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Purnell in the '70s


1970: Gate House and Scherman House, both faculty residences, are completed. A new horse stable is built as well. 

Students gather on the front steps of Main for what appears to be a particularly brisk Fox Day.

1971: The construction just doesn't stop! The third and final dorm building, including a spacious lounge, is completed, as well as the two-story Gardner Classroom Building. The former horse barn is converted into the Art Center, designed by art teacher David Chamberlain. With the completion of the Art Center, the previous studio space in the Cottage is converted into two faculty apartments. 


The Gardner Classroom Building under construction. Library in background. 


1972: Replacing Project Week is a new two-week Project Period, allowing students more time to delve into passion projects and extracurricular learning. Concurrently, the first Immersion language trips begin. The New Jersey State Department of Education approves the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools' 10-year accreditation of Purnell. 

The 1972 Student Council pose in a picturesque spot.

1973: The year is marked by some small changes--the Dance Studio is completed on the second floor of the classroom building--and some very large changes too...Lytt and Sis Gould retire and leave Purnell in the capable hands of Head of School Jim Carney and Associate Head Laurie W. G. Carney. 


Jim and Laurie Carney pose for a photo after Jim's performance in a Purnell play, sometime in the late '60s-early '70s. He did not look this dastardly in his day-to-day! (If anyone reading this has a nicer photo of them, please send to

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