Richmond Home


In 1910, President Boatwright and the Richmond College Board of Trustees purchased approximately 290 acres in an area west of Richmond, the beginnings of the present-day campus. The Board of Trustees commissioned the architectural firm of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson to draft plans for Richmond College and Westhampton College. Ralph Adams Cram, a renowned Boston architect, was responsible for establishing the enduring Collegiate Gothic style of the campus.

Construction began in 1911. The first buildings on the new site were North Court, Residence Hall No. 1 (formerly Jeter Hall), Residence Hall No. 2 (formerly Thomas Hall), Humanities Buildling (formerly Ryland Hall), and the Refectory (formerly Sarah Brunet Memorial Hall).

Since those early days, the campus has expanded considerably. Here you will find a short history of many of the buildings and information about the people for whom they were named. You can also explore the University's virtual tour to see today's campus landscape and office locations.

Atlantic House and Pacific House

Site: Across College Road from the Robins Center (Pacific House is closer to College Road)
Completed: Atlantic House: 1930; Pacific House: dedicated October 26, 1928
Size: Atlantic House: 3,702 square feet; Pacific House: 4,000 square feet
Major Renovation: Atlantic House: 1993; Pacific House: 1990

In 1928, the University set aside four lots (A, B, C, and D) on the northern side of campus across from where the Robins Center stands now. These lots were designated sites for fraternity houses. Richmond agreed to create roads and provide water connections. The fraternities agreed to pay $1,500 in order to build on the lots.

On Lot A (No. 1 Fraternity Row) was Phi Kappa Sigma’s house, dedicated on October 26, 1928, now known as Pacific House. On Lot B (No. 2 Fraternity Row) was Kappa Sigma’s house, built in 1930, now known as Atlantic House. Two other fraternities, Kappa Alpha and Lamba Chi Alpha, contracted with the University to build houses on Lots C and D respectively, but they were never constructed.

In November 1928, The Collegian reported that President Boatwright considered “the acquisition of these lots…a distinct forward step in the campus life, indicating the progress of the University. When houses are built on these lots, and these various groups are enabled to release the rooms they now have in the dormitories, it will afford space for a larger student body, and this will give the administrative officers the necessary arguments they wish for further expansion of the University into other fields of educational endeavor.”

Due to a lack of housing space in Westhampton College, during the 1945-1946 academic year, women lived in the two fraternity buildings, and a bus transported them to Westhampton College for meals in the North Court dining room. In the 1950s, Richmond set up the lodge system in which fraternities constructed lodge buildings but did not provide housing for members. Phi Kappa Sigma and Kappa Sigma sold their houses to the university.

The University subsequently began using the two buildings as part of its regular housing system, renaming them Atlantic House and Pacific House. They were used for international housing until Keller Hall was designated Global House in 2003.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
The Collegian, 28 Sep. 1928; 2 Nov. 1928
The Web 1940, 1941, 1947, 1950
University website

Boatwright Memorial Library - Frederic William Boatwright Memorial Library

Site: North side of Westhampton Lake, on hill top
Dedication: November 1, 1955
Architects: Carneal & Johnston
Size: Original building 37,000 square feet; currently 127,533 square feet of library space
Cost: $825,000 (original building)
Major Renovations: North wing added 1976; further expansion 1989
Rededications: March 3, 1977; April 13, 1989

Frederic William Boatwright Memorial Library opened in 1955. It was built overlooking the lake, on the site of the Playhouse a wooden frame building that was destroyed by fire in 1950. The Playhouse was part of the amusement park that previously occupied the land purchased by the University. The library building was named in honor of President Frederic William Boatwright. Boatwright died in 1951, four years before the library was dedicated.

The original library in Ryland Hall was quickly outgrown, with books soon shelved two-deep and thousands of others stored elsewhere on campus. A promotional brochure for the new library campaign stated that “Only one student in ten can be seated in the library reading rooms, which are so badly crowded that study is difficult.” By 1930 an expanded library was an identified need. The first plans were drawn in 1936, by Carneal, Johnston, and Wright, but funding for the building did not come until years later.

In 1944, a $500,000 campaign was initiated to raise funds for a new library. The Rev. Reuben E. Alley, a trustee, was the chairman of the Virginia Baptist General Association Committee charged with raising the $500,000 for the library. In the Virginia Baptist Historical Society’s material concerning the campaign to build the library, several letters can be found from ministers and church clerks complaining that the fund-raising committee had overstated the amount their church had pledged to raise for the library. Alley writes that overall the appeal was successful, with gifts reaching $510,000. Contributions to Richmond’s capital needs budget brought the total up to about $800,000, approximately the amount needed to complete the building. From the beginning, space for the Virginia Baptist Historical Society (VBHS) was taken into account in planning the new library.

The library’s design is Collegiate Gothic, constructed of red brick with limestone trim. The building does not need interior supporting walls because its weight hangs on steel beams and columns. The library was designed to have few visual obstructions inside; the space was open and airy. The building is four stories and has a bell tower that is 124 feet tall.

The bell tower contains a carillon. When the library first opened in 1955, a bell rang at 8:30 a.m. and then at one-hour intervals throughout the day. At 5:00 p.m., the carillon would play a concert of traditional Baptist hymns. Lightning struck the carillon in late 1978 or early 1979, but it was not repaired until 1982. After it was repaired, a biology professor, Dr. Willie Reams, purchased new music to be played in the carillon. Today, the tower uses a 10-year-old system of digitally sampled electronic bells, which play music daily at 12:30 and at 5:00. The song-selection cards are inserted four times per year. For special occasions live music has been played from a keyboard in the tower.

The new library was dedicated on November 1, 1955 in a ceremony at Cannon Memorial Chapel. In accepting the library for the University, Dr. Justin T. Moore, Rector, stated, “There, among the literary treasures of the centuries, young people will find guides in their search for truth and beauty.” As originally built the library had the capacity to hold 500,000 volumes. At the time it opened it contained about 90,000. The building totaled roughly 37,000 square feet of floor space.

The day after the dedication ceremony, the Richmond News Leader ran a story with the headline “Library at University of Richmond Designed for Easy Book Access.” Librarian Dr. Ray W. Frantz, Jr. was quoted as saying, “The University of Richmond’s new Boatwright Memorial Library is like a supermarket. Students can pick out books here as easily as housewives can choose groceries in the most modern supermarket.”

A commemorative plaque honoring President Boatwright was placed in the foyer of the library when it opened. In May 1987, a bronze bust of Boatwright was presented to the Frederic W. Boatwright Society, composed of alumni who had graduated at least 50 years earlier, and installed in the library. The sculptor was Edward Fenno Hoffman III. The bust was a focal point at a tribute to Boatwright’s 51 years as president held during alumni weekend that month.

Two major expansions of the library, as well as several renovations, have taken place since it opened. Construction of a four-story wing on the north side of the library, facing Richmond Way, was authorized in May 1974 and completed in May 1976. According to a brochure about the project, the new wing was planned to “triple the size of the library, expanding seating capacity, and providing room for more than a half-million volumes for research and reading.” The main entrance and circulation desk were moved as part of this expansion. Upon completion, approximately 40,000 square feet were added. Plans also called for computer terminals to be placed in the library and for the Learning Resource Center to be created. The original section of the building was also completely renovated. The expanded and renovated library was rededicated on March 3, 1977.

Also added with this renovation was the Theodore F. Adams Auditorium, given by the First Baptist Church of Richmond Endowment Fund and named in honor of trustee and pastor emeritus of the First Baptist Church. The Lora Robins Gallery of Designs from Nature was installed as well and opened to the public on April 24, 1977. The Gallery’s collection includes more than 1,000 minerals, gems, meteorites, and fossils and over 50,000 shells and corals.

In 1983, the Collegian reported on plans to add more computer equipment to the library the following year. In 1983, there were 46 computer terminals or work stations in the building. The Collegian describes the computer facilities as follows:

The time-sharing computer system (similar to a party telephone line) currently located in Puryear Hall … and the E. Claiborne Robins School of Business was obtained for $35,000 in 1978, DuCharme said. [Robert DuCharme was director of academic computing at the time.] Unlike the time-sharing computer system the University currently has, the new systems would be able to work on their own power, with the ability to network into phone communication systems.

A second major expansion began in 1987. The architect for this work was Jeffrey Blanchard of the firm Marcellus, Wright, Cox and Smith. A total of 48,000 square feet was added to the library. The Lora Robins Gallery was expanded, requiring that Richmond Way be moved about 50 feet. The project included renovations to existing space. The library was rededicated on April 13, 1989.

In summer 1990, the library installed an online catalog including all materials located in Boatwright, as well as in the science, law, and music libraries. This allowed students and others to access the library catalog from computers anywhere on campus, including residence hall rooms.

In addition to the library collections, Boatwright Memorial Library houses the Media Resource Center, and the Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology. The offices of the Dean of Arts and Sciences and of the Dean of the Graduate School, the Chancellor, International Education, and the Virginia Baptist Historical Society also occupy space in the building.

In recent years, the University has dedicated resources to renovating the library space to make it more usable and inviting. The library’s bound periodicals were moved to the north wing of the library. The Business Information Center was relocated to a prominent first floor location. The Science Library was moved from Gottwald Science Center to space in Boatwright Memorial Library. A Research Commons was created for students, allowing them easier access to information technology and encouraging collaborative work. Attractive new furniture and carpeting was installed. The patio outside the library was resurfaced, and tables, chairs and umbrellas were added. A new single service point was created and self service equipment was relocated to improve the flow and experience for library patrons. A new comfortable and well-lit reading room was created overlooking Weinstein Hall. A coffee shop was added in the library lobby area.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1983

[1] At the same time, the University was conducting a Million Dollar Campaign to raise funds for other buildings and for general support.

[2] An article in the VBHS file claims that it took several months for anyone to notice that the carillon had stopped working.

[3] Boatwright had been president of the University for 51 years, the second longest university presidency in the U.S. up to that time (and perhaps since); hence the 50-year criterion for membership in the Society.

Cannon Memorial Chapel - Henry Mansfield Cannon Memorial Chapel

Site: Between Gottwald Science Center and the Wilton Center, on Chapel Circle Road
Completed: Fall, 1929
Architect: Charles M. Robinson
Size: 9,314 square feet
Major Renovations:
Rededication: November 7, 1976
Architect: Bailey and Gardner

The chapel was built as a memorial to Henry Mansfield Cannon, from funds donated for that purpose by his wife, Mrs. Lottie Southerland Cannon. Mrs. Cannon was a resident of Richmond, but prior to this gift the couple had no association with the University.

Mr. Cannon, a tobacconist, was born in 1857 and died in 1907 of typhoid fever. In 1927 Mrs. Cannon related to University President Frederic W. Boatwright, "I had been thinking for years about erecting somewhere in Richmond a permanent memorial to my husband. He left me this fortune, which had been made in Richmond, and I wished to use some of it to honor his memory. I finally decided for myself that the University of Richmond would be here as long as the city itself, and that I should place my memorial in the University campus, if you would accept it and care for it."

The construction of the chapel encountered some challenges. When digging for the foundation began, solid rock was discovered about five feet under the surface. This made it necessary to blast out the foundation rather than digging adding cost and time delays to the project.. In March 1929, the stone spire on top of the building accidentally fell and was irreparably damaged. Because of its size, the contractor decided that removing the spire was not cost effective, so the spire was buried in the spot where it fell, and a new spire was ordered and installed. The finished chapel contained the narthex, sanctuary, prayer room, guild room, bride’s room, and groom’s room.

The new chapel was the site of the formal opening session of the University on Monday, September 16, 1929, even though the interior of the building was not completely finished. The formal opening of the chapel took place on October 23, 1929 during University Week (when the Luther H. Jenkins Greek Theater was also dedicated). Seniors in caps and gowns followed the faculty into the chapel, with Richmond College students sitting on the left and Westhampton College students sitting on the right. The dedicatory address was given by Dr. Clarence A. Barbour, president of Brown University. Judge William A. Moncure of Richmond presented the building on behalf of Mrs. Cannon, who was ill at the time and never saw the chapel in person before her death. Dr. E.M. Long, Chairman of the Executive Committee of UR, accepted the building on behalf of the institution. As part of University Week, poet Robert Frost gave a lecture that evening in the chapel.

In the late 1930s, a Hammond electric organ was installed, which was used until 1961 when the current Beckerath pipe organ was built. The German organ builder, Rudolph von Beckerath, prepared the drawings and had the organ built in Hamburg, Germany. The pieces were then shipped to the United States in 36 crates, and three workers arrived from Hamburg to install the instrument over the course of nine weeks under the guidance of UR’s music director Dr. John White and UR’s organist Suzanne Kidd Bunting. Von Beckerath later traveled to Richmond to supervise the final installation and to voice the pipes. In 1961, the organ was valued at approximately $35,000 and was the third Beckerath organ in the United States. The organ has 1,200 pipes of tin, lead, and wood; the largest measures 16 feet, and the shortest is smaller and thinner than a soda straw. There are 40 ranks of pipes, and there is a direct connection between each key and each pipe that creates the sound. The organ was dedicated on February 9, 1962 with a concert by Robert Noehren of the University of Michigan.

Russell Bailey of Bailey and Gardner was hired in March 1976 to renovate the chapel. The felt covering on the masonry walls was removed to improve the acoustics; carpeting was installed over the tiled aisles; repairs were made to the roof, windows, front stairs, and walk; and new lighting, heating, ventilation, and public address systems were installed. The renovation budget was not sufficient to install central air conditioning, but a forced air circulation system was installed. The chancel was reshaped by removing several pews from the front and building broad platform steps in their place. The choir loft was restructured to hold 80 people, and wood paneling was extended around the organ case that contains the pipes. In addition, one of the stained glass windows was covered during the renovation. In 1941 Dr. Douglas S. Freeman and his wife had given a copy of Holman Hunt’s “Christ, the Light of the World” in memory of their mothers, Mary Tyler Goddin and Bettie Allen Freeman. It was decided during the renovation plans that the window contrasted too much with the Gothic architecture of the chapel and that it was being obscured by tubes from the organ, which took away attention away from the speaker’s platform.

The chapel was rededicated on November 7, 1976 during Homecoming Weekend. Dr. David D. Burhans, University Chaplain, presided (the position of Chaplain had been established by the Board of Trustees in 1973), and Dr. Elmer S. West, Jr. delivered the dedicatory address.

In the late 1980s, various donors paid for the installation of 27 stained glass windows. The windows were designed by Brenda Belfield of Alexandria, Virginia, who is known for the windows that she created for the Washington National Cathedral.

When the chapel was first built, Richmond College and Westhampton College held separate chapel services — men on Tuesday and Thursday mornings and women on Monday and Wednesday mornings. Later, the services became co-ed. The chapel has also been used for a variety of other events since its construction, such as convocations, concerts, and weddings.

In 2002, the Columbarium and Memorial Garden was created next to the chapel. The columbarium, which contains the cremated remains of alumni, faculty, staff, and students, includes 3,000 niches that each holds up to two urns; there are granite slabs where names can be engraved. The garden can be used for the scattering of ashes and also includes a central memorial plaque for engraving names. The Columbarium and Memorial Garden was dedicated on April 27, 2002.


The Collegian, 21 Sep. 1928; 15 Mar. 1929; 20 Sep. 1929; 11 Oct. 1929; 18 October 1929
Daniel, W. Harrison. History at the University of Richmond
VBHS building file
UR website
Annual Report of the President of the University of Richmond, 1928
Richmond Alumni Magazine Winter 2004

The Deanery

Site: Westhampton Way
Completed: 1925
Architect: Merrill C. Lee of Lee, Smith, and Vandervoort
Orginal Size: 1,200 square feet
Major Renovations:
Rededication: April 11, 1981
Current Size: 3,776 square feet
Architects: Rawlings, Wilson & Associates

Originally the private residence of the first dean of Westhampton College, May Lansfield Keller, the Deanery was acquired by the University following her death in 1964. The house was built in the Tudor Revival Arts and Crafts style to resemble an English cottage. The original landscaping around the Deanery was designed by Charles Gillette, who also developed the landscape plan for the surrounding campus.

The Deanery was designed by Richmond architect Merrill Clifford Lee. Lee had worked with Ralph Adams Cram at his Boston firm. He arrived in Richmond in 1920 to represent the firm in the construction of Millhiser Gymnasium. Cram approved the design before the Deanery could be built.

When first constructed, the Deanery was smaller than it is today. The ground floor had a living room, dining room, kitchen, and bathroom. French doors in the living room led to an enclosed porch overlooking the back garden. Over time, the house was filled with the souvenirs of Dean Keller’s many travels, as well as gifts from friends and former students. The house also contained many of Keller’s childhood possessions and items from her parents’ home in Baltimore. Original photographs of Keller as a child and young woman still decorate the house. Dean Keller lived in the Deanery from 1925 to 1964, sharing the house for many of those years with Pauline Turnbull, registrar of Westhampton College and professor of Latin. Keller died at age 86 in the second floor bedroom that is now the office of the dean of Westhampton College.

