Brick from the McIver Memorial Building

In May 1908, the McIver Memorial Building – named for the recently deceased founding president of the school – opened for use. It quickly became the hub of instructional activity on campus and served as the primary home for chemistry and many of the other science departments and their laboratories. The McIver Statue (which currently sits in front of Jackson Library) was added to the front of the building in 1912. Two wings were later added – an east wing in 1920 and a west wing in 1922.

But the building itself proved unsound rather quickly. By 1913, there were reports of faulty plastering in the building. As early as 1928, the central core of the building, then only 20 years old, was declared by the Science Department head J.P. Givler to be both obsolete and a fire hazard. He referred to the electric wiring as “a patchwork of peril.” A small fire in 1932 was caught early and caused little damage to the building itself. The biggest blow to the McIver Memorial Building, however, came in February 1956 with a partial collapse of a plaster ceiling in Room 215, one of the heavily used classrooms. Campus administrators were forced to close the building in July 1956 and reassign all classes to other buildings around campus. In December 1957, a contract for demolition of the structure was awarded to W.W. Rike, Jr., of Winston-Salem, with a completion time limit of 120 days.

The McIver Memorial Building was replaced by the McIver Building, which opened in 1960. That second McIver Building was demolished in 2018 to make way for the current Nursing and Instructional Building.

Supplemental Materials

McIver Memorial Building

Demolition of the McIver Memorial Building

Spartan Story about the rise and fall of the McIver Memorial Building

Spartan Story about the demise of the McIver Memorial Building

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