Harvard Stadium was completed in 1903, with modifications in the 1910s and 1920s. The structure is a designated National Historic Landmark, and is notable for its early use of monolithic reinforced concrete, its simple horseshoe shape, and its role in shaping the sport of American football. It is the oldest college football venue still in use. Construction of the Stadium was funded by the Harvard College class of 1879 and funds from the Athletic Committee. The building was constructed from funds provided by the Athletic Committee and the Class of 1879. "The WGU (World`s Greatest University, as a Globe columnist snidely dubs Harvard) is preparing to launch a major expansion into Allston, across the river from Cambridge. In the older photo, we show an early beachhead of that invasion, the Harvard Stadium of 1902. College football was the sport of the day, and WGU, hard as it is to believe, was a national power. WGU found it wasn`t easy to shoehorn a major sports facility into a crowded town. So the stadium was sited across the river, to be followed in the 1920s by the Harvard Business School. Today, unable to grow in Cambridge in the face of defiant neighborhoods, Harvard hopes to drag other schools – all of which are kicking and screaming – out of the magic ZIP code 02138. The stadium is a remarkable building. The entire exterior is wrapped in an arcade that is one huge chunk of poured-in-place concrete. The largest such structure in the world at the time, the stadium demonstrated the architectural potential of this new material, preceding, by two years, Frank Lloyd Wright`s great Unity Temple in Chicago. The stadium`s horseshoe shape, with classical details, recalled the theaters of ancient Greece and Rome, an association the young scholar-athletes must have enjoyed. A performance of Aeschylus`s Agamemnon, with live horses, took place here in 1906. The stadium`s lead architect was Charles McKim, designer of the Boston Public Library and Symphony Hall. In the foreground of the older photo is a rickety bridge across the Charles, with an operable span in the middle for coal and lumber barges. A bridge has stood in this location since 1663. The new photo, in which the stadium is obscured by more recent buildings, shows the Larz Anderson Bridge of 1913, designed by Edmund Wheelwright, best loved for his Harvard Lampoon building. Both photos were taken from an upper window of the Weld Boathouse of 1907. In its early days, Allston-Brighton was known as Little Cambridge. With Harvard`s anticipated expansion and investment in the community, it will perhaps, in a sense, be so again." -Robert Campbell and Peter Vanderwarker, "CITYSCAPES - Harvard Stadium," Boston Globe, 9 July 2000

Constructed, 1903