1915 Manual Arts Building
Backstory and Context
The building you see
today, barely resembles the original. The interior has been completed gutted
and remodeled, while the exterior has additional wings, as well as other
You might expect
manual arts to include woodworking, but it also included needlework, basketry,
sewing, and drawing.
Prior to 1915, the
Manual Training department had been located in the northeast wing of the 1896
Normal School building. With construction of the new Normal, the Trustees
decided that a separate facility was needed. This was both for expansion of the
Manual Training department and for safety concerns. The fire that had destroyed
the old school had started in the Manual Training department. From 1912 to
1915, the department had operated in the basement of the 1908 Training School
When the building
opened in 1915, it took the new name, Manual Arts. In 1933, the name changed to
Industrial Arts along with a change in the curriculum. With the completion of
Cheney Hall for Industrial Arts in 1969, the Maintenance Shop moved in. The new
Surbeck Services facility for the maintenance shop opened in 1981, and planning
began to turn the old Manual Arts building into a computer center.
Construction of the
new Computer Center got underway February 1984. An old addition to the Manual
Arts building was demolished, and the interior was gutted. New wings were then
added on the east and north of the original building.
The building was
renamed for former English professor and benefactor, Frances B. Huston in 2006.
It is currently used, in 2016, provides office space for Information Technology