After Dean Keller’s death, the Deanery was put to various uses. Westhampton College Dean Mary Louise Gehring lived there from 1965 to 1976. During a housing crunch in the 1970s, students resided there.

In the early 1980s, the Board voted to renovate and expand the Deanery, making it into the administrative offices of the dean of Westhampton College and the Westhampton College Alumnae Association. The addition was designed by Scott Rawlings of Rawlings, Wilson & Associates of Richmond, but built by the University’s own physical plant staff. This added 1,000 square feet in a two-story expansion to the side, providing more office and public space. To preserve the Deanery’s architectural integrity, the original rooms were kept the same size and whenever possible, original moldings and doorways were preserved. To furnish the building, members of the Westhampton College Alumnae Association embarked on a “scavenger hunt” to find furniture that had once been in Keller Hall but had been scattered across campus. In addition, some furniture and decorative pieces from former President George Modlin’s home were placed in the Deanery. A bust of Athena, goddess of wisdom, was brought from Keller Hall and installed in the Dean’s office, where it remains.

Three major gifts made the expansion and renovation possible. These were from Elizabeth Camp Smith (WC 1918); the Westhampton College Alumnae Association; and Hannah Coker (WC 1923 and music librarian emerita). Coker underwrote the restoration of the Deanery garden.

In the mid-1980s, the Deanery’s garage was renovated to become the Ruth Wallerstein Thalhimer Guest Cottage. The renovation was funded by Ruth Wallerstein Thalhimer (WC 1922) with the assistance of the Westhampton College class of 1934. The cottage, which was dedicated on January 23, 1985, is used to house visitors, such as guest lecturers and candidates for positions at the University.


Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
Wheeler, Stuart
VBHS building file

Fountain Hall (formerly Puryear Hall)

Site: South side of Gumenick Quadrangle
Dedication: April 11, 1927
Architect: Charles M. Robinson Architects; Cram and Ferguson, consulting architects
Size: 22,719 square feet
Major Renovations: 1977, by Caudill, Rowlett and Scott

Fountain Hall (formerly Puryear Hall) is one of three in the University’s original “science group,” composed of the chemistry building (Puryear Hall), the physics building (Richmond Hall), and the biology building (Maryland Hall). The three buildings are connected by a cloister that emphasizes the Gothic style, which is not as pronounced in these buildings as it is in other campus structures.[1] In 1944, the Board voted to change the name of the building to honor Bennett Puryear, Richmond College’s first professor of chemistry. In his history of the University of Richmond, Reuben Alley notes that Puryear’s daughter, Mrs. Sarah Puryear Hill, left the University $50,000 as a bequest to endow a fellowship in chemistry.

Puryear was the first of the three science buildings to be erected. University literature from that time describes it as Tudor Gothic, with exterior walls of sand-finished brick in mingled shades and limestone trim. The building is three stories, including the basement level, but the architects designed it so that a fourth floor could be added later. The top floor was never added. University literature from the 1920s emphasizes that Puryear Hall is “of the most substantial fireproof character.” Fireproofing was considered an important element. The building that had previously been used for science laboratories, a frame building located near the falls of Westhampton Lake, burned down in October 1925. After that fire, the science departments moved for a few years to the Playhouse, another frame structure that was part of the original amusement park.

When it opened, Puryear Hall contained two physical chemistry labs, an electro-chemistry lab, spectroscopic lab, organic lab, analytical lab, research labs, classrooms, professors’ offices, and a lecture hall capable of seating 200 students. It also had a shop (presumably for building and assembling equipment), stock room, vault, combustion room, and dark room. The physics department was temporarily located in the basement of Puryear until its own building, Richmond Hall, opened in 1930. Maryland Hall, which housed the biology department, opened in 1933.When the Gottwald Science Center opened in 1977, the science departments moved there. Afterwards Puryear Hall underwent a massive renovation at a cost of $2 million and became the home of the mathematics, sociology, and modern languages and literatures departments.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
UR website
VBHS building file

[1] UR’s web site currently describes the cloister simply as a “covered walk.”

Gateway Village

Site: East side of campus, near River Road entrance, and next to the intramural fields
Completed:August 2014

Major Renovations:

More than 300 students returned to campus in 2014 to live in one of two new residence halls — Westhampton Hall and Gateway Village.

Gateway Village opened to house 176 juniors and seniors in 44 apartments within four buildings joined by a courtyard space. Each apartment featured four bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a kitchen. Students could utilize a commons area, which provides a community living room, patio, and three study rooms. Each building also had a porch on the second floor, and there are five covered pergolas throughout the courtyard space.

The building’s brick and limestone exterior was designed to score a LEED certification. The plants and flowers surrounding the new dorm were all native to Virginia.

Gottwald Science Center

Site: Between Cannon Memorial Chapel and the Deanery, on Chapel Circle Road
Groundbreaking: March, 1976
Opening: September, 1977
Dedication: March 2, 1978
Orginal Architect: John Carl Warnecke and Associates
Size: 162,000 (prior to expansion)
Original Cost: $8 million
Major Renovations:
Groundbreaking for expansion: May 14, 2003
Architect: Einhorn Yaffe Prescott, project architect: Elissa Kellett
General Contractor: Conquest Moncure & Dunn, Inc.

Classes in the sciences were first taught on the current campus in a two-story frame building located in the hollow between the lake and the power plant. A fire destroyed that building and its equipment on October 21, 1925. Following the fire, the science departments were moved for a few years to the Playhouse, another frame structure that was part of the original amusement park.

In April 1927, Puryear Hall opened as the chemistry building; in October 1930, Richmond Hall opened as the physics building; and in April 1933, Maryland Hall opened as the biology building. Those departments moved to Gottwald Science Center when it opened in 1977.

Funds for the construction of the new Science Center, as it was first called, were raised through the “Our Time in History” campaign of the 1970s. Members of the Science Facility Planning Committee traveled to 39 undergraduate science centers around the country and choose a design that was similar to that of the science center at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois. Groundbreaking took place in March 1976.

The dedication of the Science Center took place over two days, March 2-3, 1978. The event’s theme was “The Importance of Undergraduate Science Education.” The building was formally dedicated during ceremonies in the Cannon Memorial Chapel on March 3rd. An address was given by Dr. Philip Handler, president of the National Academy of Sciences. In turn, the University donated $500 to the NAS’s art acquisition fund. The next day, an alumni symposium was held in the Commons, with talks given by four University graduates who had excelled in their careers as scientists.

In April 1979, a little more than a year after the building was dedicated, the University was given $4 million gift in honor of Floyd D. Gottwald, vice chairman of the Ethyl Corporation and an emeritus member of Richmond’s Board of Trustees. The gift was composed of $2.5 million from the Ethyl Corporation, $1 million from an anonymous donor, and other sums in honor of Mr. Gottwald. The gift covered half the cost of the new building, and as a result, the building was named the Gottwald Science Center. At the time, this was the second largest gift Richmond had received.

The Science Center, which was designed to integrate the science departments, was a departure from most other campus buildings in that it only lightly referenced the Collegiate Gothic style of architecture. As a University press release described:

“The modular design of the three floors provides for vertical integration of each academic department and horizontal action between departments, a feature which enhances the interdisciplinary approach to the study of science.”

An article in the winter 1978 issues of UR Magazine, titled “Nucleus of Vaulted Secrets in a Gothic Fortress,” describes the plan this way:

“The three natural sciences -- biology, chemistry, and physics -- are housed in separate modular wings, color-coded green and yellow for biology, blue for chemistry, orange for physics, and joined by connecting corridors.”

The building was designed with no interior load-bearing walls. This was meant to allow rapid and inexpensive redesign as new emphases in the sciences emerged. In the center of the building was a three-tiered library that anchored the design and was meant to further integrate the three departments.

When it opened in 1977, the Science Center contained 26 student-faculty research laboratories, five classrooms, an auditorium, 27 teaching labs, faculty offices, “computational areas,” a shop complex, a radionuclide complex, an electron microscope suite, a greenhouse and animal facilities, and the science library. The library displayed the portraits of three influential science professors who had served at the University: Bennet Puryear, first instructor in physics and later professor of natural sciences; W. Rush Loving, professor of physics; and Robert F. Smart, professor of biology and dean of Richmond College.

In 2002, the building housed biology, chemistry, biochemistry and molecular biology, physics, and environmental studies The University of Richmond Board of Trustees approved a $35 million renovation and expansion of the Gottwald Science Center at its Oct. 3 meeting on campus.

"Once the science center's renovation and expansion are completed, our students will learn in a state-of-the art facility where they will be full partners in science programs that are steeped in hands-on research opportunities, grounded in practical applications, and positioned at the center of scientific discovery," says Dr. William Cooper, University president.

The expansion of Gottwald Science Center will include the latest technology and research equipment as well as the flexibility to incorporate emerging technologies into the science curriculum and research activities. The plan calls for approximately 28,000 square feet of new space along with renovation and remodeling throughout the existing building. New space will be constructed along parts of the current south and west sides of the building.

The completed facility will include an atrium; significant new research laboratories; and a new entry that will be more closely aligned architecturally to other campus buildings. The book collection has been moved to the main library. A science reading room will be located in the new light-filled atrium.

Upgrading the center is part of the University's ambitious science initiative that will generate a series of science program enhancements totaling more than $60 million over the next decade, intended to make Richmond a first-choice college for some of the top science students in America.

"Excellence in the sciences will benefit not only the University's science departments," says Dr. Andrew Newcomb, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences. "It will also benefit the humanities, fine arts, business, leadership and social science programs by attracting multi-talented high school students to Richmond."

The most dramatic programmatic change in the initiative is the creation of five interdisciplinary centers for scientific discovery. They include centers for material science, environmental science, neuroscience, biological chemistry, and nuclear and particle physics. Over the next 10 years, program enhancements will include the addition of up to 18 new science faculty, greater emphasis on interdisciplinary studies, addition of a new major in biochemistry and molecular biology, and development of innovative science classes for non-science majors.

In February 2003, Richmond announced that it had received a challenge grant of $300,000 from the Mary Morton Parson Foundation to help expand Gottwald Science Center. The University raised the required $600,000 in matching funds from trustees, parents, and corporate donors. Four University of Richmond trustees have created an $8 million challenge gift toward the $35 million renovation and expansion of Gottwald Science Center. Trustees Robert S. Jepson Jr., Allison Weinstein and two anonymous trustees pooled their contributions and challenged all Richmond alumni and friends to match or exceed the $8 million gift.

Groundbreaking for the expansion, took place on May 14, 2003. The project is expected to be completed by August 2005. The architecture and engineering firm of Einhorn Yaffee Prescott of Boston and Washington, D.C., which designed science centers for Williams and Swarthmore colleges, serves as project architects.

Floyd Dewey Gottwald Sr., was born on May 22, 1898 in Richmond, Virginia. He was the eldest of five brothers. He graduated from John Marshall High School and studied Chemistry at the Richmond extension of the College of William and Mary. He married Annie Ruth Cobb in November, 1919.

Mr. Gottwald joined Albemarle Paper Manufacturing company in 1918. He quickly rose through the ranks becoming president of the company in 1941. In 1962 Albemarle Paper was acquired by Ethyl Corporation. Following the acquisition Gottwald served as chairman of the board of the Ethyl Corporation continuing in that role until 1968 when he became vice-chairman.

In 1963 the University awarded Gottwald with a Doctor of Commercial Science degree. He served as a trustee from 1959 to 1982. His son, Floyd D. Gottwald, Jr. has served as a trustee since 1969 and is presently a trustee emeritus. John David Gottwald, grandson of Gottwald, Sr. and alumnus of the University is an honorary trustee.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
University website
Richmond Matters
VBHS building file

Gray Court

Site: South side of Westhampton Lake, between North Court and Heilman Dining Hall
Completed: August, 1974
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Dedication: October 18, 1974
Size: 65,000 square feet
Major Renovations:

Gray Court is named in honor of Agnes Taylor Gray, a Westhampton College graduate, class of 1923. When it was built, it was the third Westhampton College residence hall. Gray Court was the gift of Richmond trustee and former state senator Garland Gray, in memory of his late wife, whom he had met while they were students on campus. Garland Gray was a 1921 graduate of Richmond College majoring in history. The dedication on October 18, 1974 was attended by their children, Anne Garland Tullidge, Westhampton College class of 1977, and Bruce B. Gray, School of Business Administration class of 1975. They unveiled the plaque dedicating the building to their mother. The dedication address was delivered by Virginia Governor Mills E. Godwin, Jr. The ceremony was held on the Westhampton Green facing Gray Court. An open house and guided tours were available afterwards.

Even though the schedule was tight the building was complete enough in fall 1974 for freshmen women to move in on schedule. The new residence hall featured air conditioning, suite rooms joined by bathrooms, and a number of lounges. Cost of construction was approximately $2.2 million. The grounds behind Gray Court were landscaped as the 50th reunion gift of the Westhampton College class of 1925. Mr. and Mrs. Steward Chalifoux were the first head residents. Mr. Chalifoux was studying at the T. C. Williams School of Law.

Built as a women’s residence, Gray Court became a men’s hall in August 2002. It can house nearly 300 students in suite-style accommodations. Two double rooms share a bathroom. The front of Gray Court overlooks Westhampton Green and completes the square of buildings surrounding it.


Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
UR website
VBHS building file

Greek Theater - Luther H. Jenkins Greek Theater

Site: South side of Gumenick Quadrangle
Constructed: 1929
Dedication: October 24, 1929
Major Renovations:

During the 1928-1929 academic year, in response to suggestions from faculty and students that an outdoor theater would be a welcome addition to campus, Luther H. Jenkins offered to fund its construction. Jenkins was a book manufacturer in the city of Richmond, a member of UR’s Board of Trustees, and one of the original members of the Richmond Philharmonic Association. Jenkins had been born in Fredericksburg, Virginia but moved to Richmond with his mother after his father died during the Civil War. After finishing school, he formed a partnership with E.C. Walthall and later bought out his partner and established a publishing house. Jenkins died in 1935.

In writing about Jenkins’ offer to fund the Greek Theater, President Boatwright noted in his annual report in the spring of 1929 that the theater would seat from 2,000 to 2,500 and that work would “begin at once.” Construction was completed by early fall, and the theater was dedicated on October 24, 1929.

The dedication took place during University Week 1929 when the Henry Mansfield Cannon Memorial Chapel was also dedicated. The event began with a talk on dramatic art by Dr. Samuel McCune Lindsay of Brookline, Massachusetts. Dr. Douglas F. Freeman presented the theater on behalf of Jenkins, and President Boatwright accepted the theater on behalf of the University. This was followed at 4:00 p.m. by a performance of Gilbert Murray’s translation of Euripides’ Electra. The music was written especially for the performance by F. Flaxington Harker. The play was directed by Miss Emily Brown and produced by Miss Carolyn Lutz. Electra was played by Elizabeth Gill. Boatwright issued so many invitations to the dedication that not everyone would fit in the theater; instead, students were invited to attend the dress rehearsal on the evening of October 22.

Since its dedication, the Greek Theater has been used for various events, including for many years the May Day festivities presented by Westhampton College, pep rallies, song fests, weddings, and concerts.


The Collegian, 11 Oct. 1929; 18 October 1929; 4 May 1951
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Annual Report of the President of the University of Richmond, Richmond, Virginia, 1929
VBHS building file

Heilman Dining Center - E. Bruce Heilman Dining Center

Site: South side of Westhampton Lake, near center of campus
Groundbreaking: May 1, 1981
Opened: August 15, 1982
Dedication: March 7, 1986
Architect: Marcellus Wright, Cox and SmithM
Size: 40,000 square feet
Major Renovations:

In spring 1980 a Committee on Food Service Facilities was formed. They considered two options for improving food service on campus. One was to renovate the refectory and to renovate or provide a new dining hall for Westhampton. The second option was to construct one centralized dining hall to accommodate students from both schools.

Don Upperco Richmond College Student Government Association president was quoted in an April 3, 1980 Collegian article as saying, “I’d rather see one central facility than two because it would increase the informal social interaction between the two schools Even though I wouldn’t see it while I’m here, it would be good for the University in the long run.” In the same article, Beth Powell, Westhampton College Government Association president, was said to oppose a central facility citing concern over a potential loss of Westhampton identity if a central dining is built.

By Fall 1980 the decision to build a central facility had been made. The plan was announced at the October 3, 1980 board meeting. Construction began with the groundbreaking on May 1, 1981.

In fall 1980 for budgetary reasons the Westhampton dining hall was closed on weekends requiring all students who remained on campus to eat weekend meals in the Refectory. The new building eventually replaced the dining facilities in the Refectory (Sarah Brunet Hall) and the Westhampton dining room.

