“Del State” was founded in 1890 as the State College for Colored Students, providing education in agriculture and the mechanical arts. It now offers a full range of undergraduate programs in seventeen modern buildings on its 400-acre campus. The most venerable building is the five-bay house (c. 1780) called Loockerman Hall. Its pedimented end gables, unusual in Delaware, are handsomely adorned with modillion cornices. The pioneering historian Thomas Scharf wrote (1888), “The slave quarters were a short distance away. Here Mr. Loockerman lived in the easy style of the old-time Southern gentleman”—ironic, given the subsequent history of the house as this historically African American college's main building and, later, women's dormitory. A drive to restore the house began in the late 1960s, but a fire was a major setback, and a shortage of funds meant that the project dragged on for years. Recently, Homsey Architects has done much work on the Del State campus, including the William C. Jason Library (1990–1991), with its curving wall of blue glass, and the state-of-the-art Claude E. Phillips Herbarium, with a skylit reading atrium (1999–2000).
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Delaware State University
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