Fun Facts About Princeton


  1. Nassau Hall, home to the Office of the President and other senior administrators, served as the nation’s capital for four months and eight days in 1783, when it played host to meetings of the Continental Congress.
  2. The American Whig-Cliosophic Society is the oldest college literary and debating club in the United States. Whig-Clio graduates include two U.S. presidents, two U.S. vice presidents and four U.S. Supreme Court justices.
  3. The use of the word “campus” (Latin for “field”), to mean the grounds of a college, originated at Princeton.
  4. The Princeton University Chapel is the third largest university chapel in the world.
  5. The Carl A. Fields Center for Equality + Cultural Understanding is named after Dr. Carl Fields, the first African American dean at an Ivy League institution.
  6. Charles “Pete” Conrad, a 1953 alumnus, NASA astronaut and the commander of the Apollo 12 mission, took a Princeton flag to the moon in November 1969.
  7. In 1947, Albert Einstein, Nobel Prize-winning physicist and guest lecturer at Princeton, attended the first official Shabbat program sponsored by Princeton Hillel.
  8. On the front lawn of Maclean House, the original president’s house and now home of the University’s alumni office, sit a pair of sycamore trees that were planted to commemorate the repeal of the Stamp Act in 1766. These are the oldest trees on campus and may live for 600 years.
  9. The Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library houses more than 60,000 senior theses, including those of Sonia Sotomayor ’76, Ethan Coen '79, David Duchovny '82, Michelle Obama '85, Maria Ressa '86 and Brooke Shields '87.
  10. Twenty-five thousand alumni, family and friends attend Reunions every year. At Princeton, every class has a reunion every year.
  11. “A Beautiful Mind,” the Academy Award–winning film about the famous Princeton mathematician John Forbes Nash (a Princeton graduate alumnus), was filmed on campus. Some fictitious characters dreamed of or attended Princeton too: Bruce Wayne in the superhero film “Batman Begins”; Carlton Banks in the TV comedy series the “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”; Sam Seaborn in the political serial drama “The West Wing”; Olivia Pope in the ABC drama “Scandal.”
  12. Princeton played in the first intercollegiate football game against Rutgers University in 1869.
  13. In 2022-23 season, the Princeton men’s basketball team finished the year with a 23-9 record, Ivy League regular-season and tournament championships, and the program’s first appearance in the Sweet 16 since the NCAA Tournament expanded to 64 teams in 1985.
  14. ​​​Lake Carnegie, home to the Princeton University men's and women's crew teams, meets Olympics standards and is the training course for Team USA Rowing.
  15. Princeton has won more Ivy League titles than any other member of the League.