The building was designed by Marcellus, Wright, Cox and Smith. It took 14 months to complete, under the direction of Bass Construction. The project was completed within the $4.5 million budget. When opened there was a 930 seat central seating area divided into three sections. The building has two levels for dining with the upper level used for student food service and the lower level used for events and special programming. In a September 9, 1982 article the Collegian reported that about 2,000 students were on the meal plan Food service used about 400 gallons of mils, 350-400 heads of lettuce and 200 pounds of hamburger daily. New equipment and layout made the operation more efficient.

The University Club is housed on the lower level of the Heilman Dining Center. It serves lunch during the week during the academic year. It is a popular spot for faculty, staff and student guests.

In March 1986 the building was named in honor of E. Bruce Heilman fifth president of the University. During Heilman’s nearly 15 year term of office the University advanced its national reputation and academic programs and the endowment increased from $38 million to over $162 million. The Robins Center, the Gottwald Science Center, Tyler Haynes Commons, the Heilman Dining Center, Lora Robins Court, Grey Court, a new president’s home, and renovations to Boatwright Library, the Law School, the Robins School of Business and Sarah Brunet Hall were all completed during Heilman’s presidency. Heilman became chancellor on September 1, 1986. Dr. Heilman’s daughter, Terry Heilman Sylvester, a University alumna, currently serves on the University’s Board of Trustees.


Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1981 - 1982

Humanities Building (formerly Ryland Hall)

Site: Southeast corner of Stern Plaza, across from Weinstein Hall
Cornerstone: June 10, 1913
Architect: Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; Carneal & Johnston (local supervising architects)
Size: 32,151 square feet
Major Renovations: 1974, 1990

The Humanities Building (formerly Ryland Hall), one of the first buildings constructed on the Westhampton campus in 1914, was originally named for Robert Ryland and for Charles H. Ryland. Robert Ryland was the first president of Richmond College serving in that position from 1840 to 1866. Charles H. Ryland was Robert Ryland’s nephew, during his association with Richmond College he served as a trustee, treasurer, and librarian of Richmond College. Charles Ryland was the father of Garnett Ryland, a professor of chemistry at Richmond College and the secretary-treasurer of the Virginia Baptist Historical Society.

Ralph Adams Cram of the Boston firm of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson was hired by President Frederic W. Boatwright to erect the first buildings on the Westhampton campus. Cram was well a known architect and a proponent of the Collegiate Gothic style.

In addition to Richmond College and Westhampton College, Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson were commissioned to continue work on the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, and to design buildings for Princeton University, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and Williams College. Ralph Adams Cram was later appointed Supervising Architect at Bryn Mawr College from 1924 to 1934. Bryn Mawr’s campus is known for its Collegiate Gothic architecture. am contracted with the Richmond firm of Carneal and Johnston to be Cram’s local representatives to ensure that plans were being carried out correctly. Later, Carneal and Johnston became UR’s official architects and designed many of the campus buildings until the 1970s.

The cornerstone for Ryland Hall was laid on June 10, 1913 by Richmond Lodge No. 10 of the Masons. Ralph Adams Cram spoke at the ceremony, stating that the idea was “to abandon all that is ephemeral and time-saving in architecture and go back to the perfect style that was developed by our own kin in the old home over-seas, to express just these high and eternal ideals of education that were so perfectly calculated to breed high character, and did breed it, as history clearly shows.” The building was made of brick and cast stone. Buttresses provided support for the vaulted ceilings of the hallways.

When first built, Robert Ryland Hall housed the administrative offices of Richmond College, and Charles H. Ryland Hall housed the library. In August 1914, one week before the college moved to the new Westhampton campus, librarian Charles H. Ryland died. The new library was subsequently named after him, and his position as librarian was taken on by his daughter, Marion Garnett Ryland. She died in 1927. In 1955, the library moved to the new Boatwright Memorial Library building.

Originally, the second floor of Robert Ryland Hall housed offices for the president and the treasurer, classrooms, and a room for faculty meetings and conferences. On the third floor were more classrooms and the Richmond College dean’s office. The fourth floor had meeting rooms for the student literary societies, the Philologian Literary Society and the Mu Sigma Rho Literary Society. From President Boatwright’s office, he could pull a rope that rang the bell in the tower above. The shaft for the bell tower can still be seen today in closets off the fourth floor classroom and the fifth floor computer lab.

Charles H. Ryland Hall consisted of the library, which was the third floor of the western wing of the building. The second floor cloister contained classrooms. The library was one large room with a vaulted ceiling. The ceiling and the walls were dark oak. This large space is now divided into smaller offices for the English department. On both sides off the central aisle were reading alcoves. In 1914, there were 386 students, and more than half of them could be seated in the library at the same time. The library contained about 20,000 volumes, which included the law school’s books. During World War I, the university returned with its library to the downtown campus. The federal government used the Westhampton campus as a hospital facility from June 1918 until June 1919. When the institution moved back to the Westhampton campus, the law school remained in the Columbia building downtown with its library. By 1927, only thirteen years after it had opened, the college had outgrown the library space in Ryland Hall. The library was filled with shelving for the books. Classrooms on the second floor became a reading room and space for more bookshelves. The literary societies were moved out of their fourth floor meeting rooms, which were used to house more stacks. Eventually, the library staff had to shelve the books two-deep to accommodate the growing collection. In 1955, Boatwright Memorial Library opened, relieving cramped conditions in Charles H. Ryland Hall.

In the summer of 1990, Ryland Hall was renovated, which included removing paint to reveal the original faux-stone, replacing much of the original oak woodwork that had been removed in the 1970s, repairing the roof and outside masonry, installing dropped ceilings, upgrading heating and cooling systems, restoring windows, and installing new lighting, paint, and carpet.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
UR website
VBHS building file
Reports from the Committee on New Buildings, 1914 (VBHS)
Stuart Wheeler

Jepson Hall

Site: North side of campus off of Richmond Way
Groundbreaking: October 5, 1989
Opened: August, 1992
Dedication: September 9, 1992
Architect: Marcellus Wright, Cox and Smith
Size: Approx. 75,000 square feet
Major Renovations:

In the fall of 1987 Robert S. Jepson, Jr. presented a gift to the University to help fund a new and innovative leadership program. He and his wife pledged a total of $20 million towards a new building to house the program and an endowment to sustain it. Planning for the new building began shortly after the announcement of the gift.

Jepson Hall is designed in the University’s signature Collegiate Gothic style. Its impressive size, monumental tower, and wonderful detailing make it stand out on the campus. This beautiful building completes the academic quadrangle on the north side of the lake.

A groundbreaking ceremony was held at 4 p.m., Oct. 5, 1989 at the site of the new construction. Participants in the ceremony included Robert and Alice Jepson, President Morrill, Chancellor Heilman, Chancellor-emeritus Modlin, David Robbins former Dean of the Robins School of Business, Rector Joseph Jennings, Robert D. Kilpatrick chairman of CIGNA, and student Megan Semple.

Bass Construction Company was selected as the general contractor and began work shortly after the groundbreaking. The property was cleared, a drainage system was installed and preparations were made to lay the foundation. At the time it was expected that Jepson Hall would be completed in the fall of 1991. Bass Construction found that it had too many project commitments and asked to be released from the Jepson Hall project in June 1990. A new contractor John W. Daniel & Company was later hired and work on the foundation resumed. Roger Sheppard was the site superintendent for Daniel & Co. Almost 600 tons of limestone and half –a-million bricks were used in construction.

Retired Army General H. Norman Schwarzkopf spoke at the building’s inauguration on Wednesday, Sept. 9, 1992. The ceremony was attended by approximately 3,000 people. During his talk, Schwarzkopf said, “With all of our problems, the United States of America is still the greatest nation on the face of this earth and we are going to have the leadership that we need going into the 21st century because of the Jepson School of Leadership Studies.” Other featured guests included William H. Gray III, president and CEO of the United Negro College Fund, and Paul Duke, former senior correspondent with PBS and host of the “Washington Week in Review.”

Jepson Hall

Robert S. Jepson, Jr. is a 1964 graduate of the Robins School of Business. While attending the university he won the Norman Award for outstanding business school senior; was president of the school’s student government; and was president of Omicron Delta Kappa. In 1975 Jepson received a master’s degree in commerce from the Robins School of Business. In 1987 the University presented an honorary Doctor of Commercial Science degree to Mr. Jepson. He was awarded the President’s Medal in 2003 for his support to the University of Richmond. He and his wife have contributed to Jepson Hall, the Jepson Alumni Center, the Alice Andrews Jepson Theater in the Modlin Fine Arts Center, and the W. David Robbins Chair in Strategic Management.

On May 5, 2003, Jepson gave the Commencement addresses to University of Richmond graduates. He called on them to exercise honor and integrity as they moved out into the world and laid down seven concepts of personal leadership that he believes enrich his life and would do the same for others who practice them.

"Dare to dream, commit yourselves to excellence, live your lives with genuine concern for others, maintain absolute integrity and high ethics, be strong enough to take risks and learn from failure, develop a tolerance for stress, and importantly, live your lives with a sense of stewardship," he said. "All great achievements begin with dreams," Jepson said. "Each of you will reach higher, achieve more, by being a dreamer." He advised the graduates, "never to compromise the integrity of your dreams" or "allow your visions to be relegated to mediocrity or to a status of that which might have been."

On excellence, Jepson said that leaders and winners understand "there is no substitute for striving to become, becoming and remaining the very best." Every successful person also fosters a genuine concern for others, while maintaining absolute integrity in public and private life, he said. "Your ethics expressed through your actions are a clear window into your soul. All of us, every day, weave the ethical and moral fabric of our lives. We wear that fabric everywhere we go and it is there for all to see."

"Let us all take care," he urged, "to weave only that which we are proud to display." Jepson reminded the audience that leaders must be willing to take risks and that risk is part of every dictionary definition of the term "entrepreneur." Risk-taking is not "the foolhardy go-for-it-all of the gambler whose fortune is riding completely on chance," he said. The risk I speak of is a well-thought-out investment of time and resources which may pay enormous dividends, both emotionally and financially."

Jepson advised the graduates that stress is a part of business and living that "will unfortunately follow you every day and almost everywhere, and the higher you rise the more certain is its presence in your life." Finally, Jepson asked that each person demonstrate appreciativeness and humility with "a conspicuous sense of stewardship" using the financial and human capital that accumulates over a lifetime.


UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1960 – 1992
University Communications’ News Archive
Mary Maxwell

Jepson Alumni Center

Site: South side of campus off of College Road, main campus entrance is off of Crenshaw Way
Move date: Bottomley House was moved to campus on March 24, 1996
Opened: October 3, 1997
Architect: Marcellus Wright, Cox and Smith
Size: Approx. 28,300 square feet
Major Renovations:

Although the Jepson Alumni Center is a modern facility part of its history dates back to 1915. In that year, William Lawrence Bottomley, an eminent New York architect, designed and built his first house in the Richmond area for Colonel and Mrs. J.C. Wise of Richmond. The historic, 6,000-square-foot home was located just across the road from the University of Richmond campus. In 1995, the Bottomley House was given to the University by neighbors and benefactors Mr. and Mrs. William H. Goodwin Jr. The next spring, the house was moved across River Road onto a one-acre site on campus. Renovations on the house began later that year.

The Bottomley House is the centerpiece of the Jepson Alumni Center. It is used as a guesthouse for special visitors to the University. It offers five bedrooms furnished with antiques and reproductions. Each room is decorated in its own unique style, and all have private baths, televisions and separate connections for laptops. The Kilpatrick Suite, the master bedroom, offers special amenities including a four-poster canopy bed and a whirlpool tub.

Guests also may relax in the Rosenthal Living Room, with its baby grand piano and antique music box, or the walnut-paneled Richmond College Library with its historic book collection and fireplace. Paintings by Theresa Pollak decorate the library and living room. Luncheons or dinners may be scheduled in the Hartz Dining Room, featuring hand-painted wall covering and a striking gold-leafed chandelier.

The architectural firm of Marcellus Wright, Cox, and Smith designed the new wings on the alumni center. In addition to the Bottomley house, the center contains the Office of Alumni Affairs, The Richmond College Library, a banquet pavilion, a conference facility and office areas. This multipurpose conference facility includes state-of-the-art conference and meeting spaces that are available to alumni, University constituents and non-profit and corporate organizations. The Jepson Alumni Center is approximately 28,300 square feet.

Robert S. Jepson, Jr. is a 1964 graduate of the Robins School of Business. While attending the university he won the Norman Award for outstanding business school senior; was president of the school’s student government; and was president of Omicron Delta Kappa. In 1975 Jepson received a master’s degree in commerce from the Robins School of Business. In 1987 the University presented an honorary Doctor of Commercial Science degree to Mr. Jepson. He was awarded the President’s Medal in 2003 for his support to the University of Richmond. He and his wife have contributed to Jepson Hall, the Jepson Alumni Center, the Alice Andrews Jepson Theater in the Modlin Fine Arts Center, and the W. David Robbins Chair in Strategic Management.


UR website
Collegian 1996 – 2002
University Communications’ News Archive
Mary Maxwell

Keller Hall

Site: West side of Westhampton Green
Dedicated: November 25, 1936
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 20,152 square feet
Cost: $220,000
Rededicated: 1946, named for Dean May Lansfield Keller at the time of her retirement
Major Renovations: June 8, 1963, Crenshaw pool dedicated
1978, renovation and conversion of administrative offices into housing
1994, removal of gym and pool areas and renovation into part of the Modlin Center for the Arts

The original name of this building was the Gymnasium and Social Center Building at Westhampton College, although it was commonly referred to as the Women’s Center or Women’s Building. It is located on the west side of Westhampton Green, part of the quadrangle made up of North Court, South Court, the Booker Hall of Music, and Gray Court. The front of Keller Hall faces east.

Since its founding in 1914, Westhampton College had had no student commons or gymnasium for students despite the fact that the first faculty member to be hired by Dean May L. Keller was a physical education instructor, Fannie Graves Crenshaw. North Court, the original Westhampton building, had an exercise room. Following World War I, Westhampton students had gym classes in the Red Cross Building, located near the site of the present Booker Hall of Music.

The initiative to build a social center building was led by alumnae of Westhampton College and the Women’s College of Richmond, who were admitted into Westhampton’s Alumnae Association in 1925. As early as 1939 the National Alumnae Association of Westhampton College, led by Leslie Sessoms Booker, asked Douglas S. Freeman, Rector of the University, to name the building after May Keller in recognition of her more than two decades’ service as dean of Westhampton. A letter from Booker to this effect, carbon copied to President Boatwright, is in a Virginia Baptist Historical Society file on Keller Hall. Freeman’s response is not in the file.

Efforts to build a gymnasium for women students intensified by the mid-1930s, after Westhampton began offering a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education. Westhampton alumnae collected $55,000 to help fund the project.

The building was designed by Carneal and Johnston in the Collegiate Gothic style. A 1936 issue of the Alumni Bulletin describes the building as made of sand-finished brick and limestone “bought with the pennies, dimes and dollars of Westhampton’s daughters and friends.” A plaque in the lobby, unveiled on the day the building was formally opened, recognizes the important role of three women in the development of the college: Dean May Keller; Dr. Susan M. Lough, professor of history; and Fanny G. Crenshaw, professor of physical education.

The building has four full floors, including a ground floor, and a partial fifth floor in the tower. You enter the building through an octagonal-shaped foyer that is two stories high. The foyer has stone walls and an arched ceiling. The main staircase has a carved oak balustrade. When the building first opened, it had 44 rooms, including three large rooms: the gym, a reception room (Keller Hall Reception Room), and a drawing room.

The gym was on the left side of the building, on the first floor. It was two stories high and was 60 x 100 feet, with a visitors’ gallery overlooking it. On the ground level below were locker rooms and showers, as well as offices for the director of physical education and her assistant. In addition, there was a trophy room and a room for visiting teams.

The social center section of the building was to the right of the foyer as you entered. The office of Westhampton’s Alumnae Secretary was located here, and behind that, the 48 x 50 foot Keller Hall Reception Room, with three casement windows and a fireplace. Behind the reception room was a “service room” for preparing teas. A typescript document in a VBHS file describes in detail the reception room as it was when the building first opened. It was furnished with Elizabethan-style furniture, with tall high-backed, tapestry-covered chairs and carved walnut refectory tables. The color scheme consisted of tones of deep mulberry red.

On the ground floor of the social center wing of the building was a large student lounge, mainly for the convenience of day students. As with the Student Center on the Richmond College side, Westhampton’s Social Center was meant to give day students an opportunity to engage more fully in college social life beyond the classroom. The lounge had individual desks, as well as larger tables for group study. The lower level also had a tea room that opened onto a formal garden. The garden, designed by Charles Gillette, is still there today and is a memorial to Sallie Gray Shepherd Perkins, the mother of a Westhampton alumna. Behind the tea room were a serving room and kitchens. The lower level also contained a book store, run by the Westhampton Alumnae Association, and meeting rooms for student organizations.

