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New Science Hall

G.Phot File h.3s 1926m.tif

Photograph of architectural drawing of proposed science hall, ca. 1926.  Note below drawing reads: "The proposed new Science Hall to accommodate the rapidly expanding departments of Physics and Chemistry."

In 1926 it was determined that Hobart and William Smith Colleges were in need of new science facilities.  Smith Hall had been built in 1908 to accomodate the new departments of biology, sociology, and psychology, and contained labs for these disciplines.  Merritt Hall had long been the home of the chemistry department, and Trinity Hall had been used for physical sciences.  A new science building would alleviate the cramped conditions in these existing facilities and would allow for the expansion of lab space to accomodate a growing student body.

Architect Arthur C. Nash drew up the design for this new science hall.  Nash was the son of Professor Francis Philip Nash, a longtime professor of modern languages from 1871-1908.  The building closely resembles Smith Hall and Williams Hall, both of which were designed by Arthur Nash.  Nash had also been the architect for Miller House on the William Smith hill.  This drawing of the new science hall was included in a pamphlet published by Hobart College in 1926, implying that the administration was fairly confident that the building would be built.  It is unclear from the drawing where on the campus the building would have been placed.

At the same time that this new building was being proposed the college was undertaking a renovation of Coxe Hall that would include an addition for more classroom space.  Talk then turned to starting a capital fund campaign for new college buildings, indicating that perhaps there was no money to immediately start on the science building.  The campaign did not begin until 1929, at which time the college contracted with architect Hobart Upjohn to make a general plan for the future development of both campuses.  One of Upjohn's proposals was for a new science building.  His "Plan for the Future Development of Hobart College" is included in this exhibit.