Private university in New Haven, Conn., a traditional member of the Ivy League. Founded in 1701, it is the third-oldest institution of higher learning in the U.S. Yale's initial curriculum emphasized classical studies and strict adherence to orthodox Puritanism. Medical, divinity, and law schools were added in 1810, 1822, and 1824. The geologist Benjamin Silliman (1779–1864), who taught at Yale from 1802 to 1853, did much to expand the experimental and applied sciences. Beginning in the mid 19th century, schools of architecture, art, drama, forestry, graduate studies, management, music, and nursing were organized. Yale's library, with more than 10 million volumes, is one of the largest in the U.S. Its extensive art galleries were established in 1832. The Peabody Museum of Natural History houses important collections of paleontology, archaeology, and ethnology. Yale is one of the most highly regarded schools in the nation; its graduates have included several U.S. presidents.
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