On the second floor of the social center, there was an office for each of the four classes (first year, sophomore, etc.), a room for large student meetings, and two alumnae rooms, one for Westhampton College and one for the Women’s College of Richmond. In one of the alumnae rooms was a large bronze tablet “recounting chief facts in the history of the Richmond Female Institute and the Women’s College of Richmond.” The Tower Room, located over the foyer, was used by the Music Department. The Margaret James Music Room was on the third floor and was donated in memory of a 1916 Westhampton graduate by her parents, who also gave the college their daughter’s grand piano and library of music. Most rooms throughout the building were decorated with oak furniture of Elizabethan or Jacobean style.[1] The furniture in the Women’s College of Richmond alumnae room was Georgian style.

Students were allowed access to the building every day until 6:30 p.m.; on Wednesday evenings the building was open again from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m., and on Sunday evenings from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. Westhampton students had to apply for permission to hold dances, for a fee of $10.00. Only one dance a month could be scheduled. By the mid-1950s, these restrictions had been lifted.

In 1946 the building was renamed May Lansfield Keller Hall in honor of the Dean Keller, who retired that year after forty-two years of service to Westhampton College and the University of Richmond.

For years after the building opened, Westhampton students and alumnae proposed the addition of a swimming pool, but a lack of funds during the depression and then World War II delayed the project. A formal effort to raise funds for the pool began in 1944, seeded with gifts from several classes and a donation from the Westhampton College Athletic Association. In 1959, the alumnae association began a three-year campaign to build a wing that would contain a pool. They raised $183,000 for the project, the University contributed the balance of the funds required.

The Fanny G. Crenshaw Pool was dedicated on Alumnae Day, June 8, 1963. The pool was 11 feet deep and more than 75 feet long, with a diving board given by the class of 1959. The pool schedule included times when women students could bring male friends. The entrance to the pool was through the Emily Gardner Memorial Room. Gardner, who died in 1956, was a 1918 alumna, a prominent pediatrician, member of the Board of Trustees, and chair of the Richmond City Board of Health. Dr. Gardner was the second woman to be selected to serve on the Board, she was appointed in 1937. There were many plaques in honor of Westhampton alumnae in the pool wing.

In 1978, the administrative offices in Keller Hall were converted into housing space. In early 1993, the University announced plans for a new Arts Center, later the Modlin Center for the Arts, which would include space in Keller Hall. The gymnasium and pool areas[2] were removed and renovated to include a studio theatre, student art gallery, art studios, and offices for the Art and Art History department. Some of the rooms in the art studio section of the renovated space still have plaques noting that these rooms are dedicated to the memory of various alumnae.

In August 2003, Keller Hall became home to the Global House, a residential program designed to cultivate diversity and interest in global issues.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
UR website
VBHS building file

[1] When the Deanery was expanded and converted into offices in 1981, furniture from Keller Hall was used to supplement Dean Keller’s original furniture.

[2] The Robins Center had opened in 1972, providing athletic facilities and a pool for both men and women.

Lakeview Hall

Site: Near the corner of Richmond Way and Lakeview Lane overlooking the lake
Completed: December 2007
Architect: Hanbury Evans Wright & Vlatas
Cost: $8.8 million
Major Renovations:

Completed in 2007, Lakeview Hall overlooks Westhampton Lake. The four-story structure contains 141 beds, and was designed to house many of the Sophomore Scholars In Residence and Living-Learning programs.

The U.S. Green Building Council awarded LEED Silver certification to Lakeview Hall in November 2013. It was the fifth building on campus to be verified by the Green Building Certification Institute. The report highlighted features such as zero and low-emitting building finishes, thermal comfort, appropriate lighting control, and indoor pollutant source control. In addition, more than a third of electricity came from renewable resources; 38 percent of construction materials were harvested and manufactured within 500 miles of campus; and nearly two-thirds of the site area featured native and adaptive plants.

Law School Building

Site: On Richmond Way, near north entrance to campus
Construction began: October, 1952
Dedication: October 15, 1954
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 109,299 square feet after renovations in 1972 and 1991
Major Renovations:

Students first attended classes at the newly-opened law school of Richmond College on October 10, 1870 . The first faculty members were Judge William Green, Judge J. D. Halyburton, and Dr. J. L. M. Curry. The law school was originally housed on the old campus at what is now Grace and Lombardy . In 1914, it moved to the first floor of Ryland Hall on the new campus only to return to the Columbia Building on the old campus in 1918. Dean William T. Muse emphasized the need for a new facility citing lack of space for law library collections and the fact that the facility was regularly criticized by the accrediting teams which periodically inspected the school.

A banquet was held on February 2, 1951 at the Hotel Jefferson to launch a campaign to raise funds for the construction of a new law school building on the University of Richmond campus. Mr. G. Justin Moore, former law school faculty member, was chairman of the drive. The goal of this initial campaign was to raise $150,000, half from Richmond businesses, and half from law school alumni. Eventually $400,000 was supplied by fund raising efforts and income from the T.C. Williams trust fund.

Construction on the new building began in October, 1952. In keeping with the campus standard this building was designed in the Collegiate Gothic style. A Collegian article dated October 17, 1952 describes the plans for the new building. First floor: The library, one classroom, and a student lounge, as well as various administrative and faculty member's office, will be housed on the first floor. Second floor: A courtroom, two classrooms, and a seminar room will be placed on this floor. Third floor: A student conference room and a second seminar room, together with a large classroom will be incorporated into the third floor.

In his book The Pursuit of Excellence: A History of the University of Richmond Law School, David Mays reports that the law school moved from the Columbia Building to the campus in September, 1954 opening the year in their new quarters. He declared that the building was judged handsome, modern, and utilitarian.

The building dedication was held on October 15, 1954 at time the area was being hit by Hurricane Hazel which brought heavy winds and rain. The Honorable Edward W. Hudgins, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals of Virginia , presided of the morning ceremony. The building was presented by T. Justin Moore, Rector, and accepted by Dr. George Modlin, President. Dean William Muse gave a dedication address entitled, Four Score and Four. Dean Erwin Griswold, of Harvard Law School , gave a convocation address at noon in the Canon Memorial Chapel. Mays reports, as distinguished guests were moved from one building to another, students would form a solid wall from automobile to entrance holding against the gale and driving rain interlocking umbrellas as effectively as once was done with the shields by a Roman legion.

Additions to the building were made on the west side in 1972 and the east side in 1991.

The 1972 addition cost approximately $750,000. The new space was intended to enable the law school to expand enrollment. Enrollment in 1972 was approximately 243 students up from 191 in 1971. For the fall of 1974 Dean Wren hoped to have 350 student enrolled. The new wing included two new classrooms with a seating capacity of 108 and seven new faculty offices. Library reading room space was doubled and a recreation room added. The new wing was dedicated on April 14, 1973 . Justice Harry L. Carrico, of the Supreme Court of Virginia, delivered the dedicatory address. The 1991 addition added 47,000 square feet to the building including significant expansion of the law library. The library expansion included a provision of space for individual study carrels for each student. Carrels were to be 16 to 18 square feet and have network jacks and storage space. A new entrance plaza, a technology enhanced moot court room, five classrooms, and new administrative areas were included in the plans. The 1991 expansion project was budgeted at approximately $9 million and was completed ahead of schedule.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond , 1830-1971
Mays, David J. The Pursuit of Excellence : A History of the University of Richmond Law School
UR website
Collegian 1952-1954, 1972, 1992

Lora Robins Court

Site: South side of Westhampton Way, across from the Deanery
Dedication: May 1, 1980
Architect: Rawlings and Wilson
Size: 66,000 square feet
Cost: Approximately $4 million
Major Renovations:

Lora Robins Court is the newest of the residence halls on campus and houses only first-year women students. It was built in 1979 and dedicated on May 1, 1980. Funds for the building were given by E. Claiborne Robins, Sr. in honor of his wife, Lora McGlasson Robins. Mr. Robins was a 1931 graduate of Richmond College. A plaque commemorating the dedication was unveiled by Juliet Shield, the eldest granddaughter of Mrs. Robins, on May 1, 1980. Ms. Shield is a 1983 graduate of Westhampton College. In addition to Lora Robins Court the Robins family supported the construction of the Robins Athletic Center, Robins Memorial Hall, and the Lora Robins Gallery of Designs from Nature.

The exterior of Lora Robins Court echoes the Collegiate Gothic influence of other buildings on campus but in a modern, lighter way. The building has four stories and a tower room. A reporter from the Richmond Times Dispatch wrote that “multi-level roofing, coupled with an intricate brick-and-stone design, gives a royal air to Lora Robins Court.” The layout of the building is unique, consisting of three distinct sections, called modules, linked by common space. A university document from 1980 describes the layout:

Lora Robins Court

Each module consists of thirteen sleeping rooms radiating from a central core containing a lounge and other facilities. This ‘pinwheel’ design permits a cluster of 25 students to gather in an environment that encourages group interaction, but is not so large as to be impersonal.

A March 1979 Collegian article reported that with Lora Robins the university would be able to house 984 women in the fall of 1980.


Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1979

Marsh Hall - Robert Thornton Marsh Hall

Site: North side of Westhampton Lake, between Wood Hall and Moore Hall
Dedication: September, 1970, called Lakeside Dormitory
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 48,274 square feet
Rededication: May 13, 1973 as Marsh Hall
Major Renovation: August 2002

Marsh Hall follows the University’s standard for Collegiate Gothic architecture. It has four stories and was designed to house 280 students. At the time it was built, it was the largest men’s residence hall. The building opened in September 1970 and was known as Lakeside Dormitory. Mrs. Ester Browne was the housemother for the new dormitory. It was rededicated on May 13, 1973 in honor of Robert T. Marsh, Jr. a 1922 graduate of Richmond College, University Trustee (1953-1973) and Rector (1958-1973). Part of the exterior of the second and third floor of the building is covered in stucco and wood, giving Marsh Hall an Elizabethan look.

In a November 20, 1970 article in the Collegian, Dr. Modlin reported that a Student Planning Association was “recommending the abolition of the coordinate educational system which, they said, is antiquated. In addition to more coed dining rooms, they also requested Lakeside dormitory to be made coeducational.”

Marsh Hall is one of three men’s residence halls that have become women’s residence halls with the implementation of Recommendation 8 of UR’s Strategic Plan. Its previous reputation as Richmond’s “Animal House,” may have been exaggerated.

The Virginia Baptist Historical Society’s files provide information on some events in the building’s history. On April 28, 1984, the last day of the spring semester, there was a two-alarm fire in the hall. The fire, which caused $50,000 in damage, was started by a firecracker burning in a couch; a second floor room was gutted. Other floors sustained smoke and water damage. On November 11, 1988, a fire broke out in a lounge, it apparently started in a television or VCR. All the students were evacuated, and damage to the building was estimated at $12,000.

In August 2002, Marsh Hall became a women’s residence hall. The building was extensively renovated, with new carpeting and tiles installed and walls, stairways, and exterior woodwork repainted. Thirteen showers were rebuilt. Air conditioning and a new sprinkler system were installed.


UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1970

Maryland Hall

Site: North side of Gumenick Quadrangle
Completed: December, 1932
Dedication: April 28, 1933
Architect: Charles M. Robinson Architects; Cram and Ferguson, consulting architects
Size: 24,330 square feet
Major Renovations: 1977, by Caudill, Rowlett and Scott

Maryland Hall was the last building added to the University's original science group, composed of the chemistry building (Puryear Hall), the physics building (Richmond Hall), and the biology building (Maryland Hall). The three buildings are connected by a cloister that emphasizes the Gothic style, which is not as pronounced in these buildings as it is in other campus structures.[1]

The building opened in December, 1932. Students helped move books, lamps, and laboratory equipment from the old building to the new. When it opened the building contained 35 rooms including 3 large lecture rooms and 8 laboratories. The first floor housed general zoology, the second floor general botany, and the basement housed photographic dark rooms and preparation rooms. A culture room on the second floor contained constant temperature ovens, electric refrigerators, and boilers. There was a green house located on the roof.

Dr. Thomas Barbour, director of the Harvard University museums, and naturalist of international renown spoke at the dedication on April 28, 1933. The building was named in honor of Maryland Baptist who had raised money to build a new dormitory on campus. At Dr. Boatwright’s request they had agreed to let their gift be applied to the new Biology building instead. The shield of the state of Maryland is carved in stone above the two main entrances to the building.

When the Gottwald Science Center opened in 1977, the science departments moved there. Afterwards Maryland Hall was converted to use as an administrative building. Today it is home to: the Office of the President, the Provost’s Office, the Office of the Vice-President for Business and Finance, and the Advancement Office.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
UR website
VBHS building file

[1] UR’s web site currently describes the cloister simply as a “covered walk.”

Dennis Hall - Eugene Terry Dennis Memorial Hall

Site: On the north side of the lake, between Freeman Hall and Robins Hall
Completed: September, 1963
Architect: Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson
Size: 23,425 square feet
Major Renovations:

Dennis Memorial Hall was first occupied in September, 1963. It was a gift of Overton D. Dennis, a former Richmond College student, and was named in honor of his brother, Eugene Terry Dennis. Overton Dennis was a member of the University’s Board of Trustees from 1937 to 1971.

Dennis a Collegiate Gothic structure, complemented the architectural style of the existing men’s residence halls. The Dennis family coat of arms is displayed on the building exterior. Dennis Hall has three floors. A student lounge and suite for the dormitory director occupy the ground floor. When first constructed the building was designed to accommodate 105 men. Total cost of construction is estimated at $400,000.

With the addition of Dennis Hall, Richmond College could house 630 men on campus. But, it was determined that two additional residence halls were needed to replace the temporary building erected during WWII. A September 27, 1963 article in the Collegian reported that seventy percent of Richmond College students were from outside the area. The increased number of resident students initiated a expansion of the dining facilities on campus.


UR website
University Facilities
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Collegian 1963

Millhiser Gym - Roger Millhiser Memorial Gymnasium

Site: Behind Robins Center and south of Sarah Brunet Memorial Hall on the north side of campus
Dedication: June 7, 1921
Opened: November 29, 1922
Architect: Cram and Ferguson with local architects Lee and Lee
Size: 30,170 square feet
Major Renovations:

Roger Millhiser Memorial Gymnasium was given to UR by Clarence and Regina Millhiser in memory of their son, Roger, a Richmond College student who died from complications after surgery at the Yale University infirmary.

Roger Millhiser was a Richmond College student from 1913 to 1915 after which he transferred to Yale. While at Richmond Roger was very involved in college life and activities. He served as the business manager of the Collegian and was involved in numerous clubs. In 1917 he was a member of the Richmond College “Alumni Gymnasium Committee.”

The cornerstone was laid according to Masonic ritual by Richmond Lodge No. 10 A. F. and A. M. headed by Marshall W. Penick Shelton. Col. Thomas B. McAdams, a university alumnus and Past Master of the officiating lodge delivered an address. This address can be found in the September 10, 1921 edition of the Collegian which can be accessed online.

When the building opened in 1921, University literature referred to it as “one of the finest athletic plants of any college of its size in the country.” The main floor of Millhiser Gymnasium contains a regulation basketball court, which is still used. In decades past, the space was also used for indoor track work, early baseball practice, and football formation drills in bad weather. When first built, the main floor contained the trophy room and offices of the athletic director and medical director. In the basement were training rooms, showers, locker rooms, visitors’ quarters, and boxing and wrestling rooms. The training rooms opened directly to the stadium, which consisted of a concrete stand, a quarter-mile track, two football fields, and two baseball fields. Most of the University’s athletic functions have moved to the Robins Center.

When the Robins Center opened in 1972, the Office of the Registrar moved to Millhiser. Administrative Computing was also housed there.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Daniel, W. Harrison. History at the University of Richmond
UR website
VBHS building file

Modlin Center - George M. Modlin Center for the Arts

Project Start: January 1994
Dedication: October 4, 1996
Architects: Marcellus, Wright, Cox and Smith (Edward A. Smith)
Theatre Consultants: Theatre Projects, Inc.
Acousticians: Jaffe, Holden, Scarborough
Contractor: Kjellstrom and Lee until June 1994, Whiting-Turner Contracting Company for the remainder of construction
Size: 164,000 total square footage
50,708 Booker Hall
43,552 Visual Arts Building (formerly part of Keller Hall)
70,740 Modlin Center (1996 construction)
Major Renovations:

In 1992 the University began working on a plan for an expanded arts center to improve the performance, rehearsal and exhibition venues, classrooms and studios for the visual and performing arts and to provide room for continued growth. The plan was for the new building to connect to the existing Modlin Fine Arts building with an archway above Keller Road similar to the archway in North Court. The existing Emily Gardner Room and the Keller Gymnasium would be a converted for use by the art and art history department and the area occupied by Crenshaw pool would become part of a new theater complex that would house a new theatre and dance venue and related shop space. Camp Theater would become a concert hall.

