PAST VETERINARY COLLEGES in UNITED STATES and CANADA

The first veterinary colleges in the United States and Canada were established after 1850. Many were private, proprietary colleges located in cities for the primary purpose of producing veterinarians to care for urban working horses. For various reasons, all of the early private schools were closed by 1927. Nearly all of the US veterinary colleges currently in existence began on campuses of land-grant universities. 

List of "Former Veterinary Medical Institutions in the United States" from AVMA Membership Directory and Resource Manual (2008)

History and Background of Some Past Veterinary Colleges

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VETERINARY COLLLEGE OF PHILADELPHIA
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
(1852-1866)

Philadelphia native Robert Jennings (d. 1893) gave lectures on veterinary medicine to students at several medical colleges in that city from 1846 to 1850. In 1852 along with two medical professors, he was the principal organizer of what is considered to be the first veterinary college in the United States. Few students enrolled and the number of graduates is unknown. It closed in 1866. 

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BOSTON VETERINARY INSTITUTE
Boston, Massachusetts
(1855-1860)

The Boston Veterinary Institute of Boston, Massachusetts was incorporated in May, 1855 by several prominent veterinarians who served as faculty members. Among them was Dr. George H. Dadd who was dean and professor of anatomy and physiology. By December 1857, after just 30 months of operation, the school had produced only 6 graduates. Dr. Dadd maintained the school during its last years when it was forced to suspend operations around 1860.   

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NEW YORK COLLEGE OF VETERINARY SURGEONS
New York, New York
(1857-1899)

The New York College of Veterinary Surgeons was organized in 1857 by John Busteed, MD and others. An imposing structure was erected at 75-77 West 23rd Street in New York City. Due to lack of students, the school was forced to close for the first time during the 1859-1860 session. It would be re-organized several times over the years, including in 1864 when Alexandre Francois Liautard joined the faculty and again in 1970. When the entire faculty resigned in 1875. Dr. Liautard lead the way in organizing a new American Veterinary College. Eventually, in 1899, it would merge with the American Veterinary College to form the New York-American Veterinary College. In total, the NYCVS had granted 292 V.S. (Veterinary Surgeon) degrees. 

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MONTREAL VETERINARY COLLEGE
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
(1866-1889)

Upon recommendation of McGill University and the Board of Agriculture of Quebec, the Montreal Veterinary College was founded in Montreal by Duncan McEachran, MRCVS in 1866. He served as dean through its transition to becoming the formal Faculty of Comparative Medicine and Veterinary Science of McGill University 1889 in operation until 1903. 

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AMERICAN VETERINARY COLLEGE
New York, New York
(1875-1899)

 

Through the leadership and efforts of Alexandre Liautard, MD, VS (1835-1918), a French veterinarian, the American Veterinary College was founded in April 1875 in New York City. By the time the school amalgamated with a reorganized New York College of Veterinary Surgeons to form the New York University-American Veterinary College in 1899, about 629 D.V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degrees had been awarded. 

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COLUMBIA VETERINARY COLLEGE
New York, New York
(1877-1884)

 

Located in New York City, the Columbia Veterinary College was newly organized in 1878 largely with many faculty and students from the previous New York College of Veterinary Surgeons. When the school abruptly closed in 1884, its students matriculated with the American Veterinary College. In its nearly 6 years of operation, the Columbia Veterinary College awarded D.V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degrees to 80 graduates. 

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NORTHWESTERN
VETERINARY COLLEGE
Minneapolis, Minnesota
(1881-1890)

 

The Northwestern Veterinary College was organized during 1881 through the efforts of C.C. Lyford, MD, VS, a graduate of the Montreal  Veterinary College, with the aid of some associates in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in connection with one of the medical schools of that city. The school remained in operation until 1890 when instruction was discontinued owing to a disastrous fire which destroyed the buildings. This school granted the D.V.M.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery) degree and had but few graduates. 

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HARVARD UNIVERSITY VETERINARY DEPARTMENT
Cambridge, Massachusetts
(1882-1902)

 

The Veterinary Department was established at Harvard University on April 1, 1882. British veterinarian Charles P. Lyman served as dean and professor of veterinary medicine. This school  maintained a high standard of instruction from its beginning until closing in 1901. It conferred the M.D.V. (Medical Doctor Veterinary) degree on 128 graduates.  

