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Eastern Michigan University
Ypsilanti, MI, USA 48197
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Chronological Tour
Historic Tour > Chronological Tour > Welch Hall

Welch Hall

Date of Construction: 1896
Known Uses: Welch Hall served as a training school for more than 25 years. The first classes were moved into the building on March 29, 1897, just three days after the nearby Starkweather Hall was dedicated. The English, Home Economics and the Special Education departments were housed in the building until 1939. Shortly before 1950, business education, geography, history and social science departments were moved into the Welch. Military Science was assigned in 1952. During 1960s, classrooms were gradually converted into offices.

Welch Hall - Original Picture

Welch Hall was originally a small and a simple structure.

Welch Hall - west wing added

A west wing (seen above) added in 1909 was demolished in 1974 to provide space for McKenny Union expansion. This second oldest building on campus was almost converted into a shopping mall in the 1980s. Continuing deterioration and lack of money for renovation forced the building to be vacated in January 1983. The state deemed Welch a "building no longer worth repairing" and refused to provide any money for restoration.

Welch Hall - refurbished

Architects and planners in 1985 that Welch Hall be refurbished to provide space for a bookstore, music shop, copy services and other commercial ventures. Upper floors would be renovated into apartments for faculty. But these plans never materialized.

Welch Hall - present

A $2.5 million federal appropriation saved Welch from the wrecking ball. The total cost for 1939 restoration was $3.5 million.