In January of 1994 demolition work began in the Keller Hall gymnasium and pool areas. In June, Kjellstron and Lee asked to be released from the contract because the firm could not guarantee a maximum price acceptable to the University. Whiting-Turner was then hired to finish the project. The Board of Trustees had approved a budget of $22 million for the entire project including furnishings and technology.

Booker Hall renovations were complete and the building was ready for occupancy by the fall of 1995. A new studio theatre, the Cousins Studio replaced the Q-Hut as a place to hold theatre classes and stage productions. Kathleen Panoff, the new Executive Director of the Modlin Center for the Arts joined the University in November 1995.

When the project was completed, the former single-building complex was transformed into 165,000 square feet of state-of-the-art performance venues, galleries, studios and classrooms for the arts. The new Modlin Center for the Arts became home to the departments of art and art history, music, theatre and dance, the new Parsons Music Library as well as the Modlin Center administrative offices —all under one roof.

George M. Modlin Center for the Arts

On October 2, 1996 a crowd of people gathered outside the Modlin Center for the Arts for the dedication of Bravo the new outdoor sculpture by John Raimondi donated by Ed and Nancy Eskandariam. Harry Z. Rand curator of the National Museum of American Art spoke at the ceremony saying the “Bravo will signal the keen anticipation for what they [the audience] will see.” The bronze sculpture is about 28 feet tall and weighs about 5 tons according to a quote by Raimondi in a September 1996 article in the Collegian. Raimondi and his work crew came to campus to weld the sculpture together on site. It depicts a dancer, an opera singer, and a conductor. “I love the magic of them jumping out of the ground,” said Raimondi. Details of the sculpture include musical notes and Greek masks of comedy and tragedy placed on the figures.

Prior to the actual opening, Kathy Panoff and the Modlin Center staff staged a Mock Gala involving students and parents who were on campus for Parent’s Week-end. They used the opportunity to practice moving people around the venue, testing handicapped access, and a rehearsal for ushers. It also served to get students involved and gave them a behind the scenes view of operations.

As part of the opening festivities the University named several individuals to receive Alumni Achievement Award in the arts. Among those honored were Lindsey Peters Christiansen, chair of the voice department at the Westminster Choir College at Princeton University; Theresa Pollak who founded the arts program at Westhampton College in the 1920s; Bruce Miller and Philip Whiteway co-founders of Theater IV; Hansford Rowe professional actor; Karen Rosell chairwoman of the art department a Juniata College; and Kristen Buchs, dancer with the Manhattan Tap Dance Company.

In addition, public performances by The Flying Karamozov Brothers, Currents, The Manhattan Tap Ensemble, the Shanghai Quartet, the Tallis Scholars and many others were featured. A special celebration was held for University community members and benefactors. It featured performances by the Manhattan Tap Ensemble and world renowned mezzo-soprano Marilyn Horne.

"Into the Woods" a Stephen Sondheim musical was the first University Players show presented in the new arts center, taking full advantage of the new Alice Jepson Theater. New gallery space hosted three inaugural exhibits: Gemini G.E.I recent prints and sculpture for the National Gallery of Art; Form Over Function an exhibit of modern furniture; and Seeing Across Cultures: Objects from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

Since it’s opening the Modlin Center for the Arts presents world-class performing arts events as part of the Modlin Great Performances Series, main-stage productions presented by the University Players and Dancers and music performances as part of the Department of Music’s annual free concert series. Located throughout the campus, University Museums presents more than 20 exhibitions of national and international art and artifacts as well as student work.

All of the events presented at the Modlin Center feature an academic component designed specifically for Richmond students. These activities, all of which are free and open to the public, include master classes, lecture demonstrations as well as pre-concert and pre-exhibition lectures.

Lewis Thomas Booker, for whom the Booker Hall of Music is named, is a University of Richmond graduate who currently serves on the Board of Trustees as trustee emeritus. Mr. Booker has served the University as Rector, vice-Rector, and chair of the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees. The Lewis T. Booker Professorship in Religion and Ethics was established in his honor. His mother Leslie Sessoms Booker, an alumna herself, directed the Westhampton College Alumni Association for many years. In Claire Rosenbaum’s book, A Gem of a College, she tells us that Mrs. Booker served as Alumni Secretary from 1943 until 1968 retiring after 25 years of service. “Among her many duties were fund raising, working on the alumni bulletin, planning homecomings and reunions and keeping up to date files on all alumnae. The Leslie Sessoms Booker Award was subsequently established by the alumnae in her honor, and is given at the Senior Dinner to the senior who best typifies the spirit of Westhampton College.” His father Russell was also a Richmond College graduate. The Booker family also established the Russell E. and Leslie Sessoms Booker Scholarhip fund.


UR website
University Facilities
VBHS building file
Collegian 1937 – 1996
Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989

Modlin Visual Arts - George M. Modlin Fine Arts Building

Site: South side of campus, on Keller Hall green, facing South Court
Groundbreaking: August 17, 1966
Opened: Fall, 1968
Dedication: November 2, 1968
Architect: Carneal and Johnston
Size: 50,708 square feet
Cost: Approximately $1 million
Major Renovations:

In the fall of 1937 the University created a new department of Fine Arts. While courses in the arts had been taught for many years this was the beginning of an organized field of study. At this time talk of the need for a new fine arts building began. In 1937 it was estimated this building would cost between $100,000 and $150,000.

In the 1950s, while the law school building and the library building projects were underway, the next priorities were identified as a business school building, a men’s dormitory, and a fine arts building. In late 1964 the University launched a $1.5 million fund drive to raise money for a fine arts building, a new men’s dormitory, and additional facilities for University College. By April 1965 the campaign had raised all but $170,000 of its goal and had earmarked $650,000 of the proceeds for the fine arts building. Planning for the new building was delayed slightly in November 1965 while the architects took time to address the complicated acoustical issues that the needs of different types of performances presented.

The fine arts building project was authorized by the Board of Trustees in June 1966. Construction began with a groundbreaking on August 17, 1966. The Bass Construction Company was selected as the contractor. The building would initially house the departments of art and art history, drama, music, and speech which at the time were scattered around campus. Dirt excavated from the site was used to enlarge the Keller Hall parking lot that would serve the new building. While digging the site the construction crews hit granite which necessitated the use of dynamite to break it up.

A 746-person theater with near perfect acoustics, soundproof rehearsal rooms, classrooms, faculty offices, library facilities, studios, and an art gallery were part of the plan. The building was completed in the fall of 1968. At 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, November 2, 1968 the university dedicated the Fine Arts building with a public address entitled “The Theater of Commitment” delivered by Eric Bentley, professor of drama at Columbia University and well known critic. A Fine Arts Festival was held that week-end in conjunction with alumni week-end and the dedication. Oliver was the first production that the University Players performed in the new Camp Theater opening on November 1, 1968. Lowell Nesbitt was the Boatwright scholar-in-residence and his paintings were on display in the Fine Arts Building. The theater was named in honor of J. L. Camp, former Trustee whose family donated funds for the facility.

On Alumni Day, May 15, 1971 the building (affectionately call the “FAB” by students) was named in honor of George M. Modlin, retiring president. Dr. Robert T. Marsh, Jr. rector of the Board said “It is a symbol which recognizes in part his great contribution to the University, particularly as a builder.” In a February 1973 Collegian article, Professor William H. Lockey, Jr. of the speech and drama department was quoted as saying, “One of the joys of the building is being with the other departments. When you are in the arts, you’re interested in all the arts.”

As the university grew so did all of the departments housed in the Modlin Fine Arts Building. In November 1974 Dr. Barbara McMurtry, chairman of the music department, was interviewed by the Collegian about the space problems. Provost Glassick was working with the departments to identify short-term solutions until a new student center was completed which would free up space in Keller Hall.


UR website
University Facilities
VBHS building file
Collegian 1937 – 1996
Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989

Moore Hall - T. Justin Moore Hall

Site: On the north side of campus, behind Freeman Hall
Dedication: May 17, 1969
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 37,882 square feet
Cost: $475,000
Major Renovations: 1989

On February 5, 1979 the University’s Board of Trustees approved the awarding of a contract for a new dormitory for men. This new building would be the largest of the eight men’s residence halls in existence at the time, six of which had been built under Dr. Modlin’s administration. The firm of Thomas E. Nuckols was hired to do the construction from plans drawn Carneal and Johnston. The building dedication took place on Saturday, May 17, 1969 at 11:00 a.m. as part of the Alumni weekend celebration. With the completion of Moore Hall the University was able to discontinue use of the old WWII barracks buildings as residences.

T.. Justin Moore was a 1908 graduate of Richmond College. Reuben Alley reports that he served on the T. C. Williams School of Law faculty from 1914 until 1927 at one point declining the offer to become dean. He served as a member of the University’s Board of Trustees from 1936 to 1958 and as Rector from 1951 to 1957.


UR website
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Collegian 1969

North Court

Site: South side of Westhampton Lake, across from the Greek Theater on Westhampton Way
Work began: July, 1911
Completed: Summer, 1913
Architect: Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; Carneal & Johnston (supervising architects)
Size: 96,478 square feet
Cost: $218,385
Major Renovations:

On March 3, 1914, the charter of Richmond College was amended to establish two coordinate colleges: Richmond College for men and Westhampton College for women. The original Westhampton College building was designed to be a complete college. Originally the building was simply referred to as Westhampton College, but later in 1948, when South Court was constructed, the original building was renamed North Court.

Work began on the construction of the Westhampton College building in July 1911 and was completed in the summer of 1913. It was constructed of custom brick laid in Flemish bond pattern with decorative tile inlays. The tile was produced by the Pewabic Pottery. The building was designed to be fireproof utilizing a steel framework, reinforced concrete, steel stairways with slate treads, and concrete window frames with bronze sashes. The building had an English style dining room with vaulted ceilings of dark wood.

Westhampton College was designed in Gothic style. The Tower divided the residential and academic wings. The building consisted of dormitory rooms (single and double), a kitchen and dining hall, classrooms, a reading room, reception rooms, and offices. The structure was built around an English courtyard, which was planted with sod from the old campus downtown. In addition, many of the walkways of the new campus were paved with bricks from walkways on the old campus.

On opening in the fall of 1914, Westhampton College enrolled 82 women: 38 residential and 44 commuting. The building was designed to accommodate 135 students. Since there was space, a number of faculty members and administrators also lived in the building, including: Cleo Hearon, professor of history; Hilda Beale, instructor in mathematics; Fanny G. Crenshaw, director of athletics; Dean May Lansfield Keller, dean of Westhampton College; Benjamin West Tabb, treasurer, and his family; R.E. Gaines, professor of mathematics at Richmond College, and his family; Eugene L. Bingham, professor of chemistry, and his family; and Dr. Frederic Boatwright, president.

Since the library in Ryland Hall could be used by first and second year Westhampton students only at certain hours, a reading room was established in Westhampton College. The appropriate materials were kept on reserve shelves. At first, the reading room was located in the office of the Dean’s secretary, but by the second year more space was needed, and it was moved to the third floor of the Tower. Later, in 1958, a modern language laboratory was established in the Tower, which contained projection booths and recording machines. The language lab is now located in Puryear Hall.

North Court

The Tower was also used by students for indoor exercises, although some students claimed that they got all the exercise they needed by racing to catch the “old black bus,” a cart drawn by two mules that transported Westhampton College students to the Number 9 streetcar that brought students downtown.

At first, chapel services for women were held in North Court, but beginning in 1919, services were held in the structure that had been built and then vacated by the Red Cross (located near the current site of the Modlin Center). In June 1918, the Army had leased UR’s campus for use as a debarkation hospital during World War I. During the 1918-1919 academic year, Westhampton College students moved out of North Court and back to the old campus. Students were housed in rented quarters in St. Luke’s Hospital at Harrison and Grace Streets and in residences on Franklin Street and Monument Avenue. Their classes were held at Broad and Lombardy Streets. Richmond College and Westhampton College returned to the Westhampton campus for the opening of the academic year in the fall of 1919.

When Richmond College moved to the Westhampton campus, there was no designated place for the museum that had been housed in Jeter Hall on the old campus. Museum objects were stored in various locations around the new campus. For a while, the museum was located in Maryland Hall as part of the biology department. After Maryland Hall became an administrative building in 1977, much of the museum’s collection was moved to the classics department in North Court, where it is now housed. Other objects from the museum are housed in the Lora Robins Gallery of Design from Nature.

After E. Bruce Heilman Dining Hall opened in 1982, what had been the women’s refectory in North Court was converted into a recital hall. The recital hall was used for chamber music concerts. The North Court recital hall was refurbished in 1989. The dark red seats of the recital hall are modeled after those in the Carpenter Center. The hall was renovated again in 1995 and renamed Perkinson Recital Hall in honor of Byrd Boisseau Perkinson (WC 1940) and William H. Perkinson (RC 1938). Today, Perkinson Recital Hall is home to many music department events, including student recitals, lectures, and rehearsals. The venue seats approximately 150 audience members; two pianos and one of the department’s harpsichords are available for rehearsals and performances. Dressing rooms and a green room are located backstage.

In 1988, North Court was renovated as part of a $2.25 million project to upgrade heating, air conditioning, security, and the fire alarm system. New landscaping, lighting, ceilings, furniture, paint, carpet, windows, doors, and laundry facilities were installed.

The former kitchen was renovated in 1990 and became space for the religion department.


Minutes of the Eightieth Annual Session of the Virginia James River Baptist Association Held with Buckingham Baptist Church, Buckingham County, Va. July 30th, 31st and August 1st, 1912
Nineteenth Annual Report of the President to the Trustees of Richmond College, June 1914
Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
University of Richmond Magazine, Winter 1973
UR website
VBHS building file
Reports from the Committee on New Buildings, 1914 (VBHS)


Site: The northeast side of the lake on the current site of Boatwright Memorial Library

When Richmond College purchased the former Westhampton Park in 1910, there were several buildings standing on the property that had been a part of the former amusement park. One of these was the Westhampton Park Casino, a two storied open pavilion for dancing and dining. When funds were not available for building a chapel-auditorium on the site where the casino stood, the building committee for the new campus decided to enclose the pavilion and use it for the needed chapel-auditorium.

From 1914 to 1925, commencement ceremonies for both Richmond College and Westhampton College were held in the building. In June 1918, the Playhouse became a barracks for enlisted men serving in World War I, and a second floor was added. After the war, the building was again used as a chapel until Cannon Memorial Chapel was completed in 1929.


The Playhouse was used at various times as an auditorium, gym, office space, and theater for both Richmond College and Westhampton College. After Science Hall was destroyed by fire in 1925, the science departments moved to the Playhouse. They remained there until the new science buildings (Puryear, Maryland, and Richmond Halls) were completed between 1927 and 1933. The University Players performed in the building throughout the 1940s.

On November 19, 1950, a fire destroyed the stage and backstage area of the Playhouse. The building was used to a limited extent afterwards. After the January 1951 fire at the Student Shop, the Slop Shop was moved into the west wing of the Playhouse under the balcony, extending from the Messenger office to just in front of the stage. Eventually the Slop Shop and the post office were moved into the building that is now called Weinstein Hall when it opened in 1951. When the Playhouse was torn down in 1953 to begin work on Boatwright Memorial Library, the Richmond Times Dispatch referred to it as “the oldest landmark on campus.”


Rosenbaum, Claire Millhiser. A Gem of a College: The History of Westhampton College, 1914-1989
VBHS building file
Reports from the Committee on New Building, 1914 (VBHS)
The Collegian, December 1, 1950; 12 January 1951

Queally Center for Admissions

Site: East side of campus, near River Road entrance, and across from the Gottwald Science Center
Completed: August 2016
Size: 56,000 square feet
Dedication: Oct. 14, 2016
Cost: $26.5 million
Major Renovations

When the Queally Center opened in 2016, it became the first destination for prospective undergraduate students and families visiting the University, as well as for employers visiting campus to recruit students for internships and jobs. Built as a centralized home for the offices of Undergraduate Admission and Employer Development, the facility embodies the university’s commitment to attracting the most gifted students and positioning them for successful careers after graduation.

The Queally Center also opened with new offices for the Registrar, Bursar, and Financial Aid.

In addition, the 56,000-square-foot facility offers spacious venues for large-scale events and programs, and was built to LEED environmental standards. Nearly 50 major gifts from alumni, parents, and foundations supported the construction of the facility, totaling more than $17 million in philanthropy for the project.

Queally Hall

Site: On the north side of campus, on Gateway Road near the north entrance to campus
Completed: January 2011
Size: 37,000 square feet
Dedication: March 30, 2011
Major Renovations:

Queally Hall, the 37,000-square-foot addition to the E. Claiborne Robins School of Business, was designed to enhance the student experience at the university. New features include business research and teaching centers, a finance trading room, a café, a 225-seat auditorium, and numerous classrooms, offices, and student meeting rooms.

