Franklin College, established in 1834, was the first coeducational institution in Indiana and the seventh in the nation. Franklin College has grown, physically and ideologically, and has made changes to its campus to support the larger amount and increasing variety of people. These changes in physical appearance include the construction of new buildings like new dormitories. Ideologically, Franklin has grown towards an ideology that gives students the opportunity for greater equality and responsibility. Franklin College commissioned surveys and studies that showed the potential for enrollment to grow, and it did. With enrollment up, Franklin College’s campus was becoming too small. Not only was the number of students increased, but these students were different. These students might be from different economic backgrounds, different ages, or different major life choices and all of these things shaped Franklin College’s campus.
This paper will be covering the infrastructure of Franklin College and cover some of the changes to the campus and why the changes happened. Most of the information this paper is based upon came from articles found in Franklin College’s Archives. My archival search began in the grounds and campus files. From there I moved to maps. I received many ideas from Ruth, the archivist, and through the oral history she gave me, I was able to piece together a topic based on the things I thought stood out among Franklin College’s grounds changes. Most evidence is dated, but there are a couple maps without dates. The maps can be easily traced back to when they were published based upon the information gathered from other sources. Another issue that arouse when researching came from issues regarding some accurate dates within the archives. When attempting to find more solid proof, I tried to contact City Hall and the Physical Plant, but was not successful. In City Hall, there was a previously a flood and a large portion of files were damaged, including the ones I was looking for. I made do with what I had gathered and wrote about my findings.
Before 1945, Franklin College’s campus was relatively small to the size of Franklin College’s campus in 2013. In 1945, there was Chandler Hall, Bryan Hall Women’s Dormitory, Bailey Hall, Stott Hall, Shirk Hall, a Gymnasium, the Well House, and Barnes Science Hall. (SEE FIGURE 1 FOR EARLY MAP) But starting in 1946 and onward until 1992, Franklin started changing its campus for the larger population and variety of people that would come through. These changes included the adaption of military barracks, the closing of three streets that ran through campus, the enlargement and changes in dormitories, the Eli Lily Student Center, and Poor Richard’s Store.
In 1946, as the veterans of World War II started returning home, Franklin College had a new population of students that began enrolling. The Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, or the G.I. Bill, was a piece of legislation meant to...