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CHICAGO VETERINARY COLLEGE
Chicago, Illinois
(1883-1920)

 

The Chicago Veterinary College was founded in 1883 by Richard J. Withers, MD, VS, Joseph Hughes, MRCVS, and Austin H. Baker, VS. Of all the 26 early private American veterinary colleges, this institution graduated the largest number of veterinarians by awarding 2,320 D.V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degrees over its 37 year existence.  

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SCHOOL OF VETERINARY MEDICINE OF MONTREAL
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
(1885-1894)

 

The School of Veterinary Medicine of Montreal was organized in 1885 by Orphyr Bruneau and Victor T. Daubigny, who had taught the French classes at the Montreal Veterinary College. Sometimes referred to  as the Bruneau School, it was loosely affiliated with Victoria University  of Cobourg, Ontario and offered instruction exclusively for French-speaking students. In 1894 it was absorbed by the French Veterinary School of Montreal 

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VETERINARY SCHOOL OF QUEBEC
Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
(1886-1894)

 

The Veterinary School of Quebec was organized in 1886 by J.A. Couture (often referred to as the Couture School) in the City of Quebec. It was affiliated with Laval University. Failing to attract many students, it was absorbed by the French Veterinary School in Montreal in 1894. 

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UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA DIVISION OF VETERINARY MEDICINE
Columbia, South Carolina
(1888-1891)

 

When the 2nd University of South Carolina was organized in 1888, William B. Niles, DVM was hired as professor in the Agricultural and Mechanical College's veterinary department. Extended instruction resulted in only 1 student, Thomas Jefferson Kinard, receiving a DVM degree in 1891. A college of veterinary medicine never materialized for various reasons. 

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FACULTY OF COMPARATIVE MEDICINE AND VETERINARY SCIENCE, McGILL UNIVERSITY
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
(1889-1903)

 

Although loosely affiliated since 1866, the Montreal Veterinary College was renamed the Faculty of Comparative Medicine and Veterinary Science when it was formally taken over by McGill University in January 1889. Early in his medical career, Sir William Osler served on its faculty as a young professor and had suggest the name change. The faculty was abolished in 1903. A total of 312 students had received D.V.S. degrees since 1866, about one-half of whom came from, or went to. the United States. 

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BALTIMORE UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF VETERINARY SCIENCE
Baltimore, Maryland
(1889-1891)

 

The School of Veterinary Science at Baltimore University opened its doors on October 1, 1889 in Baltimore, Maryland. Most of the veterinarians on the faculty were also employed of the State of Maryland and the U.S. Bureau of Animal Industry. This school apparently closed its doors during the summer of 1891 and only had 1 graduate.  

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DETROIT COLLEGE OF MEDICINE VETERINARY DEPARTMENT
Detroit, Michigan
(1890-1899)

 

The Veterinary Department of the Detroit College of Medicine was organized at Detroit, Michigan during 1890. Up to the time operations were suspended in July, 1899, the school had only 35 graduates, who were granted the D.V.S. degree. It is of interest to note that Dr. E.A.A. Grange, who later became principal  of the Ontario Veterinary College, was principal of this school during 1897 

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IOWA VETERINARY COLLEGE
Des Moines, Iowa
(1890-1894)

 

The Iowa Veterinary College was a private school organized at Des Moines, Iowa during 1890 and must not be confused with the Veterinary College at Iowa State University. It was short lived, closing its door during the fall of 1894, for lack of support. The D.V.Sc. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degree was conferred on a total of 13 graduates.  

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UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA. DEPARTMENT OF VETERINARY SCIENCE
St. Paul, Minnesota
(1890-1892)

 

Subsequent to being appointed Professor of Veterinary Science in the College of Agriculture at the University of Minnesota in January 1889, Olaf Schwarzkopf established a 3-year course of study in veterinary medicine. In 1891, 3 students had enrolled in a program leading to a D.V.M. degree, but for financial and political reasons, the curriculum was discontinued several years later without producing any graduates.    

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KANSAS CITY VETERINARY COLLEGE
Kansas City, Missouri
(1891-1918)

 

The Kansas City Veterinary College (KCVC) was the second largest of the early mostly private institutions in the United States with respect to the number of graduates. The KCVC had 1857 graduates over a span of 26 years, beginning with a class of three students in 1892 and 159 students in the last class of 1918. 

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OHIO VETERINARY COLLEGE
Cincinnati, Ohio
(1891-1896)

 

The Ohio (or Cincinnati) Veterinary College was a private institution organized at Cincinnati, Ohio during 1891. Its dean was Dr. A.H. King, a physician. Up to the time the school closed during 1896, a total of 67 graduate veterinarians had been produced. 

