Camp Columbia was a 591-acre property in Morris, Connecticut used as a training ground for SEAS students of land surveillance and other disciplines, student athletes, and others. Today it is a state park.
SEAS students began studying the art of surveying land on the property as part of a mandatory summer course beginning in 1885. In 1891 Columbia leased 120 acres of property so as to set up permanent structures for continued use. By 1917 Columbia had expanded its ownership to 591 acres. The property also served as a drill-ground for students intending to apply for officers' commissions in the army during World War I, and later, as an athletics training field. Dwight Eisenhower is said to have gone hunting on the property during his tenure as University President.
After dwindling attendance and changes in the engineering curriculum in the 1960s and 1970s, the University decided to cease use and sell the property in 1983. However, the University would find no takers until 2000 when the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection acquired the land with the help of a National Heritage Trust Fund Grant. It was dedicated as the Camp Columbia State Park and Forest in 2004.
State Park/State Forest
- COLUMBIA'S SURVEYING CAMP; PRACTICAL INSTRUCTION GIVEN NEAR LITCHFIELD, CONN., N.Y. Times, 9 September 1894
- SEAS article about a 2008 museum exhibition of Camp Columbia memorabilia in CT