The trading room features a stock ticker and a video wall comprised of six 47-inch screens that flash financial data and announcements, as well as 14 computer stations with dual monitors. The space will serve as a resource area, particularly for finance students to meet and research stocks. “When you go in there, you see Wall Street; you feel that in the room,” said Nancy Bagranoff, dean of the Robins School.

The school’s international business programs office also moved into a suite in Queally Hall, bringing together the program staff in a common area, and providing office space for visiting international scholars.

A dedication on March 30 recognized the support of lead donors Paul B. Queally and Anne-Marie Flinn Queally, both 1986 Phi Beta Kappa graduates of the University, and all who contributed to the new facilities. The event included a dedication ceremony, reception and open house, building tours, and a co-sponsored leadership forum with the Jepson School for Leadership Studies featuring Ali Velshi, chief business correspondent and host of “Your $$$$$” on CNN.

Paul Queally is co-president of Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe. The Queally family’s generosity has extended to numerous areas across the university, including the Queally Center, which integrated the offices of admission, financial aid, and employer development under one roof, and Q-Camp, a three-year sequence of programs that introduces business students to practical career skills through progressive exercises.

Robbins Tower is the architectural centerpiece of Queally Hall. The tower is named for the late business school dean, W. David Robbins, who retired in 1995 after 35 years at the university, 18 as dean. Robbins Tower punctuates the gateway to the university on Campus Drive. It contains a spiraling, open staircase and is topped with a custom weather vane fashioned with a spider – the suggestion of Thomas Cossé, associate dean of the International Business Program.

The Refectory (formerly Sarah Brunet Memorial Hall)

Site: On Richmond Way across from the Law School
Begun: July 19, 1913
Completed: August, 1914
Architect: Ralph Adams Cram of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; Carneal & Johnston (supervising architects)
Size: 27,463 (after expansion in 1986)
Cost: $45,515
Major Renovations: 1943, 1964, 1985
Rededication: June 1, 1985

The Refectory (formerly Sarah Brunet Memorial Hall), one of the first buildings on campus, was originally simply called the Refectory and was built to serve as the men’s dining hall for Richmond College. Construction of the Refectory began on July 19, 1913 and was completed in August 1914. The building is constructed with Flemish bond brickwork and leaded glass windows. Some people believe that the stone portrait of a man wearing spectacles positioned above the front door is the likeness of Ralph Adams Cram, architect of the original campus buildings.

The Refectory was later named for Sarah W. Brunet of Norfolk, Virginia, who had endowed a scholarship at Richmond College and who had left a number of real estate holdings to Richmond College in her will. Brunet died in 1888. The University took possession of the different properties over time, as Brunet’s family members and life-tenants of the properties passed away. The 1922 President’s Report to the Board of Trustees states that the institution felt it should create a memorial to Brunet in recognition of her generosity; as a result, the Richmond College refectory was named in her memory on June 6, 1924.

The first meal was served in the refectory on September 14, 1914 to Richmond College students. The last meal was served on August 15, 1982, with the opening of the E. Bruce Heilman Dining Center. When The Refectory opened, there were more than 250 Richmond College students. Male and female undergraduate enrollment in the fall of 1982 totaled 2,666: 1432 men and 1234 women.

In July 1943, Navy V-12 program students arrived. They lived in Jeter Hall and Thomas Memorial Hall and ate in the main dining rooms in The Refectory. That year a new dining room was added at the back of the building to accommodate the increased number of students.

With the construction of more men’s dormitories in the 1950s and 1960s, a new kitchen was added in a 1964 renovation to provide additional dining facilities for Richmond College. In the 1970s, overcrowding became a problem and it was evident that there was a need for newer and larger dining facilities.

The E. Bruce Heilman Dining Center opened in 1982 to serve both Richmond College and Westhampton College. After the Heilman Dining Center opened, plans were made to renovate The Refectory and to use it for new purposes. It was renovated in 1985 by Marcellus, Wright, Cox and Smith, and there was a formal dedication of the renovated building during alumni weekend, May 29-June 1, 1985. The renovated building served various functions. The alumni center was housed in the front, or original, part of the building. On the right was a lounge that had formerly been the men’s team dining room. A new alumni board room was created, as well as a large reception room. The Women’s Resource Center occupied the back part of the building, replacing the latest kitchen addition. The Women’s Resource Center had its own entrance. It provided programs, workshops, life planning seminars, and counseling. The Institute for Business and Community Development (IBCD) moved into an area that was formerly part of the original main dining room. The IBCD provided continuing management education as a service to the community.

In the early 1990s, the Women’s Resource Center and the Institute for Business and Community Development (which is now called the Management Institute) moved to the Special Programs Building. In 1996, the Alumni Center moved to the Jepson Alumni Center. The Refectory was refitted to house financial aid, admissions, the scholars office, and the office of development and communications. In January 2000, the Bursar’s Office and the Registrar’s Office moved into renovated quarters in the building.


Reports from the Committee on New Buildings, 1914 (VBHS)
UR website
VBHS building file

Residence Hall No. 1 (formerly Jeter Hall)

Site: On Richmond Way
Groundbreaking: October 5, 1912
Completed: Summer, 1913
Architect: Ralph Adams Cram of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; Carneal & Johnston (supervising architects)
Size: 27,935 square feet
Cost: $189,150 (includes cost of Thomas Memorial Hall)
Major Renovations: 1975

In the spring of 1910, a committee charged with creating the campus for the new school selected the architectural firm of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson. It was determined that the campus would be built in Cram’s “Collegiate Gothic” style.

Residence Hall No. 1 (formerly Jeter Hall) was among the first buildings constructed on the Westhampton campus. When built, it was referred to as Dormitory No. 1. Thomas Memorial Hall was called Dormitory No. 2. In 1915, Dormitory No. 1 was name for Jeremiah Bell Jeter who later served as president of the Richmond College Board of Trustees. Jeter was a Baptist minister who was president of the Baptist General Association of Virginia from 1854 to 1857, was editor of The Religious Herald from 1865 until 1880, and was a charter member of the Board of Managers of the Virginia Baptist Seminary. Jeter, along with James B. Taylor, organized the formation of the Education Society in June, 1930. This led to the formation of the Virginia Baptist Seminary that later become Richmond College.

When Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson began working on the Westhampton campus, the firm had already built the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, as well as buildings for Princeton University, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and Williams College. Ralph Adams Cram was later appointed Supervising Architect at Bryn Mawr College, whose campus is known for its Collegiate Gothic architecture. Carneal and Johnston, a Richmond firm, served as local representatives for Cram, Goodhue, and Ferguson.

Construction on Residence Hall No. 1 was begun on October 5, 1912 and was completed in the summer of 1913. During World War I, while Thomas Hall was used as a base hospital for soldiers returning from France, Residence Hall No. 1 became housing for the nurses who worked at the hospital.

Residence Hall No. 1 is a centrally air-conditioned facility with 57 rooms, hall baths, lower level laundry room and bicycle storage areas, and numerous storage facilities throughout.


UR website
VBHS building file
Reports from the Committee on New Buildings, 1914 (VBHS)
University Facilities

Residence Hall No. 2 (formerly Thomas Hall)

Site: Near the corner of Richmond Way and Lakeview Lane overlooking the lake
Completed: Summer, 1913
Architect: Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; Carneal & Johnston (local supervising architects)
Size: 30,661 square feet
Cost: $189,150 (includes cost of Jeter Hall)
Major Renovations: At least four, including in 1973 and 1987

Residence Hall No. 2 (formerly James Thomas, Jr. Memorial Hall) was one of the first buildings constructed on the Westhampton campus. Construction began on October 5, 1912 and finished in the summer of 1913. Originally it was called Dormitory No. 2. (Jeter Hall was called Dormitory No. 1.)

Thomas Memorial Hall is a residence hall built in the Collegiate Gothic style. It has three full floors and two tower floors and contains 70 rooms. The hall houses 108 students. It is fully air-conditioned with hall baths, laundry and bicycle storage facilities, as well as recreational and presentation lounges.

In 1915 the building was named for James Thomas, Jr., a Richmond tobacconist. Thomas was a charter member of the Richmond College Board of Trustees. He was one of Richmond’s first millionaires and a significant donor to the Virginia Baptist Seminary and Richmond College. Thomas was a supporter or of the Richmond Female Institute, which became the Woman’s College of Richmond, and which was then absorbed into Westhampton College. It was James Thomas, Jr. who gave the college $5,000 in 1866, allowing it to reopen following the devastation of the Civil War. Thomas died on October 8, 1882. The Museum and Art Hall on the old downtown campus was named in honor of Thomas in recognition of his contributions to Richmond College.

During World War I, Thomas Hall was used as a base hospital for soldiers returning from France, and Jeter Hall was used to house the nurses who staffed the hospital. Throughout most of World War II, the building housed Navy V-12 students, who took college courses during their military training on campus. During the 1945-1946 academic year, Thomas Hall was used as a residence for women due to the lack of residential space on the Westhampton side of campus.

The interior of Thomas Hall has been renovated several times, but the Virginia Baptist Historical Society does not have information about the earliest renovations. Most likely these involved reconfiguring floor space to create new rooms, replacing furniture, and updating wiring and plumbing. Thomas Hall underwent a major renovation in the summer of 1973, at a cost of $1,400,000. Another renovation took place over the summer of 1987. New windows and ceilings were installed; the electrical system was modernized; the heating system was upgraded; air conditioning was installed; and new furniture and bathroom fixtures were put in.

Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, residents of Thomas Hall painted murals in the hallways and public spaces of the building. These included representations of Spiderman, Doonesbury’s Zonker, and Pink Floyd album covers (including “The Wall”). A Collegian article from April 1987 notes that some residents of the hall were upset about the murals being painted over with upcoming renovations.

Residence Hall No. 3 (formerly Freeman Hall)

Site: On the north side of campus, encircled by Whitehurst, Moore Hall, Dennis Hall and Wood Hall
Dedication: October 30, 1965
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 25,965 square feet
Cost: $475,000
Major Renovation: 1989

Residence Hall No. 3 (formerly Freeman Hall) opened in 1965 as a residence hall for men, housing 107 students. It is named in honor Douglas Southall Freeman, an important figure in the history of the University. Freeman was a 1904 graduate of Richmond College, a trustee from 1925 to 1950, and served as Rector from 1934 to 1950.

Freeman was born on May 16, 1886. He entered Richmond College in 1901 at the age of 15. While attending he served as editor of The Messenger the student run literary magazine. He was encouraged to study history by Professor Samuel Mitchell and decided to pursue it. He received a Ph.D. in history from Johns Hopkins University in 1908. A noted historian, he authored five books during his lifetime. He completed a biography of Robert E. Lee in 1934, 19 years after he began writing it. George Washington’s biography was published d in 1953. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Literature in 1934 for the Lee biography and posthumously in 1954 for the Washington biography.

Groundbreaking for the three-story Collegiate Gothic-style building took place on September 30, 1964 during a time of campus expansion. It was the fourth residence hall built in a period of nine years, a response to the steady increase in enrollment and in residential students. At the time, commuting students accounted for 30% of enrollment. President Modlin predicted that by the end of the 1960s only about 20% would not live on campus.

The building was unnamed when construction began, but it was dedicated to Freeman on opening. The dedication ceremony took place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, October 30, 1965. James J. Kilpatrick, editor of the Richmond News Leader spoke.


UR website
VBHS building file
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Collegian 1965, 1978

Richmond Hall

Site: East side of Gumenick Quadrangle
Dedication: October 24, 1930
Architect: Charles M. Robinson Architects; Cram and Ferguson, consulting architects
Size: 24,520 square feet
Cost: $45,515
Major Renovations: 1977, by Caudill, Rowlett and Scott

Richmond Hall is one of three of the University’s original “science group,” composed of the chemistry building (Puryear Hall), the physics building (Richmond Hall), and the biology building (Maryland Hall). The three buildings are connected by a cloister that emphasizes the Gothic style, which is not as pronounced in these buildings as it is in other campus structures. According to Reuben Alley the building was named Richmond Hall in honor of a successful fund raising campaign.

The building was dedicated at a ceremony held at 11:15 a.m. on Friday, October 24, 1930. President Karl T. Compton, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology delivered the address. A conference of visiting scientists was held that afternoon followed by a lecture by Dr. Roscoe H. Spencer, director of the Hygiene Laboratory of the U.S. Public Health Service. Dr. Spencer was a University of Richmond alumnus, graduating in 1909. Dr. Spencer’s lecture presented information on his ground breaking work on Rocky Mountain Fever for which he had received an award from the American Medical Association.

When it opened, Richmond Hall housed the Physics department and provided temporary space for art students to work. Prior to moving into Richmond Hall, the Physics department had been housed in temporary quarters in Puryear Hall.

When the Gottwald Science Center opened in 1977, the science departments moved there.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
UR website
VBHS building file

Robins School of Business Building

Site: On the north side of campus, on Gateway Road near the north entrance to campus
Construction began: October 15, 1960
Completed: November 4, 1961
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 48,000 square feet
Major Renovations: 1982, 1998

At his death in 1952, L. U. Noland a prominent Virginia businessman left a bequest of $250,000 to the University for the construction a business school building. This gift provided seed money with the remainder of the funds needed to complete the project being raised over the next several years.

The building is of red brick trimmed with limestone and continues the Cram tradition. The new business school building was much needed and long anticipated. Classes had been held for years in the “temporary” V-12 Barracks Building. In an October 14, 1960 article the Collegian reports that the building will cost $600,000. The construction contract was awarded to Conquest, Moncure and Dunn.

The building included a large auditorium or assembly room, classrooms, faculty offices, dean’s office, placement office, student lounge, faculty lounge, and an air conditioned conference and lecture room with audio visual facilities. Dean Robbins envisioned the facilities being used by area businessmen and a summertime executive development program.

On September 5, 1979, at the opening convocation of the university’s sesquicentennial observance it was announced that the Business School had been named in honor of E. Claiborne Robins. This was done to honor “a patron of the University of Richmond whose dedication and commitment has been surpassed by no one in the history of higher education,” according to President Heilman. Robins was a 1931 graduate of the University and chairman of the board of A. H. Robins, a pharmaceutical manufacturing firm.

In 1984, a $3 million, 15,000 square foot addition was completed. It included 13 faculty offices, four classrooms, a new dean’s suite, a student computer room, an audiovisual area, and new carpet , paint and furniture for the entire building. The old dean’s suite was converted to a faculty lounge. The new space was dedicated on Saturday, October 27, 1984, during Homecoming Weekend.

In 1998-99 another renovation project was undertaken. Members of the planning committee visited 12 of the nation’s top business schools to view their facilities. This project did not involve expansion of the building. The auditorium was converted to classroom space, the atrium extended, and a new entrance was added. Technology in the building was upgraded and a computer lab was equipped. All classrooms were furnished with a multi-media instructor’s station. Two classrooms were provided with video conferencing capability. Eight classrooms were completed for fall 1998, with the remainder of the renovations being completed in spring 1999. Most faculty were moved to temporary offices in Sarah Brunet during the construction.


UR website
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Collegian 1960-61, 1984, 1998-99

Robins Stadium

Site: On the north side of campus next to the Robins Center and behind Sarah Brunet Hall
Completed: August 2010
Dedication: Oct. 23, 2010
Major Renovations:

After 81 years of competing at City Stadium, located five miles from campus, Spider football returned to campus with the opening of Robins Stadium in 2010. Construction on the stadium began the same December day that the football team stepped off the bus from Chattanooga, Tenn. — returning home as 2008 national champions.

Several considerations came together to make Robins Stadium, from increasing student involvement in games to smart use of existing facilities, such as the playing field. The field was constructed using the same low-maintenance synthetic turf on which the Super Bowl and World Series are played.

Another consideration was working with available space to build an appropriately sized stadium. The result was an 8,700-seat stadium with a backdrop of familiar sights for alumni fans. Additional features included a 20-by-35-foot scoreboard with instant replay capability, televisions throughout the concourse, and luxury suites. Remaining true to the rest of the architectural theme on campus, the façade of the seating in Robins Stadium is red brick with white trim.

The inaugural Robins Stadium home opener was held on Sept. 18, 2010. Festivities included welcoming Spider football alumni to officially unveil national championship, Tangerine Bowl, conference championship, and playoff banners; the National Anthem sung by UR alumnae and then-star of The Lion King on Broadway, Chauntee Schuler; the official game ball delivered by skydivers; the debut of SpiderVision and the team’s entrance video; a welcome from university president Edward Ayers on SpiderVision; and a ceremonial coin toss by members of the Robins Stadium. The official dedication of the Robins Stadium was held on Oct. 23, before the Spiders hosted Towson University during Homecoming Weekend.

