Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Strahorn Hall

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Institution Name: Albertson College of Idaho
Original/Historic Place Name: Strahorn Memorial Library
Location on Campus: 2112 Cleveland Blvd.
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1926original design Wayland & Fennell
1967remodeled Unknown
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: concrete
Walls: sandstone
Roof: built-up bituminous material
ca. 1926-1967library
ca. 1967-present (2007)faculty offices
ca. 1967-present (2007)classrooms

Significance: culture, education
Landmark designation:
National RegisterCarrie Adell Strahorn Memorial Library (1980)
Narrative: see below
References: see below

Built in 1925-1926, Strahorn Memorial Library is one Caldwell's only surviving examples of the Neoclassical style, and one of the town's small number of buildings built with Boise sandtone. Strahorn, the college's original library, was built with two levels. According to the original librarian, the design was flawed and overcrowding of the collection was almost immediate. Half floors were added after 1948, but the problem of lack of space was not solved until a new library building was constructed in 1967. The building was also remodeled that same year and renamed Strahorn Hall. The interior was completely redesigned with three levels to accommodate both classrooms and faculty offices. The exterior was essentially unchanged, although the façade of the main entry was slightly modified. The redesign increased the floor space to 15,500 square feet. The building is located on the south side of the central Morrison quadrangle.

The significance of this building lies in the roles played by Mr. Robert E. Strahorn and his first wife, Carrie Adell Strahorn, in the founding of both the town of Caldwell and The College of Idaho. Robert selected the town site in 1883, and Carrie was instrumental in the hiring of Dr. William Judson Boone in 1887 to be the first pastor of the fledgling Caldwell Presbyterian Church. (In 1891 Boone founded The College of Idaho, Idaho's first institution of higher education.) Robert donated the library to the college as a memorial to Carrie after her death in 1925.

I. Bibliographic sources:

Attebery, Jennifer Eastman. Carrie Adell Strahorn Memorial Library [Albertson College of Idaho]. National Register of Historic Places designation report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/National Park Service, 1980.

Attebery, Louie W. Albertson College of Idaho: The Second Hundred Years. Caldwell, ID: Albertson College of Idaho, 1999.

Attebery, Louie W. The College of Idaho 1891 - 1991: A Centennial History. Caldwell, ID: Caxton Publishers, 1991.

Lukas, J. Anthony. Big Trouble. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1997.

Strahorn, Carrie Adell. Fifteen Thousand Miles by Stage: A Woman's Unique Experience During Thirty Years of Path Finding and Pioneering from the Missouri to the Pacific and from Alaska to Mexico. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1988.

Strahorn, Robert E. "Ninety Years of Boyhood." Typescript. 1942. Strahorn Library, College of Idaho, Caldwell, ID.

II. Location of other data:
University: Special Collections
Government Offices

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