Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project

 

 
Vorhees Hall

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Institution Name: Hope College
Original/Historic Place Name: Elizabeth R. Voorhees Girls Residence
Location on Campus: 72 E. Tenth St.
Date(s) of Construction:
1907original construction Mast, Samuel O.
Designer: Samuel O. Mast
Type of Place: Individual building
Style: Other (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, culture, history
Narrative: see below
References: see below
Materials:
Foundation: stone with cement facing
Walls: wood frame with brick fascia
Roof: asphalt shingles
 
Function:
ca. 1907dining hall
ca. 1907academic department building
1907-present (2006)residence hall
 

Narrative:
Named for its donors, Ralph and Elizabeth Rodman Voorhees, this hall was built in 1907 from drawings by Samuel O. Mast, a faculty member. It was the first building on campus to house women.

Voorhees Hall is architecturally significant because it is in a Dutch Renaissance revival style of central importance to Hope College's tradition. It is quite responsive to light, comfortably located on a broad yard, and linked spatially and stylistically to Van Wylen Library, which faces Vorhees on the other side of College Avenue. The two buildings face the street and are an introduction to the college campus when approaching from the north (downtown). Voorhees's style stepped gables, coins, voussoirs is set in vernacular materials locally produced: Waverly sandstone and Veneklasen brick. The hall's cultural life as a dorm and, at one time, an eating hall, enriches the college's commitment to educational living.
 

References:

Bruins, Elton J., and Larry J. Wagenaar. Campus Alive: A Walking Tour of Hope College. Holland, MI: Hope College, 1999.

Stegenga, Preston J. Anchor of Hope: The History of an American Denominational Institution, Hope College. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans, 1954.

Wichers, Wynand. A Century of Hope: 1866-1966. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans, 1966.

 

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Last update: November 2006