Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Albert Hall

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Institution Name: Davis & Elkins College
Original/Historic Place Name: Science Hall
Location on Campus: 100 Campus Dr.
Date(s) of Construction:
1924original construction Martens, Walter F.
Designer: Walter F. Martens (Charleston, WV)
Type of Place: Individual building
Style: Beaux-Arts classicism (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, culture, education, history
Narrative: see below
References: see below
Foundation: limestone, sandstone
Walls: brick and stone
Roof: slate
1924-present (2006)classrooms
ca. 1970-present (2006)other (William James Career, Academic, and Personal Services Center, i.e. "CAPS")
ca. 1970-present (2006)faculty offices

Science Hall was built when the campus of Davis & Elkins College was moved from south Elkins to the newly deeded estate of Hallie Davis Elkins. It is a three-story modified Georgian revival-style building built to house classroom space. Science Hall is connected to Liberal Arts Hall by a series of graceful stone arches.

On May 22, 1956, a bolt of lightning set fire to Science Hall. Because of a lack of water pressure, the local fire department was unable to bring the blaze under control and all but the first floor and outer walls were destroyed. The emergency aroused the interest of townspeople and alumni; over $155,000 was raised to rebuild the structure, minus the pitched roof which originally matched Liberal Arts Hall. The roof was restored to its original style in the early 1980s.

In 1958, the facility was renamed in honor of a respected science professor, the late Dr. Charles E. Albert, who served on the college faculty from 1911 to 1959. In the early 1970s a new Science Center was constructed, and Albert Hall ceased to exist as the main building used to teach the sciences. It now houses faculty offices, classrooms, and the William James Career, Academic, and Personal Services (CAPS) Center.


Feller, Laura, and James H. Charleton. Davis and Elkins Historic District. National Register of Historic Places designation report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/National Park Service, 1996.

Ross, Thomas Richard. Davis & Elkins College: The Diamond Jubilee History. Elkins, WV: Davis & Elkins College, 1980.

Ross, Thomas Richard. Henry Gassaway Davis: An Old-Fashioned Biography. Parsons, WV: McClain Printing Co., 1994.


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Last update: November 2006