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INDIANA VETERINARY COLLEGE
Indianapolis, Indiana
(1892-1924)

 

The Indiana Veterinary College was founded by Dr. Louis A. Greiner (1854-1916) in 1892. During its "honorable" existence of more than 30 years until 1924, this private college in Indianapolis would grant V.S. degrees to 879 veterinarians. 

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McKILLIP VETERINARY COLLEGE
Chicago, Illinois
(1894-1920)

 

The McKillip Veterinary College was chartered in Chicago in 1892 principally through the efforts of Matthew Harrison McKillip, MD, VS, an 1876 Ontario Veterinary College graduate. About 1,232 graduates would receive M.D.V. (Medical Doctor Veterinary) degrees before the college suspended operation in 1920 after 28 years. 

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NATIONAL VETERINARY COLLEGE
Washington, D.C.
(1892-1896)

 

The National Veterinary College was a private veterinary school organized at Washington, D.C. in 1892. The faculty was largely composed on veterinarians from the U.S. Bureau of Animal Industry. BAI chief Dr. Daniel E. Salmon was founder and president until the school merged with the Columbian University to become a department of that university in 1896. The combined course of study would grant V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degrees to about 50 graduates before closing in 1898.  

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UNITED STATES COLLEGE OF VETERINARY SURGEONS
Washington, D.C.
(1894-1927)

 

Charles Barnwell Robinson, VS (1859-1921) founded the United States College of Veterinary Surgeons in Washington, DC at 222 C Street NW in 1894. During its 33 years of successful operation, this private school would grant D.V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degrees to 419 veterinarians. When the school closed its doors in June 1927, it was the last of the early private veterinary schools in the United States.  

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UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA VETERINARY DEPARTMENT
San Francisco, California
(1895-1899)

 

The Veterinary Department of the University of California was established in 1895 as one of the four medical departments at San Francisco. Despite its high academic standards, only 10 graduates were awarded D.V.S. degrees before the school was closed in 1899 due to lack of funding and few matriculating students.  

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QUEENS UNIVERSITY VETERINARY SCHOOL
Kingston, Ontario, Canada
(1895-1899)

 

In 1895, the Veterinary Department of Queens College at Kingston, Ontario was organized. When its doors were closed 4 years later in 1899, degrees had been awarded to 9 graduates.  

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COLUMBIAN UNIVERSITY VETERINARY DEPARTMENT
Washington, D.C.
(1896-1898)

 

In 1896, the National Veterinary College was absorbed into Columbian University in Washington, D.C. (later  George  Washington University) as a veterinary department. The course of study was discontinued in 1898, but would later re-emerge as the George Washington University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1908.  

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GRAND RAPIDS MEDICAL COLLEGE, VETERINARY DEPARTMENT
Grand Rapids, Michigan
(1897-1918)

 

This department of the Grand Rapids Medical College was organized in 1897 by Dr. Leonard L. Conkey and Dr. Hugh Rutherford who had been previously connected with the Detroit Veterinary College. By the time it closed in 1918, D.V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degrees had been awarded to about 572 graduates. 

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WESTERN VETERINARY COLLEGE
Kansas City, Missouri
(1897-1908)

 

Western Veterinary College was organized during 1897 at Kansas City, Missouri by J. H. Wattles, Sr.,  MD, DVS, an 1887 graduate of the Chicago Veterinary College. He had earlier founded the Kansas City Veterinary College in 1891, but after a few years he severed his connections with that school. When this second Kansas City school closed in 1908, it had had a total of 178 graduates.  

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NEW YORK UNIVERSITY-AMERICAN VETERINARY COLLEGE
New York, New York
(1899-1913)

 

In 1899. the New York-American Veterinary College was organized by an amalgamation of the New York College of Veterinary Surgeons and the American Veterinary College in New York City. AVC's dean Dr. Alexandre Liautard continued as dean until 1908 when he was replaced by Dr.  William J. Coates. On September 24, 1913, the school became a  State institution, known as the New York State Veterinary College at New York University. It granted D.V. S. (Doctor of Veterinary Surgery) degrees to 180 graduates.    

