Saybrook College, opened in 1933, shares the Memorial Quadrangle with Branford College. The Memorial Quadrangle, a gift of Mrs. Stephen V. Harkness in 1917, was then remodeled with funds provided by Mr. Edward S. Harkness, Class of 1897, to create a system of residential colleges, modeled after the Oxford and Cambridge college systems. Ten Yale residential colleges had opened by 1940; Morse and Ezra Stiles accepted their first students in 1962.
Saybrook College takes its name from the Connecticut town where the Collegiate School-which would later be known as Yale College-was founded in 1701, and where instruction would be offered from 1707-1716. The two college courtyards retain millstones that were driven to New Haven by oxen in 1921 from the towns of Saybrook and Killingworth. Numerous carvings, sculptures and armorial decorations adorn the arches and entryways. The blue and gold Saybrook College arms descend from the arms of William Fiennes, First Viscount Lord Saye and Sele (1582-1662), and Robert Greville, Second Baron Lord Brooke (1608-1643), co-founders of the original colony of Saybrook and noted English Puritans who never left Britain to visit the town they supported in New England. The badge of the College is the grapevine, derived from the original seal of Saybrook colony. The grapevine motif can be seen throughout the College, most notably carved in stone over the High Street gate and in needlepoint in the Saybrook Arras in the Dining Hall.