Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Old Main

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Institution Name: Iowa Wesleyan College
Original/Historic Place Name: The Main Hall
Location on Campus: Center Campus
Date(s) of Construction and Designer(s):
1854original construction Unknown
1970renovation Unknown
Type of Place: Individual building
Style(s): (Glossary)
Foundation: stone
Walls: brick
Roof: none specified
1854-present (2007)old main

Significance: education, history
Landmark designation:
National RegisterOld Main (1973)
Narrative: see below
References: see below

Old Main was constructed as the second building of Iowa Wesleyan University. The building is on the National Register of Historic Places and underwent both interior and exterior renovations in the 1970s. It is significant as the founding location of the International P.E.O. Sisterhood, and according to Wesley I. Shank in his authoritative The Iowa Survey: Historic American Buildings (1979), Old Main was the first genuine collegiate building in Iowa. The building is in good shape and has been made handicap accessible with the addition of exterior ramps and an elevator.

I. Bibliographic sources:

Corkhill, Thomas E. "The Birth of Iowa Wesleyan." Mt. Pleasant Iowa Wesleyan, November 30, 1896.

Haselmayer, Louis A. Old Main [Iowa Wesleyan College]. National Register of Historic Places designation report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/National Park Service, 1973.

Haselmayer, Louis A. A Sesquicentennial History of Iowa Wesleyan College (1842-1992). Mt. Pleasant, IA: Iowa Wesleyan College, 1992.

Kennedy, Charles J. History and Alumni Record of Iowa Wesleyan College 1842-1942. Mt. Pleasant, IA: Iowa Wesleyan College, 1942.

Portrait and Biographical Album of Henry County, Iowa. Chicago: Acme Publishing Company, 1888.

Reeves, Winona Evans. The Story of P. E. O. 1924-1936. [s.l.]: Conco Press, 1936.

Shank, Wesley I., ed. The Iowa Survey. Historic American Buildings. Iowa City, IA: Iowa University Press, 1979.

Waring, Edmund H. "Chronicles of the Iowa Wesleyan University." Iowa Classic (March-September 1874).

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

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