Named in honor of the eighteenth president of Mars Hill College, Blackwell Hall houses the university's administration including President Dr. Dan Lunsford's office. Blackwell Hall was built on the site of the former Spilman Home for Girls and Treat Annex.
Backstory and Context
A particular unique feature of Blackwell Hall is a three-story ceramic mural that depicts traditional Appalachian household and farming implements. Designed and created by Mars Hill College alumni Douglas Ferguson, visitors may see the mural if they enter from the main entrance on first floor. Mr. Ferguson, Mars Hill College class of 1933, went on to open Pigeon Forge pottery with his father-in-law after serving in the U.S. Army at Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Ferguson would go on to become a celebrated ceramist, which is well deserved if one studies his Tree of Heritage. This piece includes pioneer artifacts from Ferguson’s mountain home inside the first floor foyer of Blackwell Hall and farm implements on the outside portion of the piece. The 1856 college building stands between the two sections of the piece.
Also inside the Blackwell Hall foyer is a model of the Mars Hill College circa 1910. Created by Douglas Mackenzie of Marshall, this model was a gift from the Class of 1956 in celebration of their 50th reunion and the school's sesquicentennial. We invite you to notice some of the sites in the model that are still on campus, including Founders Hall and the Moore Pin Oak.
Hood, Davyd Foard. Mars Hill College Historic District Nomination for National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service, 2006.
Mars Hill College: Emphasis Records Catalog, 1985-86. North Carolina: Mars Hill College, 1985.