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Administration Building (Old Main)

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Old Main
1912–1914, H. Rus Warne. 1941. 1951, Robert A. Sheffey. 1962, 1963–1964, Alex B. Mahood. 1997, Krebs and Krebs. Center of campus, facing Vermillion St.

The simple, utilitarian Georgian Revival lines of this extruded building, the first on the new campus, disguise a complex building history. Old Main began as a Tudor Revival structure with a crenellated tower above its central entrance. A rear addition was built in 1914, and in the 1940s and 1950s, wings housing a new library (on the west) and Science Hall (on the east) were added. The two wings have similar massing, but the library, with its shallow recessed Ionic portico, is the more monumental of the two. To make the complex more unified, Warne's central portion was redone in 1962 in the Georgian Revival style, similar to the additions, and given a new brick facing. Additional rear wings were constructed in 1963–1964. Ma-hood's plans for the 1960s work included a clock tower and belfry over the central entrance to replace Warne's battlemented tower, but they were not built. In 1997 Charleston architects Krebs and Krebs designed a more imposing central tower than Mahood intended, to house a forty-eight-bell carillon.

Writing Credits

S. Allen Chambers Jr.

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