University of Richmond
This walking tour of the University of Richmond features the work of students instructed by former University President Edward Ayers.
Following the decision to move Richmond College from the downtown area to its present location, Ralph Adams Cram, architect for Princeton and other campuses, came to Virginia to design the University of Richmond’s new campus. Designed in 1912 and opened as one fo the first buildings on the new campus, Ryland Hall features the collegiate gothic style which has become a signature of the University. This style of architecture is demonstrated by Ryland Hall's towers, buttresses, arched doorways, dark oak paneling, and vaulted ceilings.
The E. Claiborne Robins School of Business is often one of the first buildings seen upon entering campus at the University of Richmond. The building, constructed of red brick and limestone, has been transformed over the years from a simple structure into a technologically advanced hub where students learn, study, and collaborate.
Throughout the past century, Sarah Brunet Memorial Hall has been used for more purposes than one. It has been renovated and refitted to house several different departments - all of which were only there temporarily - yet has not been assigned a definitive department of its own. Renovations to the orphan building ceased in the mid-1980’s and since then, Sarah Brunet has assumed an unpredictable identity.
Since its construction in 1914, Jeter Hall has survived fires, a bombing, multiple renovations, and over a century of university life. It was one of the original buildings on the University of Richmond’s current campus and was constructed as one of two male residence halls. The building was originally called Dormitory One but became Jeter Hall in 1916. Its namesake, Jeremiah Bell Jeter, was one of the university’s founders and served as a trustee at Richmond College, the university’s college for men. With five sections divided between four floors and a basement, Jeter originally was able to house about 130 students.
The Jenkins Greek Theatre is located on the Westhampton side of the University of Richmond campus next to the Westhampton College Tennis Courts and North Court. The Greek Theatre itself was built in 1929 thanks to donations from Luther H. Jenkins, a Richmond book manufacturer and trustee of the University. The Jenkins Greek Theatre is built in the Classical Greek style with Doric columnns flanking both sides of the stage. The Theatre itself is completely outdoors and capable of seating between 1,500 and 1,700 spectators depending on whether or not the aisles are left open.
Completed in the summer of 1913 by architect Ralph Adams Cram, North Court stands as a symbol of progress for women’s higher education. Formerly called Westhampton, North Court housed everything for the first women enrolled in the women’s college affiliated with Richmond College. The building marked the beginning of the Collegiate Gothic style of architecture, but instead of the traditional limestone, local red clay bricks formed the facades of the building.
Keller Hall was originally built as the Gymnasium and Social Center Building at Westhampton College in 1936. The building served as the recreational and exercise space of the students of Westhampton college for over 40 years until the university started converting the upper levels into students housing. The building was rededicated for Dean May Lansfield Keller in 1963 at the time of her retirement from the university. She had served as the Dean of Westhampton College since its founding in 1914. Today, Keller Hall makes up a small portion of the University of Richmond’s upperclassmen student housing as well as UR’s performing and visual arts facilities.
The George M. Modlin Center for the Arts is a Collegiate Gothic style building that rests on the southern corner of campus at the University of Richmond. It houses Booker Hall, the Visual Arts Building, the Alice Jepson Theater, and other facilities for the arts.
The Gottwald Sscience Ccenter is one of the most prominent buildings on the Westhampton College side of campus because of its size and style. The building’s unusualodd shape and unusual form of the combined with the fact that it only vaguely follows the gothic architecture trendthat defines of the rest of the campus makes the buildingit a stand out. Despite the building’s oddities, it is a perfect breeding ground for innovative collaboration between different science fields in both lab and classroom spaces.
Since 1925, the Westhampton Deanery, now also known as the Westhampton Center, has been a symbol of Westhampton College. The Deanery itself has embodied the identity of the women’s college and the traditions that come with it. As the University of Richmond turned to a coordinate-college system, this single building became the center for the women at the University.
Harry Mansfield Cannon Memorial Chapel was completed in the fall of 1929 – fifteen years after the University of Richmond’s campus was moved to its current location. The chapel is situated on a slight incline, overlooking the lake that separates the Westhampton and Richmond sides of campus. It was dedicated almost a century after the Virginia Legislature granted a charter for a Baptist Seminary in 1840. In 2013, the chapel was added to the Virginia Landmarks Register of Historic Places. Although its presence on campus is less central than in the twentieth century, the lovely structure represents a new inclusivity of faith on campus.