Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Miller Hall

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Institution Name: University of La Verne
Original/Historic Place Name: Miller Hall
Location on Campus: 2237 C St.
Date(s) of Construction:
1917original construction Marsh, Norman
1990renovation Wheeler & Wheeler
Designer: Norman Marsh (original); Wheeler & Wheeler (renovation architect)
Type of Place: Individual building
Style: Beaux-Arts classicism (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, history
Narrative: see below
References: see below
Foundation: poured concrete
Walls: poured concrete
Roof: clay tile mansard, built-up flat roof
ca. 1917dining hall (cafeteria in basement)
ca. 1917residence hall (women)
ca. 1980s-present (2006)academic department building (photography; religion/philosophy; English; modern languages)
ca. 1980s-present (2006)museum (Irene Carlson Gallery of Photography)
ca. 1980s-present (2006)classrooms
ca. 1980s-present (2006)administration

Miller Hall was the first building on the La Verne College campus constructed specifically for collegiate use. Prior to its completion in 1917, the entire college fit into a flamboyant three-story wooden hotel building constructed during the real estate boom of 1887 and first occupied by Lordsburg College in 1891. Miller Hall was built as a women's dormitory and also housed the cafeteria in its basement. Closed for nearly a decade because of seismic safety and access concerns, the California-style building with its neoclassical porch was on the verge of demolition in the 1980's. Community activists protested to the city, and foundationless Miller Hall instead was renovated at considerable expense into a joint use administrative, office, and classroom building. The seismic retrofitting included post-tension cabling and shear walls because the concrete in the original construction was not reinforced. Today Miller Hall is home to some oddly-shaped classrooms, created out of former dorm rooms, as well as the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, the Photography Department and photography laboratories, the Irene Carlson Galley of Photography, the Religion/Philosophy and English Departments, and most of the Modern Languages Department.


Heckman, Marlin. University of La Verne. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2001.

Hogan, Herbert W., and Gladdys E. Muir. The University of La Verne: A Centennial History: 1891-1991. La Verne, CA: University of La Verne, 1990.

Hogan, Herbert W. Years of Renewal and Growth: University of La Verne 1985-2000, the First Fifteen Years of the Presidency of Stephen C. Morgan. La Verne, CA: University of La Verne, 2001.

Muir, Gladdys E. La Verne College: Seventy-Five Years of Service. Los Angeles: La Verne College, 1967.

Polos, Nicholas. "The Rise of a University: Super-Tent," Mt. San Antonio Historian 16, no. 3 (Summer 1980): 93-105.


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