CSU Archives and Special Collections

CSU Buildings and Grounds History

A history of CSU's building and grounds from 1870 to the present.

Civil and Irrigation Engineering Building, 1910-

The white Civil and Irrigation Engineering Building in an open field with an automobile in front of the building. It is a four-story building with a monitor structure above the pitched roof.Civil and Irrigation Engineering Building, 1910

From CSU's Sense of Place:  A Campus History of Colorado's Land-Grant University, by James E. Hansen, Gordon A. Hazard, and Linda M. Meyer.  Fort Collins, CO:  Colorado State University, 2018.

Architects – Harlan Thomas and Louis George Carpenter (1903), Larry Trampe of Architectural Resource Group P. C. of Fort Collins (2006)

Builders – Charles A. Button (1903), Loupe & Boyd (1908), R. H. Bradley and W. F. Towers (1909), Richard Lippoth of Pinnacle Quarry and Sun Construction & Design Services (2006)

851 Oval Drive

In August 1903, the contract to build a new $60,000 Civil and Irrigation Engineering Building was awarded to Charles A. Button.  Civil and Irrigation Engineering Professor Louis George Carpenter worked with architect Harlan Thomas to design the “Mission-style” building.  Barton O. Aylesworth was the President of the College when the project broke ground.  It was described as being located “north of the Old Reservoir”.  These features are seen on the campus map of 1904 drawn by Ralph Parshall.   However, due to funding problems, the construction stopped.  It would eventually take seven years to finally complete and open for classes.

In 1908 Loupe & Boyd were hired to take over the construction.  This lasted for a short time until funds dried up again.  It wasn’t until Charles A. Lory became president of the College in the summer of 1909 that adequate funds were finally secured. Contractors R. H. Bradley and W. F. Towers were hired, and the construction of the long needed building finished.  The new building’s equipment was installed in time for the start of the 1910 fall term. 

Opening in September 1910, this landmark campus building became a showcase building and was touted as being the best facility available for irrigation work anywhere in the country on any campus.  The Irrigation Engineering Laboratory, Cement Laboratory and photography darkrooms occupied the basement of the building when it opened.  Department and Experiment Station offices, museum and instrument room occupied the first floor.  Faculty offices, classrooms and a library occupied the second floor.  A large well-lighted drafting room, blueprint apparatus, tables and filing cases occupied the third floor.   Within three years, a new Hydraulics Laboratory opened west of this building and the irrigation experimentation work was moved there.  During its early years, Dr. George Glover used part of the new building for the offices of the Division of Veterinary Medicine, a Pathology museum and even one classroom.

The “Civil Building” as it was commonly known, had been envisioned by Professor Louis George Carpenter, longtime head of the Civil and Irrigation Engineering Department and Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station.  Architect Harlan Thomas designed the building that had “Mediterranean with Mission Elements” architecture.  The Colorado School of Mines campus has a similar appearing Harlan Thomas building that opened in 1904 known as “Stratton Hall”.

For a few weeks in late 1918 and early 1919, the top floor was used as an infirmary for students suffering from the Spanish Flu.  From late-January 1927 until mid-June 1928, the Pathology Section of the Department of Veterinary Medicine used part of the building.  The Veterinarians and their laboratories had been displaced by the fire that destroyed the North and South Barracks on January 28, 1927.  In June 1928, they were able to move across the Oval to the old Library building now called the Veterinary Medicine Building.

After completion of the current “Engineering - Physics Building” in 1957, the old “Civil Building” became known as the “Business and Economics Building”.  This became the home to the CSU Computing Center in 1960. In 1962, the College of Business moved over to Johnson Hall and the name again changed to simply the “Economics Building”.  In June 1984 the State Board of Agriculture placed the 75-year-old building, along with two others, on a list to be razed.  Years of deferred maintenance had taken its toll.  Fortunately, the wrecking ball was not used.