In October 2011, the U.S. Green Building Council awarded Robins Stadium its LEED Silver certification in recognition of environmentally friendly design and construction. The Robins Stadium included numerous features, including a cool roof that reflects solar energy; low-flow water fixtures and artificial turf that reduced water use; nearly half of construction materials were harvested and manufactured within 500 miles of campus; and 90 percent of aluminum bleachers and 20 percent of overall construction materials were recycled.

Robins Athletic Center

Site: Northwest side of campus off of College Road
Official Opening: December 2, 1972
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 320,000 square feet
Major Renovations:

The need for an athletic facility had been identified many years before the Robins Athletic Center opened. Students were especially thrilled by the news that the Robins family had agreed to fund the construction and it was finally going to be a reality. A May 22, 1970 article in the Collegian acknowledges that the Robins family agreed to fully fund the new facility even though the cost was going to be significantly higher than originally expected. The article states, “The Robins family has been a most benevolent benefactor, and we are most grateful for the aid that they have given our school. With the help they have given us the University of Richmond has the economic resources to grow into one of the finest private colleges in the East.”

The new athletic complex cost approximately $10 million to build. It was built to house a 9,200 seat basketball arena, a press box, a six lane swimming pool, handball and squash courts, wrestling facilities, and Olympic weight-room, an auxiliary gym with two intramural basketball courts, sauna and steam baths, and offices for physical education and coaching staffs. It was a world class facility and was expected to help improve the sports programs and student morale. A January 8, 1971 Collegian article expressed dismay that the new facility did not include an indoor track.

For 25 years prior to the opening of the Robins Center the basketball team played their “home’ games at various locations around the city including, the Armory, the Richmond Coliseum, the Richmond Arena, and Benedictine High School. Coach Mills was quoted as saying that the basketball “players never felt they had a home before.” Now they would have a home arena that was the “best in the South.” The original projected date for opening of the new facility was June 1, 1972 but strikes by both the plumbers and brick masons coupled with bad weather delayed the opening almost 6 months. The superintendent of the project for the construction firm Doyle and Russell was William K. Baisor. He pushed to have the facility ready for the team to have two weeks to practice before their first game.

The opening event was held on Saturday, December 2, 1972 with a men’s basketball game against the University of Maryland. Richmond was defeated 82-50. The new arena, trimmed in red and blue was filled with Spider fans. Dr. Heilman christened the facility saying that the Robins Center would serve “as a lasting tribute to and a constant reminder of the A. H. Robins family who donated $10 million for the finest facility of its kind in the South and who have helped the University in so many other ways.” The Robins family received a standing ovation from the crowd eager to express their gratitude.

E. Claiborne Robins, Jr. tossed out the first ball of the game. Frank Soden, introduced prospective football and basketball recruits to at half-time. Maryland coach, Lefty Drisell, praised the new facility saying, “this is really going to help Richmond” Prior to the opening night game there had been some concern about parking and traffic issues related to large crowds coming and going from the stadium at the same time. Chief Dillard estimated that over 2000 cars were parked on campus lots for the event and everything went smoothly. It was stated that everyone exited the campus within 15 minutes of the game being over.

On Monday, December 4, 1972 the University held a “Press Day.” Over 75 reporters attended which included lunch and a tour of the Robins Center. President Heilman, Athletic Director Frank Jones, and E. Claiborne Robins hosted the media. Robins was quoted as saying, “Now we have the best basketball facility in the nation.”

E. Claiborne Robins was born in 1910 and graduated from Richmond College in 1931. He married Lora McGlasson from Waco, Texas in 1938. He built the A. H. Robins Company in to one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. Members of the Robins family have been Richmond’s greatest benefactors. In 1969 the family announced a gift of $50 million to the University. In addition to the Robins Athletic Center the family supported the construction of Robins Memorial Hall, Lora Robins Court, and the Lora Robins Gallery of Designs from Nature.


UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1972
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971

Robins Hall - Martha Elizabeth Taylor Robins Memorial Hall

Site: On the north side of the lake, near the Robins Center , faces Sarah Brunet Hall
Construction began: Summer, 1958
Completed: May 16, 1959
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 32,151 square feet
Major Renovations:

Robins Memorial Hall was erected relatively soon after Wood Hall was completed in 1956 in order to address rising enrollments. The building was dedicated as a memorial to Martha Elizabeth Taylor Robins, the mother of E. Claiborne Robins. Mr. Robins was a 1931 graduate of Richmond College, a University trustee, and president of A. H. Robins Co., Inc. Rueben Alley reports that the cost of the building was $384,818. In addition to Robins Memorial Hall the Robins family supported the construction of the Robins Athletic Center, Lora Robins Court, and the Lora Robins Gallery of Designs from Nature.

The building was intended to house about 80 male students and a new infirmary. The infirmary had two exam rooms, four isolation rooms and three wards for sick students. Dr. J. Langdon Moss was the University physician.


UR website
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Collegian 1958-59

South Court

Site: South side of campus, off of Keller Road
Construction began: February, 1946, but due to WWII, steel was not available until fall.
Completed: April, 1948
Architects: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 38,507 square feet
Major Renovations:

In 1945, the construction of a new women’s residence hall was approved. As enrollments increased in Richmond and Westhampton College over the years dormitory space became an issue. In 1944, two fraternity houses were turned into housing for women; and women were housed in Thomas Hall. Even so, some students were turned away due to a lack of available rooms.

When it opened in April, 1948 the new building, named South Court, would house approximately 119 students. It contained 42 double rooms, 10 triple rooms, and five singles for students. Every two rooms on the first and second floor were connected by a private bath. The third floor had two “public” baths. There were parlors on the first floor for entertaining visitors, a kitchen, a supply room, housekeeper’s quarter, etc. Each floor had two phones for the use of the residents. There were two suites, one for the Dean of the College and the other for the Dormitory Director.

The full basement housed five classrooms, a recreation room and an art room. A tower room served as an additional recreation room.

The building was renovated in 1977, and 1988. Basement classrooms were converted to rooms for students. In 2003 the building was converted to a residence hall for men and air conditioned.


Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
UR website
Collegian 1946 - 1948

Special Programs Building

Site: East side of campus, near River Road entrance
Completed: 1963
Architect: Carneal and Johnston
Size: 22,000 square feet
Major Renovations:

In early 1963 the Virginia Institute for Scientific Research moved to the University of Richmond campus from the Robinson House on the grounds of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. The VISR moved into a building on campus at 6300 River Road which it leased from the University. The building was named the Allen T. Gwathney Laboratory of the Virginia Institute for Scientific Research in honor of the founder of the VISR. In October 1963, the University organized a symposium to highlight the occasion. Dr. Carroll M Williams a Harvard University biologist and alumnus of the University of Richmond gave a talk on research he was conducting on the potential use of light for insect pest control.

The VISR and Richmond collaborated on research projects. An Environmental Research Center, staffed by both the University and VISR, was established in 1971. The VISR conducted research in the natural sciences under industrial and federal contracts. In November 1972 there was an explosion and fire in a laboratory in the building. This incident destroyed equipment, samples, and notes and set back research. Dr. Gillespie, director of the institute, estimated the cost of the loss at between $50,000 and $60,000.

In 1975 the University took over the loan on the Gwathney Building and assumed operation of it. The University agreed to allow the VISR remain for a period of time. The VISR offices were moved to North Court. The print shop, Summer School, and Graduate School operations moved to the first floor of the building. There was one classroom, the science library, psychology labs, an animal facility, and some unfinished space on the second floor.


UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1963 - 2000

Steam Plant

Site: Southeast end of Westhampton Lake east of Tyler Haynes Commons
Begun: January 2, 1914
Completed: August, 1914
Architect: Ralph Adams Cram of Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson; Carneal & Johnston (supervising architects)
Size: 8,410 square feet
Cost: $30,597
Major Renovations:

The Steam Plant was among the original buildings constructed on the Westhampton campus. According to Ralph Adams Cram’s original plan, the Steam Plant and the president’s house were both to have been built at the eastern end of Westhampton Lake. Cram’s plans for the president’s house did not materialize because of financial issues, but the Steam Plant was a necessity for the campus.

Work began on the Steam Plant on January 2, 1914, and the building was finished in August of that year. The fixtures were installed by W.B. Catlett Electric Company, and the plumbing by C. Manning Plumbing Company.

In 1970, the concrete area between the Steam Plant and what is now Tyler Hanes Commons was constructed to prevent erosion. At the time, there was a bridge at the site, which the Commons replaced.

The Steam Plant burns coal for fuel. Staff maintain and operate the facility 24 hours a day. It provides steam (at 75 psig) for the campus HVAC systems, as well as hot water for the buildings. More than one mile of tunnels house the steam pipes and condensate return system, as well as conduits for high voltage electrical lines and telecommunications cables. Originally the tunnels distributed high temperature water, but between 1955 and 1956, that system was converted to the current steam system. The steam returns to the Steam Plant for reuse. The Steam Plant does not produce the campus’s electricity, which is purchased from a power company.


Ralph Adams Cram, the University of Richmond, and the Gothic Style Today by Edwin J. Slipek, Jr., p. 30
Reports from the Committee on New Buildings, 1914 (VBHS)
The Collegian, 2 October 1970; 20 October 1988; 18 April 2002
UR website

Student Activities Complex

Site: South side of Westhampton Lake, on Westhampton Way
Completed: October 2012
Size: 1,500 square feet (The Web)
Dedication: October 26, 2012
Cost: $5 million
Major Renovations:

The student activities complex, a set of nine buildings and a courtyard that provide space for activities of student organizations and sororities, open in October 2012.

The complex comprises:

  • Cottage Court – Eight individual cottages, one dedicated to each of the university’s seven sororities and one for use by any other student organization. Sororities use their cottages for sisterhood activities, alumni and educational programs, ritual events, recruitment activities, and to display their awards, symbols and composites.
  • Spider Cottage, part of Cottage Court, provides meeting space, a kitchen, and access to Cottage Courtyard. It is available for use by any campus club or organization.
  • Cottage Courtyard – An enclosed, landscaped area surrounded by Cottage Court and equipped with a sound system to facilitate creative and innovative planning for all students.
  • The Web – A 1,500-square-foot student center with two meeting rooms and a large open area available for a variety of student programs, meetings, and events. Equipped with a kitchen, the building also serves as a conference center during the summer.

Members of sororities were involved in planning the seven sorority cottages, and student leaders assisted in planning the main activities building and small Spider Cottage.

Tyler Haynes Commons

Site: Spanning northeast end of Westhampton Lake
Opening: September, 1976
Dedication: April 22, 1977
Naming Ceremony: December 13, 1984 (named Tyler Haynes Commons)
Architect: Charles Nixon
Designer: John Powell of Caudill, Rowlett, and Scott
Size: Approx. 65,000 square feet
Cost: $4.7 million, plus $200,000 for original furnishings
Major Renovations:

In March 1973, Dr. William H. Leftwich, Director of Student Services initiated a planning effort to outline the goals and priorities for a new University Commons building. He expected the planning effort to take about a year and half and wanted to begin in order to be positioned to move forward with the project once funds became available. Dean Richard A. Mateer was named the coordinator of the University Commons Steering Committee. Caudill, Rowlett and Scott, known as CRS, of Houston, Texas was hired to be the architectural firm. Steering committee members, and representatives of CRS started meeting with alumni, representatives of campus organizations and students to collect information and ideas in early November 1973. Building planning began shortly thereafter. Construction Management Associates was hired to manage the bidding process and supervise the contractors. Lucky McCombs was the site superintendent for the company.

In January 1974 barges were floated on Westhampton lake and twelve test borings were taken to determine the consistency of the lake bed. In February 1974 a large group of residents near the campus raised strong objections to what they believed would be serious traffic problems created as a result of the construction project. The Richmond Board of Zoning Appeals postponed their decision for 30 days to allow time for discussion. A zoning exception was needed to construct the Commons because of its height. Representatives of the Three Chopt Road Civic Associate were the most outspoken against the building. In March 1974 the University received an unconditional permit to begin construction after Rector Lewis T. Booker agreed to the closing of Ridgeway Road and Roselawn Road east of the campus.

The lake was drained in August 1974 to remove silt in preparation for the construction project. Officials expected to find two to three feet of silt but found closer to ten feet. Students were cautioned to stay off of the lakebed.

In February 1975 the bridge across the lake was closed for pedestrian and vehicle traffic. Pedestrian traffic was routed in front of the chapel, down by the Steam Plant, and up near where Gottwald Science Center stands today. Vehicles had to drive around the outside of campus. William F. Rhodes, business manager, estimated that nearly 400 cars drove across the bridge every day. In much earlier days, up until the early 1940s, a gate was installed on the bridge. It was locked every night based on campus curfew rules.

Frequent rainfall in the summer of 1975 caused delays in the project. Eleven inches of rain fell in July during a two-week period. Flooding washed away dirt arount the foundation pilings and heavy equipment became stuck in the mud. More than 60 pilings were set in granite in the bed of the lake to support the building.

The Commons offered symbolic and physical proof that the two Colleges were to be seen as part of a single institution. Merging of the Richmond and Westhampton academic departments was completed around the same time that the Commons was built.

In October 1975 construction began on two foot bridges that spanned the lake and met on the island. The bridges opened about two months later. Architect James Buck designed this project which included a gazebo on the island, a paved walkway around the lake, and new plantings. Total cost of the project was about $70,000.

Funding for the Commons came from the capital improvements campaign called “Our Time in History,” which was initiated in 1972 to raise $50 million. Of that amount, $30 million was to be used for construction, $20 million for scholarships and academic needs. Many funders contributed to the Commons, in particular Rector and Mrs. Lewis T. Booker and Mr. and Mrs. Howard L. Jenkins, Jr.

When first built the building was referred to as the University Commons Building, or the Student Commons. In 1984 it was dedicated in honor of W. Tyler Haynes a Richmond College graduate, class of 1922. Since that time it has been called Tyler Haynes Commons. Haynes was a trustee and a strong advocate of student causes who served as chairman of the Student Affairs Committee. A plaque in his honor was first placed inside the building; and is now at the north entrance to the Commons.

The exterior of the Commons conforms but not strictly to the Collegiate Gothic style that is dominant on campus. When the Commons opened in September 1976, The Collegian wrote that “the new building represents the best of both worlds. Its exterior blends harmoniously with the architectural plan of the university, not disrupting its celebrated Gothic beauty.” The interior of the building is functional, but there is a magnificent view of the lake from the ground and first floors as you walk through the concourse. The windows extend up through the third floor, providing lake views for the offices on that side. There is a spillway at the rear of the building to accommodate the lake’s overflow in heavy rains.

The Commons provides large areas for games and informal dining, lounges, student activities, student government, student publications, the campus radio station, and the bookstore. The building contains the Office of Student Activities, the Office of Student Affairs, and One-Card Services. On the third floor is the L. Howard Jenkins Trustees’ Suite, which was given by L. Howard Jenkins, Jr. and his wife Helen Scott Jenkins in memory of Mr. Jenkins’s father, L. Howard Jenkins, Sr. Jenkins, Sr. was a member of the Board and the son of Luther H. Jenkins, who funded the Jenkins Greek Theater. The L. Howard Jenkins Trustees’ Suite was dedicated in fall 1976. There is a large room on the first floor named for Alice Haynes who was the wife of Tyler Haynes. The Alice Haynes room serves as the site for many University wide gatherings, faculty meetings, and parties.

The fast food restaurant on the ground floor was initially called the Dry Dock, which had been the name of the luncheonette in what is now Weinstein Hall. In 1987, the name of the dining area was changed to The Pier, and a program called the Coffeehouse was created as a place for students to socialize and eat. The Coffeehouse venue was the dining area, it was meant to provide entertainment and provide an alternative to fraternity social life. The class of 1987 pledged more than $30,000 to pay for a stage in the Coffeehouse area.

The fast-food restaurant in the Commons has been renamed Tyler’s Grill, although the dining area itself is still referred to as the Pier. The campus pub, The Cellar, is also located on the ground floor.


UR website
VBHS building file
Collegian 1973 - 1977

Weinstein Hall

Site: Southwest corner of Stern Plaza, adjacent to the Jepson School of Leadership Studies
Dedication: October 26, 1951 (as the Richmond College Student Activities Building)
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Original Size: 17,250 square feet
Dedication: October 16, 2003
Weinstein Hall: Project duration 2001-2003
Architect: Scribner Messer Brady & Wade
Size: 53,000 square feet
Cost: $12.1 million
Major Renovations: At least two interior renovations between 1952 and 1997

Weinstein Hall has undergone a major transformation in its recent history. Incorporated in the current building is the former Richmond College Student Activities Building which opened as a stand alone structure in 1951. This earlier structure was also sometimes referred to as the Alumni-Student Center, since the Richmond College alumni offices were located there. Eventually it was known simply as the Student Center, or SC on campus maps

There had long been a need for a student center on the north side of campus. Originally it served primarily male students but was open to all students. The project was delayed by World War II, during which time the number of male students decreased while the number of female students increased. In 1943, a fundraising effort asked Richmond College alumni to contribute the final $10,000 (of an estimated cost of $100,000) needed to build the student center, suggesting that donations could be made in War Bonds as well as cash. It was not until summer 1947 that The Alumni Bulletin was able to announce that “Student Center Gets Green Light.” The new building was described as a student center, a headquarters for student organizations, and also the site of Richmond College’s alumni affairs office. As with Westhampton’s Social Center, the building was meant to be of particular benefit to day or commuting students, allowing them to engage in campus life beyond the classroom. Lockers would be installed where day students could leave their books and personal property. The expected date of the building’s completion was September 1950.

