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Technology Christian Association records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: AC-0382

Scope and Contents of the Collection

This collection documents the activities of the Technology Christian Association (TCA), a student organization of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).The Technology Christian Association was founded on January 17, 1895, under the auspices of the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA). Material in this collection, spanning 1905 to 1948, comprises three record formats: scrapbooks, ledgers, and logbooks. The collection is arranged chronologically by format.

Scrapbooks, maintained in several volumes, largely document the activities of the organization from 1905 to 1944, though the dates 1934 to 1941 are not included. The scrapbooks primarily contain clippings from MIT’s student newspaper The Tech, but also include clippings from other newspapers, posters, programs, and ephemera. Events documented in the scrapbooks include sponsored lectures and plays, dinners, elections, Freshman Camp activities, and fundraising.

Bound ledgers, spanning 1927 to 1936 and 1938 to 1940, document the finances of the Technology Christian Association. The ledgers primarily document incoming donations, with entries listing the name of the donor with the date and amount received. Monthly expenses also appear in the ledgers, which include information on Tech Cabin construction. Some ledgers also contain information on bank accounts held by the association. Early ledgers in the collection were maintained by Horace S. Ford, MIT’s Bursar and Treasurer of the Technology Christian Association Advisory Board. Additional ledgers are unattributed.

In 1929, the Executive Committee of the Technology Christian Association decided to build a cabin for the use of MIT students. They were granted use of land at Camp Massapoag, a summer boy’s camp of the Cambridge YMCA located in Dunstable, Massachusetts. Construction of the cabin was completed in September 1930. Two log books maintained at the cabin are included in this collection, documenting its use. Dating 1930 to 1934 and 1946 to 1948, the log books contain signatures of guests and a log of activities that occurred at the cabin. Log books include the signatures of visitors and descriptions of activities that took place. Visitors primarily comprised MIT student groups, but also included families, groups from other colleges, and religiously affiliated groups. In addition to written accounts of activities, some entries include drawings, poetry, and clippings. A brief history of the Tech Cabin prefaces the first log.


  • Creation: 1905 - 1948


Access note

This collection is open.

Conditions Governing Use

Access to collections in the Department of Distinctive Collections is not authorization to publish. Please see the MIT Libraries Permissions Policy for permission information. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the donor of the collection or MIT.

Historical Note

The Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) established a branch at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) on January 17, 1895; by 1909 it was reorganized as the Technology Christian Association (TCA). Its goal was to "unite all Christian men of the Institute into one vigorous body, with the purpose of promoting the moral and spiritual welfare of the undergraduate." Their activities included promoting social gatherings, directing MIT students to local churches, and providing service to the Tech House in Roxbury, a home for the care of poor people.

A substantial part of the Technology Christian Association's work focused on new students and the production of a handbook for freshmen to help them adjust to life at MIT. The association published the handbook from 1895 until 1969, when the Institute administration began to publish HoToGAMIT (How to Get Around MIT). In addition to the handbook, the Technology Christian Association began holding annual Freshman Camps in 1926 to give incoming students the opportunity to become acquainted with each other and the Institute’s history and traditions. Upperclassmen, student leaders, administrators, and faculty were involved with these orientation activities. The outings were initially held at Camp Massapoag in Dunstable, Massachusetts. Technology Christian Association would go on to build a cabin at the camp for use of Tech students increasing capacity for the event; construction was completed in September 1930.The Freshman Camp was held on Institute grounds from 1942 to spring 1946. That fall, Freshman Camp activities were relocated to Camp Wonderland in Sharon, Massachusetts. By fall 1949, a committee of students, faculty, and staff assumed responsibility of running the Freshman Camp program. In later years the Technology Christian Association contributed to the MIT community with donations to the United Community Fund and by co-sponsoring the semiannual blood drive with the Red Cross. In 1957 the Technology Christian Association became the Technology Community Association.


1.95 Cubic Feet (3 manuscript boxes, 1 half manuscript box, 2 flat boxes)

Language of Materials



Materials are stored off-site. Advance notice is required for use.

Related Materials

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Technology Christian Association. Handbook of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 57 vols. Boston: Technology Christian Association, 1895-1953. (T171.M42.S678 volumes 18 to 57)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Technology Christian Association. TCA Telegram. Cambridge, MA: Technology Christian Association, 1948-1951. (T171.M42k.T33, incomplete)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Technology Christian Association. The Social Beaver. 16 vols. Cambridge, MA: Technology Christian Association, 1954-1969. (T171.M42.S678 1954-1969)

Additional information about the Technology Christian Association; including member lists, committees, and photographs; can be found in the pages of Technique, MIT's yearbook.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Technique. Boston and Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1887 - . (T171.M4257 1887-)

Processing Information note

Some collection descriptions are based on legacy data and may be incomplete or contain inaccuracies. Description may change pending verification. Please contact the MIT Department of Distinctive Collections if you notice any errors or discrepancies.

Guide to the Records of the Technology Christian Association
Data Entry In Progress
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US