Cogut Institute for the Humanities

About Andrews House

As of August 2024, Andrews House, located at 13 Brown Street, is home to the Cogut Institute. The building serves as a hub for cross-disciplinary humanities research and learning on campus and enables the institute to advance initiatives at the heart of its mission.

A Collaborative Site for the Humanities

The newly renovated Andrews House provides the Cogut Institute with expanded space for research, learning, and community.

The first floor features a distinctive event space and seminar room for academic and community programming. The entrance hall can be used for receptions and small exhibits and opens onto a green space. Hybrid-ready teaching spaces are available on all four floors, and two meeting rooms can accommodate small functions.

Graduate and faculty fellows in residence at the institute also have access to offices on the second and third floors, as well as a shared kitchen, lounge, and library.

From Private Home to Academic Building

The history of Andrews House is interwoven with Brown’s aspiration to establish itself as a university-college combining large-scale research infrastructure with deep, meaningful engagement of its members.

Brown acquired the property in 1922 to serve as a social center and residence for the faculty. The house had been designed in 1900–1901 by architect Ogden Codman, Jr. as a winter home for the textile magnate Alfred M. Coats. The property was then leased in 1913 by Robert Livingston Beeckman who had used it as the Rhode Island executive mansion while governor from 1915 to 1921.

Governor Beeckman hosted a number of public and political functions in the house, including annual receptions for the state legislature, supreme court, and press. Brown continued this tradition of using the building as a gathering place when it was renovated, refurnished, and inaugurated as the University’s first Faculty Club in March 1923.

In the 1930s, the continued growth of the student population prompted a significant reorganization of campus spaces. The Faculty Club moved to its current location, and the building at 13 Brown Street was redesigned to serve as the University’s Health Services. The new 50-bed infirmary opened in 1939 and was named for Brown’s eighth president, Elisha Benjamin Andrews, who, in the 1890s, had first envisioned Brown as a research university of national and international import.

In 2021, Health Services moved to a new, modern facility: the Brown University Health and Wellness Center. Andrews House then served as a temporary home for the Department of Africana Studies during the renovation of Churchill House in 2022–23. Designed by Goody Clancy, the renovation of Andrews House to become the new home of the Cogut Institute for the Humanities took place in 2023–24.