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Western Michigan University
Building Timeline ~ 1944-1953

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Western acquires 155 acres of land to the west of the Michigan Central Railroad tracks
Mrs. Anna Carstens Kanley contributed to the purchase of property in memory of her son, William Kanley, a Western student.
Presidential Residence (The Oaklands) acquired
Presidential Residence - "The Oaklands"
The Oaklands and its grounds were, at various times, a farm, a horse farm, and a golf course before being acquired by Western.

Arcadia Brook Clubhouse acquired (club house for former golf course)

The building would be razed in 1990 during planning of the Student Recreation Center.

ROTC Buildings and Arcadia Cafeteria
Western's academic departments are organized into three Divisions:
General Education
Teacher Education
Vocational Education
Four wooden buildings constructed from WWII surplus supplies, near Waldo Stadium: English Hall, Business Education Building, Farm Shop, and Music Building.
Maintenance Building added to north end of Industrial Education Building (formerly Manual Arts Building).
Maintenance Building Construction, 1947
Map detail
Click picture to view complete campus map.
A temporary "Annex" was converted for program use, located next to the Industrial Education Building.
Annex to Industrial Education Building (originally Manual Arts Building)
Training School Annex (connector between buildings)
"Bridge of Sighs"
Circa 1910,
"Bridge of Sighs"
Aerial Photo 1915
1915 aerial photograph
Aerial photo 1998
1998 aerial photo
Arcadia Brook remodeled as Arcadia Cafeteria and Clubhouse

Hillside Apartments

The Hillside buildings would be razed in 1990 during planning of the Student Recreation Center.

Construction of Hillside Apartment building
Initially constructed as faculty apartments, the Hillside buildings would later house faculty offices.

Smith Burnham and Ernest Burnham Halls for Men
Burnhams Residence Halls, construction

Dr. Ernest Burnham served in the Department of Rural Education from 1904 to 1940. Dr. Smith Burnham was chair of the History Department from 1919 to 1939.
Wooden buildings constructed from WWII surplus supplies, on Michigan Ave.: Speech and Dramatics Building, Physical Education Annex
"Barracks" demolished.
William McCracken Hall
1946 rendering of McCracken Hall
1946 architectural rendering
Click to enlarge.
Dr. William McCracken was head of the Chemistry Department from 1907 until his retirement in 1939. He also served as Acting President during the 1922-23 school year.

Harper Maybee Music Hall

Maybee Hall would be demolished in 1988 during plannning for the University Computer Center.

Architects rendering of Maybee Hall, 1948
1948 architectural rendering
Click to enlarge. (59K)
Harper C. Maybee served as Director of Music from 1913 to 1946.
Blanche Draper and Lydia Siedschlag Halls
Siedshlag Hall entrance
Lydia Siedschlag was a long-time Art faculty (hired in 1921) and Western interior decorator from 1936 to 1958. Blanche Draper was Western's publicity director from 1919 to 1951.
Kanley Memorial Chapel
Kanley Clock Tower
Construction was made possible by a bequest from the estate of William Kanley, a former student.
Construction Photo of South Entrance of Administration Building
"Rising from the ruins of a once beautiful golf course, the design of Western Michigan's new administration building makes admirable use of the rolling topography, presenting entrances on three different levels."
- Russell A. Strong, Publicity Director