Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Lewis Recitation Hall

Click on image titles for larger views.
Institution Name: McDaniel College
Original/Historic Place Name: Lewis Recitation Hall
Location on Campus: South entrance, west side past President's house
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1914original construction Anderson, Charles M.
1966expansion (Lewis Hall of Science) Unknown
1999expansion (Eaton Hall); renovation Unknown
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: stone
Walls: brick
Roof: metal
1914-present (2007)classrooms (including recitation hall and laboratories)
ca. 2001-present (2007)academic department buildings (economics and business administration, communication, sociology)

Significance: education, history
Landmark designation:
Narrative: see below
References: see below

Lewis Recitation Hall was the college's first large free-standing classroom building. Prior to 1914, all classes were held in a large complex of interconnected buildings centered by Old Main (the original college building built in 1866-1867). As the college student population grew, additional facilities were needed, and the recitation hall was designed to provide some small offices, many classrooms, and a third floor devoted to science laboratories (replacing a small laboratory building which had originally been designed as a gymnasium). The new building was named for the incumbent president, Thomas Hamilton Lewis (1852-1929), who had become president of the college in 1886 (after four years as the founding president of the Westminster Theological Seminary). Lewis, a graduate of the college in 1875, was a dominant force in the Baltimore Conference of the Methodist Protestant Church and a dynamic preacher and administrator. Upon assuming the college presidency, he successfully raised the necessary funds to erase the college's longstanding debt. His thirty-four year presidency was marked by significant growth in the student body, several major curricular revisions, establishment of a growing endowment fund, and the erection of about twenty buildings on the expanding campus. After his retirement in 1920, Lewis became President of the Baltimore Conference for another nine years. The Lewis name is one of the most significant in the college's history.

In 1966 an addition to the Lewis Recitation Hall was completed to provide more laboratory and classroom space for chemistry, biology, and mathematics. It was named Lewis Hall of Science. In 1999, another laboratory building was added to the complex (named Eaton Hall), and older buildings were completed renovated.

I. Bibliographic sources:

Bulletin of the Historical Society of Carroll County, Maryland 2, no. 2 (May 1952).

Chandler, Douglas R. Pilgrimage of Faith; A Centennial History of Wesley Theological Seminary--1882-1982. Santa Ana, CA: Seven Locks Press, 1984.

Makosky, John D. "Western Maryland College in the Nineteenth Century." Western Maryland College Bulletin [n.d.].

Schofield, Samuel Biggs, and Marjorie Cowles Crain. Western Maryland College The Formative Years, 1866-1947. Westminster, MD: Western Maryland College, 1982.

Weeks, Christopher. "The Building of Westminster in Maryland." Bulletin of the Historical Society of Carroll County, Maryland 2, no. 1 (May 1949).

Zepp, Ira G. "Western Maryland College: The Hill." In A Grateful Memory: History of Baker Chapel. Westminster, MD: Western Maryland College, 1995.

II. Location of other data:
University: Special Collections, Facilities Management Office

Contact us / About Site / About CIC
© 2006
Council of Independent Colleges
One Dupont Circle, Ste. 320
Washington, DC
All rights reserved
Last update: November 2006