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SAN FRANCISCO VETERINARY COLLEGE
San Francisco, California
(1899-1918)

 

The San Francisco Veterinary College, located at San Francisco, California, operated as a private institution organized by Dr. Edward J. Creeley in 1899. When it closed in 1918, it had a total of 332 graduates. This school performed a duty by supplying California and adjacent states with 330 graduate veterinarians over its nearly 20 years of existence.  

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CINCINNATI VETERINARY COLLEGE
Cincinnati, Ohio
(1900-1920)

 

The Cincinnati Veterinary College was incorporated under the laws of the State of Ohio in 1900. This school should not be confused with the Cincinnati (or Ohio) Veterinary College, a different short-lived school that ceased operation in 1893. The Cincinnati Veterinary College was a private institution which produced 397 graduates by the time it closed in 1920.  

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UNIVERSITY VETERINARY COLLEGE
Kansas City, Missouri
(1902-1906)

 

The University Veterinary College was incorporated on August 6, 1902 at Kansas City, Missouri. Dr. Gorge W. Werner served as its president. By the time the school closed 4 years later in 1906, it had graduated 53 veterinarians.  

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ST. JOSEPH VETERINARY COLLEGE
St. Joseph, Missouri (1905-1923)

 

The St. Joseph Veterinary College was founded in Missouri in 1905. Due to noble efforts by its president Dr. R.C. Moore, it would remain in operation for about 18 years before closing in 1923. The school produced 423 graduates. 

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WEST VIRGINIA UNIVERSITY VETERINARY DEPARTMENT
Morgantown, West Virginia
(1905-1912)

 

The West Virginia University Veterinary College at Morgantown was organized during 1905 and closed its door during 1912 with a total of only 4 graduates. West Virginia University is the principal university of that state with a State Agricultural College is one of its departments.  

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GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF VETERINARY MEDICINE
Washington, D.C.
(1908-1918)

 

The George Washington College of Veterinary Medicine was organized under the Charter of George Washington University on March 17, 1908 in Washington, D.C. Dr. David E. Buckingham, an 1893 University of Pennsylvania graduate, served as dean until the school was discontinued in 1918. The D.V.S. (Doctor of Veterinary Science) degree had been granted to a total of 100 graduates. 

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TERRE HAUTE VETERINARY COLLEGE
Terre Haute, Indiana
(1909-1918)

 

The Terre Haute Veterinary College was organized at Terre Haute, Indiana in 1906. By the time it closed in 1918, a total of 146 students would receive veterinary degrees.  

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SOUTHWESTERN VETERINARY COLLEGE
Dallas, Texas
(1909-1916)

 

The Southwestern Veterinary College was organized in the State of Texas during 1909. When it suspended operations during 1916, this school had a total of 22 graduates.  

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ARKANSAS VETERINARY COLLEGE
Fayetteville, Arkansas
(1913-1921)

 

The Arkansas Veterinary College at Fayetteville, Arkansas was organized during 1913. When it closed its doors about 7 years later in 1920, this school had  total of 24 graduates.   

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NEW YORK UNIVERSITY. NEW YORK STATE VETERINARY COLLEGE
New York, New York
(1913-1922)

 

The New York State Veterinary College at New York University in New York City had its origins in the various earlier veterinary colleges of that city and was made a State institution on September 24, 1913. Dr. William J. Coates continued as dean of this new school. He was replaced by Dr. W. Horace Hoskins, a prominent and forceful veterinarian. Not long after Dean Hoskins' death, an announcement was made in 1922 "that operations have been temporarily suspended." 

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UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA. COLLEGE OF AGRICULTURE DIVISION OF VETERINARY MEDICINE
Athens, Georgia
(1918-1933)

 

The Veterinary Department at Georgia State Agricultural College at Athens, Georgia was organized during 1918 with a 4-year course of study leading to a D.V.M. degree. During 1933 when the entire educational system in Georgia was reorganized, the agriculture college was merged with the University of Georgia. At that time, the veterinary curriculum was discontinued. The first few students finished their studies in 1922, for a total of  49 graduates by 1933.  

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MIDDLESEX UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF VETERINARY MEDICINE
Waltham, Massachusetts
(1938-1947)

 

In 1938, Dr. John Hall Smith, a Boston surgeon, established what was hoped to become an up-and-coming veterinary college at Middlesex University (later renamed Brandeis University) in Waltham, Massachusetts. It was intended to fulfill a need for veterinary education in New England. Unfortunately, due to a number of factors, the school was short lived and forced to close in 1947 after having graduated 243 veterinarians.