In May 1988, the State Board of Agriculture changed its name to the “Statistics Building” to better reflect its current function as home to the College of Natural Sciences, the Department of Statistics, the Franklin A. Graybill Statistical Laboratory, and the Center for Applied Statistical Expertise (CASE)  In October 1994, the “Statistics Building” became one of 26 campus buildings of the internally created “CSU Historic Preservation District” created by the administration under President Albert C. Yates.  The old building received restoration work using funds from a grant provided by the Colorado State Historical Society during 1995.  In the summer of 2006 the masonry stairs at the entrance to the building were restored by Richard Lippoth of Pinnacle Quarry and Sun Construction & Design Services.  Architect Larry Trampe of Architectural Resource Group led the design work on this project.

 

Sources by Gordon Hazard

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, June 1, 1900, page 635.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, April 30, 1901, page 648.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, June 7, 1901, page 658.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, December 11, 1901, page 667.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, May 31, 1902, page 679.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, December 15, 1902, page 6, vol. XII, number 6.

Coloarado Agricultural College Bulletin, 1903 Handbook, LD1146, A3, series 2, number 3, ARCHIVE.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, May 11, 1903, page 708.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, May 25, 1903, page 27, col. 1, vol. XII, numbers 15 and 16.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, July 24, 1903, pages 717-719, 721.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, October 6, 1903, page 725.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, December 9, 1903, page 729.

“Map of the College Grounds – 1904”, by Ralph L. Parshall.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, February 10, 1905, pages 1-5 and 6, vol. XIV, number 9.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, April 25, 1905, page 789.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, September 1, 1905, page 18.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, December 15, 1906, page 11, vol. XVI, number 6.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, January 1, 1907, page 1, vol. XVI, number 7.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, February 1, 1907, page 6, vol. XVI, number 9.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, December 11, 1907, page 128.

“The State Agricultural College, Fort Collins, Colorado, Catalogue and Prospectus – 1908-09, page 31.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, June 5, 1908, pages 173, 176, 179.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, June 30, 1908, page 74.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, July 1, 1908, page 75, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, July 22, 1908, page 196

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, August 30, 1908, pages 79 and 80, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, October 31, 1908, pages 86-90.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, December 9, 1908, pages 225, 229, vol. 3.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, January 30, 1909, page 10, vol. XVIII, number 8.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, February 27, 1909, pages 12 and 13, vol. XVIII, number 10.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, February 27, 1909, pages 99-100, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, April 30, 1909, pages 104, 105, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, May 8, 1909, page 7, vol. XVIII, number 14.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, May 22, 1909, page 12, vol. XVIII, number 15.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, June 3, 1909, page 283.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, June 12, 1909, page 11, vol. XVIII, number 16.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, July 17, 1909, page 112, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, July 30, 1909, page 114, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, July 31, 1909, pages 121-122, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, August 30, 1909, pages 126-127, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, September 30, 1909, pages 135, 136, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, October 15, 1909, page 140, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, October 29, 1909, page 142, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, December 9, 1909, page 297.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, December 31, 1909, pages 157 and 158.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, January 15, 1910, page 11, vol. XIX, number 16.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, January 22, 1910, pages 4 and 5, vol. XIX, number 17.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, January 28, 1910, page 161, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, January 29, 1910, page 163, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, February 25, 1910, page 164.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, February 26, 1910, pages 168, 171, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, March 5, 1910, page 8, vol. XIX, number 23.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, March 19, 1910, page 7, vol. XIX, number 25.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, March 28, 1910, page 173, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, May 28, 1910, page 7, vol. XIX, number 35.

“Silver Spruce of Class 1911”, page 219, vol. V.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, June 13, 1910, page 185.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, September 21, 1910, page 1, vol. 20, number 1.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, November 16, 1910, page 6, vol. 20, number 9.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, November 23, 1910, page 15, vol. 20, number 10.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, August 31, 1911, page 241.

32nd Annual Register of the Officers and Students of the Colorado Agricultural College, Agriculture and Mechanic Arts, Prospectus for 1911-1912, Fort Collins, Colorado, pages 18 and 20.

