Chartered in 1813, when Maine was still part of Massachusetts, Colby is the 12th-oldest independent liberal arts college in the nation. Since its founding the College has pioneered several important initiatives in higher education.

  • 1833: Students organized the first collegiate anti-slavery society
  • 1871: The first previously all-male New England college to admit women
  • 1975: Participated in the first intercollegiate women’s varsity ice hockey game
  • 1983: The first college to issue e-mail accounts to all students

In April 2013 Colby became one of only four colleges or universities in the country, and the first among our peers, to achieve carbon neutrality.

The past 200 years have seen financial setbacks, several name changes, and the relocation from downtown Waterville to Mayflower Hill, but Colby’s tradition for academic rigor and innovative thinking has never wavered.

Learn more by exploring the interactive timeline of Colby’s history >

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