St. Peter's College

Washington Street, Troy, NY

5 story brick building destroyed by landslide during construction in 1859


St. Peter's College

From a Map of Troy 1858, courtesy of New York Public Library



St. Peter's College was the work of Troy's first Catholic priest, Father Peter Havermans, and the Christian Brothers. Father Havermans bought land for the proposed school at the east end of Washington Street at the foot of Mt.Ida and the cornerstone of the building was laid September 19, 1858. Contractors began to erect the 200 foot long, four story high building with two towers. Two stories had been completed when Mount Ida began its slide downhill on the night of March 17, 1859. The earth moved slowly and quietly until it built up enough pressure to burst through the walls of the structure. The presence of the college and its retaining walls was credited with preventing the slide from reaching the tenement houses further down hill and possible casualties. The site was thereafter deemed unsuitable for construction and St. Peter's College remained a dream though it continued to appear on insurance maps for several decades thereafter.

Update Log 

  • February 27, 2019: New photo from Richard Doody
  • February 27, 2019: Added by Richard Doody


  • Richard Doody