Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Riggleman Hall

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Institution Name: University of Charleston
Original/Historic Place Name: Riggleman Hall
Location on Campus: 2300 MacCorkle Ave. SE
Date(s) of Construction:
1950-1951original construction Meanor, Greife & Dailey
Designer: Meanor, Greife & Dailey
Type of Place: Individual building
Style: Modern/post-WWII, Other (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, culture, education, history, religion
Narrative: see below
References: see below
Foundation: concrete
Walls: block and brick
Roof: black rubber
ca. 1951-present (2006)administration
1951-present (2006)classrooms

Riggleman Hall was named for Leonard Riggleman, who served as President of Morris Harvey College (now University of Charleston) from 1931-1964. The Art Deco and Late Medera building reflects the wide influence of Paul Cret, the French born American architect. Features of the style evident in Riggleman Hall are: simple, clean shapes, often with a streamlined look; geometric ornament; solid, rectangular forms; and metal window casings and handrails.

The building was originally designed as the east wing of a much larger building that was never built. For all intents and purposes, Riggleman Hall was Morris Harvey College at the time of its construction as the third campus building. It was preceded by a cafeteria and gymnasium. The chapel, which no longer exists, was a visible tie to the Methodist church, by which the institution was originally founded. The beautiful Art Deco details of the entire building remain an outstanding feature. Its rotunda, lined with murals, is itself an outstanding feature.


Badger, Frank. "Architectural Notes on the University of Charleston." Typescript. Morris Harvey Archives, University of Charleston, Charleston, WV.

Griffith, Andrea D. Riggleman Hall [University of Charleston]. National Register of Historic Places nomination report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/National Park Service, 1994.

Krebs, Frank. Where There is Faith: the Morris Harvey College Story 1888-1970. Charleston, WV: MHC Publications, 1974.

Riggleman Hall [University of Charleston]. Inventory report. Charleston, WV: State Historic Preservation Office, 1994.


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Last update: November 2006