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OSU Buildings Histories

Building History

Democrat Herald


This spot previously housed the first dormitory on campus called Alpha Hall, and then went on to be used by the pharmacy college. Alpha Hall was later split into two sections, one moved to 23rd and Orchard Street, and the other moved just north of what is now Bexell Hall, and then dismantled in 1922. The location was filled by the Dairy Building in 1912, which was designed by architect John Bennes. This building has been used by the College of Liberal Arts and known as Social Science Hall since 1951. It was renamed Gilkey Hall in 2001 for Gordon Gilkey, chair of the Art Department, and first dean of the College of Liberal Arts. Gilkey is also known worldwide for his printmaking and art collection, and for his efforts to save works of art during World War II. He helped establish the Oregon Arts Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

General Information

Address 122 SW Waldo Pl
Architect Bennes
Year Built 1912
Renovations 1951
Square Footage 22,263
Purpose/Usage Previously: Dairy Building. Currently: College of Liberal Arts, classrooms and office space

Previous Name(s) Dairy Building (1912-1951), Social Science Hall (1951-2001)
Namesake Gordon Gilkey, chair of the Art Department, and first dean of the College of Liberal Arts

Historic District Yes; Historic Contributing Building 
Blueprints Unknown

Facilities Services Records, 1888-2003. Series XX:  Campus, Farm, and Property Maps, 1899-1990. Campus and Farm Maps: 3-A

Oregon State University Campus Maps, 1894-1994


Oregon State University Historical Photographs, 1868-1980

Further Archival Information

SCARC: The Special Collections and Archives Research Center contains four photograph collections, as well as the Memorabilia Collection, box 27.2, which contains newspaper clippings about Gilkey Hall.


Oregon Digital: Contains many historic photographs of Gilkey Hall, both inside and out, as well as periodicals pertaining to the building itself.