Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


H. W. Lohrenz Building

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Institution Name: Tabor College
Original/Historic Place Name: Administration Building
Location on Campus: center
Date(s) of Construction:
1920original construction Mampe, William
Designer: William Mampe
Type of Place: Individual building
Style: Beaux-Arts classicism (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, history
Narrative: see below
References: see below
Foundation: concrete
Walls: concrete which was plastered
Roof: asbestos originally, now awaplan roofing materials
ca. 1920-1960library
ca. 1920-present (2006)chapel
ca. 1920-present (2006)classrooms (including laboratories)
ca. 1920-present (2006)auditorium
ca. 1920-present (2006)administration
ca. 2004-present (2006)theater

The H.W. Lohrenz Building was built in 1920 to replace the original Tabor College building which had burned to the ground in April 1918. The new building was dramatically different from the original structure, which could have been best described as decidedly plain, simple, and unassuming. Reminiscent of period European architecture, the new administration building was built in the neoclassical Greek revival style. The front entrance with its ornate columns and urns gives the appearance of the entrance to God's temple. The four flanks of leaded glass windows comprising the east wall of the chapel in this building further augment the image of wonder and worship. The design was very much in keeping with the purpose of the college to disseminate "general culture and biblical information," making provision for "the development of body, soul, and spirit." When this massive building was constructed, the town of Hillsboro was only partially developed, with mostly modest homes; this provided such a stark contrast that the building was dubbed "Little Athens on the prairie."

William Mampe of Kansas City, Missouri served as architect for both the H.W. Lohrenz Building and the Mary J. Regier Building of Tabor College. Upon completion of the Tabor buildings, Mampe included three line sketches of the H.W. Lohrenz Building in his promotional stationery in 1921, showing the construction, the finished structure, and the portico. The stationery also featured other examples of Mampe's work: the McPherson, Kansas high school building, the Anthony, Kansas high school building, the St. Paul, Nebraska high school building, and the First Church of Christ, Scientist is Wichita, Kansas. The St. Joseph Art Glass Company of St. Joseph, Missouri designed the four panels of leaded glass windows (1280 square feet) for the chapel/auditorium of the Lohrenz Building, at a cost of $1500. The contract, outlined in September 1919, was signed by Paul H. Wolff, owner and chief designer of St. Joseph Art Glass Company, H.W. Lohrenz, Tabor College president, and Peter C. Hiebert, Tabor College vice-president.

In 1920 the three-story building housed 17 classrooms, 2 laboratories, a library, a chapel/auditorium, and administrative offices. In 1960 the building was remodeled, increasing office space, replacing wooden windows and doors with metal units, and replacing the old library with a science hall. In 1999, the building was named the H.W. Lohrenz Building, in honor of the founding president H.W. Lohrenz, who served in that official capacity for 23 years.


Prieb, Wesley J., and Don Ratzlaff. To a Higher Plane of Vision: Tabor College, The First 75 Years. Hillsboro, KS: Tabor College, 1983.

Annual Catalogue of Tabor College (1919-1920): 6-7.


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Last update: November 2006