Eliphalet Nott (1773-1866), it will be recalled, was a Presbyterian Minister who began his long academic career as principal of Cherry Valley Academy from 1796-1798.
However, the “tract of land” given to Columbia College ultimately proved even more valuable, though Columbia never actually moved there. This was the “Elgin Botanical Garden,” occupying some 20 acres between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, from 47th to 51st streets, which had been created by Dr. David Hosack (1769-1835) in 1800 to experiment with medicinal and other useful plants.
By 1806, the Elgin Garden was growing over 2,000 species of plants, and had a large greenhouse and two hothouses. In 1810 the Garden was purchased by New York City for $75,000, considerably less than Dr. Hosack had spent on it with his own money, and in 1814 the city transferred it to Columbia College.
Thereafter the Garden was gradually allowed to decay, but eventually Columbia earned millions of dollars by leasing and eventually selling it in bits and pieces. The money helped made possible Columbia’s eventual transformation into a University at its present location at 110th Street at the end of the 19th century.
1000 Sheep Skins, Well Tanned for Book-Binding, at the Bookstore of H. & E. Phinney, Cooperstown.