Throwback Thursday: Curtiss Hall

Curtiss Hall pictured shortly after completion from the northwest. 

Curtiss Hall pictured shortly after completion from the northwest. 

Ian Steenhoek

Curtiss Hall

Pictured from the northwest in 1909 shortly after the building was finished, and again in late November 2017.

Construction for Curtiss Hall took place from 1906-1909. It was originally named Agricultural Hall.

Plans for the building initially had it placed 100 feet to the west, but was moved due to concerns of having a building on central campus. Construction on the building ceased in 1907 because the original contractor went bankrupt. A bonding company picked up construction of the building soon after and finished it in 1909.

The building was not occupied until 1912 because accounts with a surety company were not balanced.

In 1947 the building was renamed after Dean Charles F. Curtiss. 

Curtiss was born in 1863 in Nora, Illinois. He grew up 10 miles north of Iowa State College. He graduated from Iowa State College in 1887.

In 1891 he would join faculty, and would earn his M.S. in 1894.

Curtiss would help develop the first four-year curriculum which would be integrated at Iowa State in 1892. In 1896 he would become a professor for animal husbandry and later became the head in 1897.

In 1902 he became the dean of the College of Agriculture. 

In his time at Iowa State, he helped increase the size of animal teaching herds and worked in an experiment to develop an American draft horse breed.

Curtiss was a candidate for the Iowa State presidency two times during his time at Iowa State.

In 1896, Curtiss and his family moved into the Farmhouse, which is the oldest building currently on Iowa State’s meeting. He lived there until his death in 1946.