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Richard H. Barry Hall, NDSU

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AOUW Lodge, Pioneer Mutual Life Insurance Company Building
1927, 1952, William F. Kurke; 2009 renovation and addition, T. L. Stroh. 811 2nd Ave. N
  • (Photograph by Steve C. Martens)

The Fargo AOUW constructed a lodge building (CS8) on Roberts Street and in 1927, as the fraternal organization evolved into the Pioneer Mutual Life Insurance Company, relocated to this new building. The AOUW letters remain visible above the front entrance under a small broken pediment on the 10th Street facade. This Beaux-Arts classical building was then three stories in height and finished with a limestone cornice and ornamental urns on the parapet. Three additional floors were added in 1952. Designed flat and blank with horizontal windows, they reflect Kurke’s growing fascination with the unadorned International Style. During the last half of the twentieth century, an enormous rooftop illuminated-neon scaffold sign was a strong visual feature of the building. In 2009 the building was acquired by NDSU as a downtown campus site for its college of business, which opened here in 2010. A major addition gives a decidedly Postmodern treatment to the architectural details of the earlier building, with overscaled scrollwork motifs and applied classically inspired ornament rendered in a variety of materials.

Writing Credits

Steve C. Martens and Ronald H. L. M. Ramsay


What's Nearby


Steve C. Martens and Ronald H. L. M. Ramsay, "Richard H. Barry Hall, NDSU", [Fargo, North Dakota], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of North Dakota

Buildings of North Dakota, Steve C. Martens and Ronald H. L. M. Ramsay. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2015, 33-34.

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