The building was actually dedicated on October 25, 1951, during Homecoming Weekend. However, except for the College Shop, the building was not fully functional until February 1952, when all the furniture had been installed. The final cost for the building, including furnishings, was $300,000.

A brochure written to promote the Student Center describes the amenities and rooms in the four-story building. The first (ground-level) floor contained the post office and the College Shop, which included a luncheonette called The Dry Dock. The College Shop was described as “a cool place where you may eat a snack, drink a ‘coke’ or buy a pencil or notebook.” The second floor of the building had a barber shop, lavatories, a faculty lounge, and alumni offices. The third floor had a memorial lounge (presumably to honor Richmond alumni), a recreation room, a conference room for student meetings, and the office of the director of the building. The fourth floor contained offices for student publications. The campus radio station was eventually located in the building as well.

After the Tyler Haynes Commons opened in 1976, the former Student Center as converted to a primarily academic building and was referred to as the Political Science/Military Science Building, or PS/MS. Beginning in May 1997, the building was extensively renovated and fitted with new classrooms and office space for Political Science. Military Science was relocated to Millhiser Gym. Human Resources moved from Maryland Hall to the Political Science Building, taking over the space that had been occupied by the campus police department. The latter moved to the Special Programs Building, where the School of Continuing Studies is located.

On October 2000, the Board approved a plan to significantly expand the Political Science Building creating the Center for the Social Sciences. The newest part of the structure would be located on the south side of the original building.

Weinstein Hall, which was dedicated on October 16, 2003, is named in honor of its generous benefactors – the Weinstein family. The philanthropy of Richmond’s Weinstein family grew to over $14 million during the course of the project. Marcus Weinstein, R’49; his wife, Carole, W’75 and G’77; their daughter and University trustee, Allison Weinstein; and son-in-law Ivan Jecklin together made the new center for the social sciences possible. Philip D. Weinstein, brother of Marcus Weinstein, gave $1 million for construction of a memorial garden. Allison Weinstein and Jecklin announced an additional gift of $500,000 for a Speech Center. Mr. and Mrs. Jay M. Weinberg pledged $250,000 for creation of a Debate Center. Mr. and Mrs. Claude R. Davenport Jr. pledged $250,000 for an Integrative Journalism Center.

“The generosity of the Weinstein family and its friends will create a legacy of educational excellence and service to this campus, the Richmond area and the country,” said President William E. Cooper at the groundbreaking ceremony. “It is a magnificent demonstration of their faith in the power of higher education to contribute to the life of the community.”

The 53,000-square-foot building provides state-of-the-art quarters for the university's journalism, political science, sociology-anthropology and rhetoric-communication studies departments. The facility also houses the university's Speech Center, Debate Center and Integrative Journalism Center. Among Weinstein Hall's unusual features are a sunken entry garden, restoration of an original commons room and state-of-the-art facilities for teaching and research in the social sciences. The exterior features cloistered walks, carved limestone and Oriel windows. A central tower unifies the architectural composition.

Situated at the southwest corner of Stern Plaza, the structure is adjacent to the Jepson School of Leadership Studies. An arched passage through the building aligns Whitehurst Hall with the statue of E. Claiborne Robins. When a planned expansion of Boatwright Library is completed, the resulting academic plaza will be among the most distinctive quadrangles to be found among the world’s great colleges and universities The new structure incorporates the former Political Science building and added 38,000 square feet of new classrooms, labs, research suites, meeting rooms and faculty offices, all in the university's signature collegiate gothic architectural style.

Marcus and Carole Weinstein, daughter Allison Weinstein, son-in-law Ivan Jecklin, and Phillip Weinstein, Marcus Weinstein’s brother, took part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Weinstein Hall opened for classes with the start of the fall semester in 2003.

The university followed guidelines of the U.S. Green Building Council and earned LEED (Leadership, Energy and Environmental Design) certification on this project. Among its environmentally friendly features are a system that monitors and adjusts fresh air entering the building to improve comfort and save energy; special parking spaces for carpool and alternative fuel vehicles, including plug-ins for recharging electric motors; and special mats at major entrances to remove dirt from shoes. The contractor also used recycled steel and other recycled contents. All materials, such as paint and carpeting, were selected for their low volatile organic compounds, which reduce allergy-related problems for people working in the building.

Marcus Weinstein is the son of Abraham H. and Minnie Roth Weinstein. He is an alumnus of the University graduating in 1949. Mr. Weinstein majored in Psychology. Mr. Weinstein is married to Carole Louise Weinstein, daughter of Morris J. and Bertha J. Milstein. She is a university alumna graduating in 1975 and earning a Master’s Degree in 1977. Carole Weinstein formerly taught at St. Catherine’s School in Richmond and has served as an adjunct professor of English at the University. She served on the University’s Board of Trustee’s from 1988 to 1992. Marcus Weinstein is the chairman and former president of Weinstein Management, a large real estate and land development company in Richmond, VA. Allison Page Weinstein, daughter of Marcus and Carole is the current president of Weinstein Management. Allison Weinstein is married to Ivan Jecklin. Allison currently serves on the University Board of Trustees. Marcus Weinstein has served as a chairperson for the University’s annual fund, has served on the Board of Associates and is a member of the Rector’s Club and Founders. Both Marcus and Carole have been awarded honorary degrees, Marcus, the Doctor of Commercial Science degree in 2002, and Carole, the Doctor of Letters degree in 2004.

The Weinstein family has supported the University of Richmond for nearly 30 years, funding the Minnie Roth Weinstein Scholarship and the Carole M. Weinstein Chair of International Education, the Weinstein Family Endowed Chair in Social Sciences, establishing the Lind Lawrence Scholarship in memory of Marcus’ friend and benefactor, and donating the Chancellor's home. Along with fellow Richmond residents Fannie and Gilbert Rosenthal, the Weinsteins also established a chair in Jewish and Christian studies at the university.

In addition, the Weinsteins have contributed toward the Wilton Interfaith Center, Joseph A. Jennings Chair in Business, the Burhans Civic Fellows, community service activities in the chaplain’s office, and the public radio program "A Moment in Time," which is produced and nationally syndicated by Richmond history professor Dan Roberts. The Weinsteins also provided key support that brought acclaimed opera diva Roberta Peters to the campus for a performance.


UR website
VBHS building file

Weinstein International Center - Carole Weinstein International Center

Site: On Richmond Way, across from Sarah Brunet Memorial Hall
Completed: Fall 2010
Size: 57,000 square feet
Architect: Glavé & Holmes Architecture
Dedication: Oct. 14, 2010
Cost: $20.45 million
Major Renovations:

The Carole Weinstein International Center opened as a dedicated home for the university’s international program.

Designed by Glavé & Holmes Architecture in keeping with the campus’s other Collegiate Gothic buildings, the center will serve as a metaphor for global education. A central courtyard reflects the intersection of countries and cultures from around the world and the cross-disciplinary role of international education in the university’s five schools. A globe fountain and surrounding mandala made of tiles from 48 countries is the central feature.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony in October 2010 celebrated the the $10.5 million gift from the center’s namesake and featured brief remarks by Carole Weinstein, university President Edward L. Ayers, Rector Charles A. Ledsinger Jr., Dean and Carole M. Weinstein Chair of International Education Uliana Gabara, student Gabrielle Misiewicz and history professor Hugh A. West. That evening, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman addressed an audience of invited guests, faculty, staff and students at Alice Jepson Theatre in the university’s Modlin Center for the Arts.

Mrs. Weinstein helped propel much of the growth of the university’s international education program during the 20 years leading up to the building’s opening. A prominent local philanthropist, she earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English, as well as an honorary degree, from Richmond. She funded scholarships for Richmond students to study abroad and supported a variety of international education and research programs at the university, as well as international students. In 2003, she created the Carole M. Weinstein Chair of International Education.

The International Center’s design embodies Weinstein’s belief that international perspective is vital to international cooperation and prosperity. “It symbolizes openness to the study of other cultures, other values, other legal systems, and other business and leadership models. It is a beacon to those who travel here from the far corners of the world to study with us and be part of our campus family,” she said. “Equally important, the center is a launching place from which we send out our own students and faculty around the globe to share themselves with their host families and academic institutions, and to return home with an expanded frame of reference.”

The center featured an array of technology to facilitate collaborative teaching and research between Richmond and its 65 partner universities in other countries. Live satellite links permitted faculty and students in Richmond to participate virtually in lectures and courses at universities outside the United States, as well as engage in real-time discussions with their counterparts almost anywhere. It also featured seven high-tech classrooms, performance and meeting spaces, and the international cuisine of the Passport Café.

In addition to housing the Office of International Education, the building hosted the departments of Geography and the Environment, Latin American and Iberian Studies, and Modern Literatures and Cultures, as well as interdisciplinary programs that address global issues.

In October 2015, the U.S. Green Building Council awarded the Carole Weinstein International Center with LEED Gold certification, making it the second on campus to achieve the accreditation. The international center’s unique sustainability featured include a freeze tank cooling system that abundantly available energy is used to freeze tanks of water at night and use the ice to cool the building the day; 50 percent reduced water usage for landscaping; 92 percent of construction waste was reused or recycled; 10 percent of building materials were harvested or manufactured within 500 miles of campus; and all indoor spaces have adjustable thermostats and lighting, as well as ample natural light.

Weinstein Center for Recreation and Wellness

Site: On the north side of the lake, adjacent to the Robins Center
Completed: January 2007
Architect: Worley Associates Architects
Size: 90,000 square feet
Cost: $13.5 million
Major Renovations:

The opening of the Weinstein Center for Recreation and Wellness in January 2007 showcased the university’s commitment to the comprehensive wellbeing of students, faculty, and staff.

The 90,000-square-foot facility featured a three-court gymnasium; an elevated 1/10 mile jogging track; fitness assessment and massage therapy rooms; a two-level fitness center; locker rooms and saunas; and a natatorium.

The center was one of only five facilities in the country to receive the 2008 National Intramural Recreation Sports Association Outstanding Sports Facility award.

In February 2011, the Weinstein Center was certified LEED Gold by the U.S. Green Building Council, citing such construction highlights as 60 percent of new wood materials harvested from FSC-certified forests; 90 percent of construction debris diverted from a landfill; and 100 percent recycled steel used in construction.

Westhampton Hall

Site: South side of Westhampton Lake, on Westhampton Way
Completed: August 2014
Major Renovations:

More than 300 students returned to campus in 2014 to live in one of two new residence halls — Westhampton Hall and Gateway Village.

Westhampton Hall housed both men and women in 110 suite-style rooms; however, the 16 different room types ranged from single rooms with a hall bath to suites that share a bathroom. Each floor featured a community space lounge. The first floor included a multi-purpose room, and study space and sitting areas are at the end of the first three floors. Westhampton Hall also included space for a college fellow, a live-in faculty member who plans programs that connect the curricular and co-curricular experience.

The building’s brick and limestone exterior was designed to score a LEED certification. The plants and flowers surrounding the new dorm were all native to Virginia.


Site: North side of campus, off of Richmond Way
Completed: Fall, 1998
Architect: Marcellus Wright, Cox and Smith
Size: 11,000 square feet
October 29, 1998
Major Renovations:

This building was designed to be both a gateway and the “living room” of the Richmond College community. Whitehurst houses the Richmond College Dean’s Office and provides social and meeting space for all University of Richmond students.

The architecture of Whitehurst is modeled after Thomas Hall and Jeter Hall, two of the original campus buildings. It features the same distinctive brick and limestone construction with stucco and half-timbering, a slate roof and attractive copper details. Whitehurst also boasts an attractive 52-foot clock tower, which chimes on the hour.

The building’s floor plan is based on historic models for porter’s lodges and gate houses. The large entry passage and tower indicate the entrance to the college. To the left of this entry passage is the section of the building that will remain open 24 hours a day for student use. It includes a game room with two billiard tables and an air hockey table, as well as an upscale vending and food service area. The residence life duty office, which is staffed every night by a resident assistant, is also located in this section. On the upper level, there are individual and group study rooms.

To the right of the passage are the building’s meeting rooms, which are located off a columned gallery that opens through three large French windows to the green beyond. The largest of the meeting rooms is a living room, which features a gas fireplace and a timbered ceiling. The adjacent medium-size meeting room will accommodate groups of 25-35, and the smaller room is intended for groups of 15-25 students.

The upper level is accessible by traversing an open stairway under the tower. The second floor houses the offices of the dean of Richmond College, along with a student study area.

In summer 1999, John Hoogakker, director of University Facilities was reading a book about the history of Alaska. He recognized the name of one of the ships that transported settlers to the new state as matching the inscription on the bell that was purchased for Whitehurst tower. The inscription read “USAT ST. MIHIEL.” Hoogakker corresponded with Gerry Keeling who was president of the historical society in Palmer, Alaska the town where the St. Mihiel docked with the colonists. The University and the historical society worked together to arrange for the bell to be removed from Whitehurst and sent to Palmer, Alaska. The university received a replacement.

Whitehurst was made possible by an estate gift from John D. Whitehurst Jr., a faithful alumnus, business leader, and distinguished citizen. Mr. Whitehurst graduated from Richmond College in 1927 and the Richmond Law School in 1931. He was born in 1905 in Moyock, North Carolina. His brothers, Lawrence R’23 and Stuart R’24 also attended the University of Richmond. Mr. Whitehurst retired in 1970 as a senior vice-president with First and Merchants Bank. He died in 1994.


UR website
VBHS building file
Whitehurst dedication program
Collegian 1998 – 2000

Wilton Center - E. Carlton Wilton Center for Interfaith Campus Ministries

Site: On Chapel Circle Road on the north side of Cannon Memorial Chapel
Dedication: March 20, 1990
Architect: Marcellus Wright, Cox and Smith
Size: Approx. 9,000 square feet
Major Renovations:

The newly completed E. Carlton Wilton Center for Interfaith Campus Ministries was dedicated at 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 20, 1990. Dr. David Burhans read the building plaque and acknowledged Mr. and Mrs. E. Carlton Wilton. A ribbon cutting ceremony followed the dedication. Joseph Jennings Rector presented the building on behalf of the Board of Trustees to President Richard Morrill. The guest speaker was Martin E. Marty a religion professor from the University of Chicago. His talk was titled, “Frontiers: Faith and Reason Revisited for the 21st Century.”

The two story building is built in a NeoGothic style and conforms well to the campus architecture and the complements Cannon Memorial Chapel. The Office of the Chaplaincy occupies the first floor along with a library room, conference room, and lounges. The lower floor contains a large reception room with a fireplace and smaller meeting rooms.

The building was name for E. Carlton Wilton, Sr. a Trustee Emeritus. The Wiltons donated $1 million dollars for the construction of the Wilton Center and have also established the E. Carlton and Betty Wilton Scholarship. Mr. Wilton was awarded an honorary Doctor of Commercial Science degree in 1999. Mrs. Wilton’s father, Carl H. Luebbert, attended University of Richmond's law school from 1912-1914. She donated three windows in the Wilton Center in his honor.


UR website
Collegian 1989 -1990
Mary Maxwell

Wood Hall - Bettie Davis Wood Hall

Site: On the north side of the lake, near Thomas Hall, Freeman Hall and Whitehurst
Construction began: October, 1955
Completed: September, 1956
Architect: Carneal & Johnston
Size: 17, 958 square feet
Major Renovations:

Increased enrollment by students wishing to live on campus led to the building of new residence halls. Bettie Davis Wood Hall was one of these, built of red brick and limestone in the Collegiate Gothic style. The building originally intended to house approximately 75 male students, included a student lounge and quarters for the dormitory director. The Wise Construction Company was engaged to build the structure. Final cost was approximately $300,000.

Bettie Davis Wood was the wife a Richmond alumnus, Dr. Judson Wood. The building was financed in part by the First Baptist Church endowment fund. Mrs. Wood was a longtime member and supporter of the church. Upon her death in 1938 First Baptist received nearly $1 million dollars from her estate.


UR website
Alley, Reuben E. History of the University of Richmond, 1830-1971
Collegian 1955-1956, 2002

Well Being Center

Major Renovations:

Historical Information Forthcoming


Queally Athletic Center

Major Renovations:

Historical Information Forthcoming