1913 Silver Spruce yearbook.

1914 Silver Spruce yearbook.

“Colorado Agricultural College Bulletin – Engineering the Vocation for the Young Man with Ambition”, Series 15, Number 3, April 1915, by Ralph L. Crosman, LD1146.A3, Archives and Special Collections.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, December 8, 1915, page 347.

State Board of Agriculture Executive Committee Minutes, January 25, 1916, pages 363-364, vol. Dec. 1905 - Dec. 1916.

“Silver Spruce – 1917”, page 28, vol. 12.

Rocky Mountain Collegian October 10, 1918, pages 1 and 6, vol. XXVIII, number 3.

Rocky Mountain Collegian October 17, 1918, pages 1 and 8, vol. XXVIII, number 4.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, October 3, 1922, page 1, vol. XXXII, number 6.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, October 17, 1924, page 1, vol. XXXIV, number 13.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, September 14, 1932, page 1, col. 7, vol. XLII, number 2.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, October 5, 1932, page 1, col. 2-3, vol. XLII, number 5.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, January 4, 1933, page 1, vol. XLII, number 16.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, March 9, 1944, page 3, vol. LIII, number 26.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, November 1, 1946, page 2, vol. LVI, number 5.

“Long Range Development Program”, Report to the Colorado State Planning Commission, March 1952, pages 12, 19 and campus maps, LD1145.8, A452, 1952, Archive.

The Colorado Aggie Alumnus, November – December 1955, pages 3 and 4, vol. 32, number 3.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, November 16, 1956, page 7, vol. LXV, number 17.

Summer Session Bulletins – Campus Maps 1958 through 1961.

Colorado State University Collegian, November 30, 1960, page 1, vol. LXIX, number 36.

Colorado State University Collegian, December 7, 1960, page 1, vol. LXIX, number 40.

Colorado State University Collegian, January 17, 1961, page 1, vol. LXIX, number 49.

Colorado State University Collegian, February 11, 1966, page 1, vol. LXXIV, number 85.

“A History of Colorado State University 1870-1974”, by James E. Hansen II, 1974.

Fort Collins Journal, November 1, 1976, page 1, vol. LXXXV.

“Democracy’s College in the Centennial State – A History of Colorado State University” by James E. Hansen II, 1977, pp. 200, 224-225, 275.

Fort Collins Journal, September 28, 1978, pages 1 and 8, vol. LXXXVII, number 32.

Fort Collins Journal, October 5, 1978, page 1, vol. LXXXVII, number 37.

Chiron’s Time: A History of the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Colorado State University”, 1983, by J. Dennis McGuire and James E. Hansen II, pp. 52-53, SF777 .M38 1983 ARCHIVE.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, June 27, 1984.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, May 10, 1988.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, July 10, 1992, page 3, vol. 101, number 3.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, May 2, 1994, page 1, vol. 102, number 157.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, October 11, 1994, 1-8a-z 1-1u-w.

State Board of Agriculture Minutes, May 2, 1995, 1-12a-aa,1-1u-v.

 Rocky Mountain Collegian, January 25, 1996, page 1, vol. 104, issue 86.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, February 2, 1996, page 1, vol. 104, issue 92.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, September 25, 1996, page 5, vol. 105, issue 30.

Comment, October 17, 1996, page 2, vol. 27, number 9.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, October 22, 1996, page 3, vol. 105, issue 49.

Rocky Mountain Collegian, October 22, 1997, page 3, vol. 106, issue 41.

Comment, March 9, 2006, page 1, vol. 36, number 15.

Your Librarian

Profile Photo
Vicky Lopez-Terrill
she/her/hers
Contact:
Vicky Lopez-Terrill
Colorado State University Libraries
Archives and Special Collections
Room 202
970-491-1466
Social: Twitter Page

24/7 Library Help

24/7 Library Help

Connect with library staff via chat, email, phone or text.

URL: https://libguides.colostate.edu/campus_building_histories | Print Page