Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


East Hall

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Institution Name: Ripon College
Original/Historic Place Name: East College
Location on Campus: NE corner of upper campus (Ransom St.) near end of Blossom St.
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1851-1863original construction Gill, Andrew
1882-1883addition; remodeled Unknown
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: stone
Walls: stone; brick
Roof: fiberglass shingle roof
ca. 1861other (used briefly as a rendezvous for the First Wisconsin Cavalry)
ca. 1863old main (Brockway College)
ca. 2004-present (2007)classrooms
ca. 2004-present (2007)faculty offices
ca. 2004-present (2007)other (lounge)
ca. n.d.chapel

Significance: education, religion
Landmark designation:
National RegisterRipon College Historic District (1995)
Narrative: see below
References: see below

The original building was built by the founders of the Village of Ripon and volunteer labor to attract the "right breed of people" to a frontier settlement. It was remodeled and enlarged in 1883, using the same style and materials. Kresge Little Theatre in East Hall was the site of the first debate sponsored by the National Forensics League in 1931.

Brockway (Ripon) College was a typical "booster" College on the American frontier in the mid 19th century. It was affiliated almost from the beginning with the Congregational Church. Use by the State of Wisconsin as the rendezvous for the First Wisconsin Cavalry at the outset of the Civil War was the first of three occasions when the College turned over a part of its facilities to either the State or Federal Government for military purposes, the other two being the two World Wars of the 20th Century. East Hall has been renovated a number of times and is in quite good condition, although not fully accessible for the handicapped.

I. Bibliographic sources:

Ashley, Robert and George H. Miller. Ripon College: A History. Ripon, WI: Ripon College Press, 1990.

Cartwright, Carol Lohry. Ripon College Historic District. National Register of Historic Places designation report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/ Park Service, 1995.

Peotter, Tonya, Dianne Bell, George Miller, and Louise Schang. "Ripon College Buildings: Past and Present." 1989, revised 1991. Archives, Lane Library, Ripon College, Ripon, WI. Online (2006).

II. Location of other data:
University: Library, Special Collections
Government Offices
Other: Ripon Historical Society.

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