In 1899 Washburn Field was named for the Rev. Philip Washburn, rector of St. Stephen's Episcopal Church (Grace Episcopal Church & St. Stephen's Parish now). Philip Washburn was a personal friend of General Palmer's. He was very interested in the college, and it is said he never missed a practice or an athletic event of the college. Washburn Field was constructed in 1898. It included a football field encircled by a 440-yard track, a baseball diamond, a grandstand seating 600 (including box seats), and parking space for carriages, tallyhos and other vehicles. The stadium, named the van Diest Stadium after Edmund van Diest, a trustee of the college and an engineer for General Palmer, was presented to the college in 1926. That stadium seated 11,000.
Washburn Field circa 1926