Nottingham Cooperative (or Nottingham as referred to by its residents) is a 21 room housing cooperative located at 146 Langdon St. in Madison, Wisconsin, on the shore of Lake Mendota. The house was incorporated in February 1971 by a group of lawyers and students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently, the membership is composed of a mix of about 20 students and non-students. Unlike many other housing cooperatives near the campus area, Nottingham is not part of the Madison Community Cooperative. Former and current residents of Nottingham sometimes refer to themselves as "Hamsters."


The house was originally built in 1927 for the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity by Kansas architect Clarence E. Shepard (1869 - 1949.) Shepard was the premier architect of Frank Lloyd Wright's Prairie School in Kansas City, although 146 was built in the Mediterranean Revival Style. At that time, this Spanish style of architecture was popular on the west coast, especially in Hollywood, but rare in the Midwest. Nottingham's tile roof is one of the more obvious features of Mediterranean Revival. Past owners include the fraternities Sigma Phi Epsilon (1927-1939) and Phi Sigma Delta (1940-1942), an all-girls dormitory called Shoreland House (1943-1951), and the fraternity Pi Lambda Phi (1952-1970). Having officially begun in February 1971, Nottingham celebrated its 35th year of cooperation in 2006.


Over the years Nottingham has hosted many events, usually held in the ballroom. The quinquennial summer alumni reunion and the annual vegetarian Thanksgiving known as Nottingfeast are longstanding traditions at Nottingham. Other events have included the Crazy Horse Radio radio station in 1974, fundraisers for the Mifflin Street Cooperative and local politicians, open mike coffeehouses, Radical cheerleading practices, Food Not Bombs cooking sessions, bookclubs, film festivals, breakdancing, Go clubs, bingo nights, Yoga sessions, private or semi-private magickal rituals including multiple performances of Aleister Crowleys' Gnostic Mass, local Chapter meetings of such occult lodges as Ordo Templi Orientis, Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn and the Friary/Apostolic Johannite Church, and the Virgo Slut party. Since 2003, the house has participated in a venue/label relationship with local label 23 Productions, through which many experimental and noise bands have played shows. Nottingham collects no money for these shows. [1]. During Easter Holy Week of 2007, Nottingham hosted a series of lectures on magick by Lon Milo Duquette, in co-operation with the Apostolic Johannite Church.

Notable bands that have played at 146 Langdon before Nottingham (the Pi Lambda Phi era) include:

Notable bands that have played at Nottingham include:

Notable Madison bands include:

Food Co-opEdit

Membership at Nottingham also includes membership in Nottingham's Food Co-op. The food co-op is currently vegetarian with an emphasis on organic foods, and most food is purchased through the Mifflin St Co-op, or a local CSA (community supported agriculture) in the summer. Although all house members are part of the food co-op, non-members may also join, pending members' approval. All food co-opers must pay a flat rate each month and prepare dinners according to a set 3-week rotation. These dinners occur Monday through Friday at 6 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m.


A number of chores are expected of Nottingham's house members, including cooking, washing dishes, and cleaning the bathrooms, as well as a particular "workjob" (such as breadbaking, ordering food, and maintenance). Food and house supplies are ordered collectively. Members are also expected to attend house meetings. All policies by which the members govern the house are made at house meetings, ratified by unanimous consensus of all those present at the meeting. Any one person may "block" any motion, making it impossible for a consensus to happen. In practice, an attempt is made during discussion to formulate a motion that no-one will block, and a final block is only asserted when it is clear that no version of the proposal would be acceptable to the blocker.

Members are accepted on a rolling, open room basis. In order to become a member, interested parties must attend four regularly scheduled dinners and then schedule a "membership meeting." The members of the house in attendance then interview the interested party and make a decision to accept or reject the "membershipper."

Notable Alumni "Hamsters"Edit

Kevin Barrett, a University of Wisconsin-Madison based Islamic Scholar recently noted for openly advocating a conspiracy theory about the September 11th attacks.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Albertoni, Rich, "Live from our Living Room: The free-spirited Nottingham Co-op reemerges as an avant-garde performance venue", The Isthmus, p.16. January 30, 2004, Madison, Wisconsin.
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  7. Paul Flaherty and Chris Corsano Other Live Performances
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External linksEdit


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