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The original Alumni Hall was conceived by the Park College alumni to serve as a place for reunions, housing for visiting alumni, and a meeting place for various campus organizations. The plan was brought before the Park Board of Trustees under the conditions that the college would pay for the initial construction cost of $10,000 and the alumni would pay back the college with interest. The Board was rightfully concerned about whether or not the alumni would be able to pay back the loan, but with the initial fund raising bringing in over $1,000, the Trustees felt their fears were relieved. The Alumni Hall was finished in 1905, and lived up to the proposal that it would be "the handsomest building on campus."


  • The original Alumni Hall
  • The original Alumni Hall under construction
  • Under construction
  • The Alumni Hall auditorium
  • The Alumni Hall on fire
  • The new Alumni Hall

 After its construction the Alumni Hall served as one of the dining areas on campus, its kitchen able to serve one hundred and fifty students.  Along with its use as a meeting place and alumni housing it also housed the Home economics and Art Departments for several years.  The auditorium was used by the Alumni Association for its meetings and by the literary societies and Art Department, for exhibitions, presentations, and plays.  On May 6, 1957 the Alumni Hall became the victim of arson and was burned beyond repair and had to be torn down, the only salvageable piece of the building were the arches which framed the southern patio, two of these now reside in the Mabee Underground in front of one of the University's exhibit spaces.  
The new Alumni Hall was almost funded in a month with a good portion of the funds coming directly from the alumni, its construction took only a year and the reaction to the new building was mixed with many alumni aggravated that their "beautiful hall was to be replaced with a 'box."  The new Alumni Hall housed the Drama, Home Economics, and Art Departments as well as the campus theater. 

Beck, Bill. Fides et labor: 140 years of pioneering education: the story of Park University. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company Publishers, 2015.