Thursday, June 16, 2011

Tarleton Thursdays: Did You Know?

New Women's Dorms

Summer 1936

The first women's dorm was built in 1908 and named for benefactor Mary Corn Wilkerson. After her husband died, Mary donated 370 acres of land to Tarleton with proceeds to be used to build a woman's dorm. The first addition to the original dorm came in 1925 and was named Chamberlin Hall in honor of Lily Pearl Chamberlin, Tarleton's first female faculty member, and the person responsible for the home economics program at Tarleton.

Two new annexes were added in 1936 and named for other Tarleton women, Lena Lewis and Lotta Moody. Lena Lewis was a long time professor of history at Tarleton. Lotta Moody was director of the girls' dormitory for 15 years.

The map above, from the 1937 Grassburr, shows all four sections of the women's dormitory. On the far right is the original Mary Corn Wilkerson dorm. The first addition, Pearl Chamberlin Dormitory is the section to the left, and immediately behind Wilkerson dorm. The second addition to left is the Lena Lewis Dormitory, and the building to the far left is Lotta Moody Dormitory. The snow photo above shows the Senior Girl's Home with Lewis Hall under construction in the background.

The new additions were built for convenience! Each room had two closets. The radiators were concealed, although that did away with a place for the girls to hang their laundry to dry! Each dorm had maximum ventilation and were they constructed with fireproof brick and concrete with steel framework. The floors were of terrazzo or maple Bruce blocks. The exterior was made of Thurber brick! The new additions provided rooms for 56 girls!

Looking south the girls could view Hunewell Park and the ROTC open drill field....."a pleasing view for all the year!"

Stephenville Empire-Tribune, June 12, 1936, July 3, 1936.

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