not until 1833 after the Americans formed. 

However, U.D. still has a long tradition of high-quality teaching and is now a joint 491st place in the total Q.S. World University Rankings.

6. Moravian College

Founder:Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, U.S.

The little Moravian College is the next of our oldest universities in the U.S. Bethlehem in Pennsylvania is founded in 1742 by 16-year-old Countess Benigna von Zinzendorf, who set up the Bethlehem Female Seminary. It established such a reputation that, personally, George Washington appealed to the CEO for acceptance of two of his grandsons. 

As the school became known, the Moravian Female Seminary was chartered to allow baccalaureate degrees in 1863, and in 1913 converted Moravian Seminary and College for Women, before ultimately becoming coeducational when the colleges for the two genders merged in 1954.

Moravian College

5. University of Pennsylvania

Established:1740 (chartered in 1755)
Founder:Benjamin Franklin
Founder:Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US

Benjamin Franklin was the first in the United States to provide undergraduate and postgraduate education at the University of Pennsylvania. Also, one of the premier colleges in the nation to offer in many fields, Penn became the first University in America to establish a medical college in 1765.

Penn is 15th overall globally and is renowned for being rated fifth globally in management and law courses. 

University Of Pennsylvania

4. Yale University

Founder:Elihu Yale
Founder:New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.

Next on our list of the dearest universities in the US, Yale University is currently ranked 17th globally and was originally founded as ‘Collegiate School.’ In 1718, it rebaptized Yale as a gift by the British East India Company’s governor Elihu Yale. In the same year, Yale moved from New Haven to Connecticut, formerly Clinton, Saybrook, and Wethersfield.

In 1777, the school started science programs, and in 1861 Yale became America’s first University to be awarded a Ph.D. Yale was created to teach ministers in theology and holy languages. It now holds 4th place in the world in legal studies and 6th place in arts and humanities.

Yale University

3. St. John’s College

Founder:Maryland colony
Founder:Annapolis, Maryland, U.S.

St John’s College (SJC) is a liberal arts college originally founded as King William’s School, the Maryland colony’s first ‘free’ school (free in this context meaning to free students through education).

In 1784, it got its current name, and today it has two campuses, one at Annapolis, Maryland’s capital city, and one in the capital of New Mexico, Santa Fe. While the Q.S. World University Rankings do not include this College, according to U.S. News & World Report, it has been involved in the top 100 Liberal Arts Institutions.

St. John's College

2. The College of William and Mary

Founder:King William III and Queen Mary III
Founder:Williamsburg, Virginia, U.S.
Founder:$17,434 (In-state), $40,089 (Out-of-state)

College of William and Mary, the most magnificent College in South American and the first higher education school in the U.S. to establish an Ehrenkennet Code of Conduct for students, was named for the British co-monarchs who reigned time and awarded the University by its Royal Charter.

It’s world-ranked 601-650 in arts and humanities, and the school is in the world’s top 450. It has educated three U.S. Presidents, including Thomas Jefferson.

The College of William and Mary

1. Harvard University

Established:1636 (chartered in 1650)
Founder:Great and General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony
Founder:Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.

Harvard University, known as New College, is located in Massachusetts. The first beneficial, John Harvard, who left half his and the 320-volume book of his scholar to University, was changed to Harvard College. It has one of the best business schools in the world.

Harvard is one of the world’s leading universities and ranks third in the Q.S. World University, an older university in America. It ranks first globally for biological sciences and medicine and second for the arts and humanities—World University Rankings by Subject.

Harvard University


Long before the U.S. was granted freedom in 1776, all these colleges were established. These institutions have shown how the country has been into professionals and academics, who have finally changed their respective disciplines. Anyone may benefit from the high-quality education they need, which may assist them in establishing themselves for the future from any of the universities mentioned above.

Sophia Wadke
Sophia Wadke
I am Shopia, a movie enthusiastic and I read lot of books, mostly of science fiction, thrillers and biography. Content writing is just my profession but my passion too.

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