It was the year 1891, and The Stout Institute had opened it’s doors as a manual training school. In just 25 years, the campus and curriculum had grown so exponentially that they built Harvey Hall. At the time, students and staff referred to this building as the Home Economics building. 2016 marks the 125th anniversary of the University of Wisconsin Stout, and 100 years with our beloved Harvey Hall.
On Thursday, September 22, students, faculty, alumni and community members alike gathered in the newly remodeled building for a night of history, ribbon-cutting, art, and cookies. Even the cookies themselves were historic—their recipes were crafted right here at UW–Stout in 1958. The event was not only to showcase the building’s recent remodeling, but to celebrate the 100th year.
The construction began in July of 2014 due to an asbestos issue, but now the building has gone through millions of dollars of renovations and is back open for students. Though the renovations were set to improve Harvey Hall, they also used it as an opportunity to restore some of its historical relevance here at Stout.
The windows in the building were changed, but they maintained their original shape and size as Harvey’s original structure back in 1916. The construction crew also dug through years of paint and plaster to find the original mustard color that decorates the walls in the building, and used that as an inspiration for the new interior.
University of Wisconsin Stout’s Archivist, Heather Stecklein, hosted a table full of original artifacts from Stout’s history.
“Everybody has their own contribution to Stout’s history, and it’s really fun and interesting to interpret,” she stated.
Harvey Hall’s reopening has not only allowed for more classroom availability, but also for an opportunity to learn more about the history of the university.