BGSU Historic Campus Tour

Hanna Hall

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In many ways, the Board of Trustees intended for Hanna Hall to be the focus of the University's education efforts when it approved plans for the construction of the building in 1916. The founders originally intended for the building to serve as an actual elementary school where students could train and hone their skills while working in an actual classroom. Over the years, Hanna Hall would adopt a variety of other roles at the University, including audio-visual center and film-theater, all of which were similarly as important to the University's mission.

Hanna Hall

Listed below are additional highlights in the history of the building:

  • 1915, plans approved for construction of a "Training School" on the campus of BGSU and the Ohio State Legislature appropriates $100,000 for this purpose.
  • 1921, construction on the "Training School" finally completed. While construction began in 1916, it was not completed until 1921, due to material shortages in the aftermath of World War I and bankruptcy of the contractor. First called Elementary School building, it was used as a training school for future teachers. Bowling Green elementary school students came to the campus facility for classes.
  • 1959, major renovation undertaken to convert the building from a school to a building that would house the English Department, the KEY offices, a counseling and reading center, faculty offices, curriculum laboratory, an audio-visual center, and an air-conditioned lecture hall, that had previously been a gymnasium.
  • 1959, officially dedicated to Myrna Reece Hanna, state representative from Bowling Green, who in 1929 sponsored the Emmons Bill transforming Kent and Bowling Green from Normal Schools to State Universities with separate colleges and graduate programs.
  • 1975, another major renovation undertaken to improve the acoustics and audio-visual capabilities of the building, as well as the creation of an audio-visual storage room and projection booth, new chalkboards, projection screens, microphone system. Additionally, the contractors fixed the heating problems and painted the inside of the building.
  • 1976, completion of renovation delayed and finally executed upon the prolonged shipment of hardware to the area for the installation of new entrance and stairways doors.
  • 1996, room 102 officially dedicated as The Lillian Gish Film Theater with the accompanying memorabilia pertinent to the actress donated to the University at the same time.
  • 2003-2004, project to upgrade finishes and lighting in corridors and classrooms, update some electrical, repair breezeway windows and doors, and address fire and safety issues.
  • 2005, classroom renovations.
  • 2006, carpet replacement
  • 2010, Ralph Wolfe Viewing Center opens