top of page

Case Institute of Technology

Cleveland Ohio



Case yearbooks, the Differential, are available both through and Kelvin Smith Library at Case Western Reserve University.  That library provided access to the 1925 Case school seal. 

Members of the 1921-22 Skull and Bones Society. (Image from Differential, accessed 1-19-2017






Case Institute is the fourth oldest technology school in the United States and the first to be established west of the Alleghenys.  It began as Case Institute of Applied Science, the result of secret real estate gifts of Leonard Case, Jr.  As a result of another real estate gift—that of Amasa Stone--Case moved to what is now called University Circle in western Cleveland, an adjoining campus to Western Reserve University.  In 1948 the school underwent a name change to Case Institute of Technology.


The 1956 Differential shows a student body of around 1600 men, 286 graduating seniors.  Fields of study included, astronomy, chemical engineering, civil engineering, electrical engineering, engineering administration, drawing engineering, engineering science, mechanical engineering, and metallurgical engineering. 


While the yearbook emphasizes the academic difficulties students encountered, it shows that the Case campus was alive with extracurricular and co-curricular opportunities.  There were no fewer than eleven chapters of national social fraternities active on campus. In addition, there were professional fraternities in each of the branches of engineering.  The campus also sponsored clubs and organizations for student government, publications, music, speech and debate, religious work, service, hobbies and academic interests.  Since many of the organizations sponsored dances and banquets, social opportunities abounded for Case students.


Until 1969 Case and Western Reserve existed side by side as bitter sports rivals and complementary academic programs.  At that date, the two schools formally merged into Case Western Reserve University

Bricks and Mortar

Case began holding classes in the Case Mansion in central Cleveland, using outbuildings for laboratories.  After four years on the Case property, the Institute moved to Euclid Avenue adjoining the campus of Western Reserve.  Main Hall was built in 1885 as the chief classroom and administrative building, and so it remained.  However, starting in 1892 the various Case departments began to acquire separate buildings—Mechanical Lab (1892), Chemical Lab (1892), Electrical Engineering (1895), and Metallurgy and Mining (1905). 


In 1947 the school added Tomlinson Hall as the student center.  Cleveland Memory reports that Tomlinson Hall was the most purchased postcard by Case Institute students. "The Searcher," the figure above the front door, was described by the architect as "ever searching for new things in the world and in science that makes for a better world in which all society may live and prosper."


Case and Western Reserve merged campuses as well as programs.  For example, Tomlinson Hall sits directly across the lawn from Western's Adelbert Hall.



1895 image of Main Hall.  Despite considerable protest, it was razed in 1972. accessed 1-19-2017 (


            Team name: Rough Riders

            Colors: Brown and White


The 1956 Differential shows that Case fielded intercollegiate teams in 10 sports—track, tennis, golf, soccer, football, cross country, basketball, fencing, wrestling and swimming.  The school offered intramural competition in seven sports.


College Football Data Warehouse shows Case playing intercollegiate football from 1887.  In the early years, teams such as Michigan (20 times) and Ohio State (16 times), Notre Dame, Purdue and Syracuse appeared on the Case schedule. In 1902 Case became a charter member of the Ohio Athletic Conference, winning championships in 1902, 1903, 1904, 1905, 1932 and 1941.  In a 10-year period 1902-1911, Case teams compiled a 66-23-7 record. The 1905 team went 9-1-1, losing only to Michigan and tying Ohio State.  After a year (1954) without football, Case joined the President’s Athletic Conference, resuming rivalries with Western Reserve, John Carroll and Wayne State of Michigan.   



Note: Images are used in accordance with their “terms of use” as I understand those terms.  Recopying or republishing these images may be restricted or forbidden.

bottom of page