ST. CLOUD -- St. Cloud State University is celebrating its 150th birthday this year. Once a month SCSU Archivist Tom Stemen comes on the News @ Noon Show to talk about the school's rich history.

While none of the original buildings remain on campus, there are several that date back to the early 1900s. Local Historian Bill Morgan says the oldest current building is Lawrence Hall.

It was originally built in the 1880s and then it had a terrible fire in 1905.  The women were lucky enough to get out in time.  It was rebuilt the following year.

Today Lawrence Hall is used as a dormitory and the Center for International Studies. Morgan says Riverview opened in 1915.

Famous for the ghost stories, my students always liked the ghost stories more than the architecture.  That has been restored and is on the National Register.

Morgan says all of the most historic buildings are along the Mississippi River, including Shoemaker Hall which also opened in 1915 and Eastman Hall which opened in 1930.

Morgan says the four buildings all have at least one thing in common they were all designed by a man by the name of Clarence Johnston.

Who was the state architect from 1901 to 1931, he designed literally hundreds of buildings across the state any state-sponsored buildings was designed by Clarence Johnston and his team.  Eastman is one of his best I think.

Eastman Hall (1930), exterior, St. Cloud State University
Eastman Hall (1930), exterior, St. Cloud State University

Eastman Hall's five large windows to the west were covered in the spring of 1963 to eliminate sun glare. Those windows are now open again as part of the $18.5 million renovations that is currently underway.

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