Early University of Nebraska Buildings

Published: Feb. 22, 2019 at 3:47 PM CST
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The original footprint of the University of Nebraska Lincoln featured some unique buildings.

As the University of Nebraska Lincoln celebrates its 150th birthday, we decided to learn more about some of the original buildings. Many of them no longer stand. For more information, we went to Professor of Libraries Kay Logan-Peters.

"The original campus was not very big. It only went from 10th street to 12th street, and from R street up to T street. So just four city blocks," Logan-Peters said. "Right in the middle of that was the original building, which became known as University Hall." The building apparently was constructed at a time when there weren't very good materials around. So the building did not survive the test of time. The building was constructed in the late 1800's, and it lasted until the 1940's and was torn down. "The University worked really hard to keep the building upright, but it came down," Logan-Peters said.

One building that is still original is known as Architecture Hall. It was built between 1892 and 1895. "It was actually the original campus library," Logan-Peters said. "In the beginning, the library was in University Hall, but it got too crowded, so the new library was built." The library later moved to Love Library, and eventually the current Architecture Hall building became the home to architecture.

There were other buildings on campus in the beginning as well. "We had a small museum that was a pre-cursor to Morrill Hall, and there was a Nebraska Hall," Logan-Peters said. "Behind Architecture Hall, we have Brace and Richards Hall. Both of them have been there since the first decade of the 20th Century. And there was an administration building that was constructed on R Street. The man who constructed that was Thomas Kimball. He is probably Nebraska's best known historic architect," Logan-Peters said. The adminstration building was taken down in 1963, to make room for the Sheldon sculpture garden.

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