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Eighty-four-year-old Dove Hall maintains beauty, history

Date: 04/30/2020

Built in 1936, Dove Hall is located at the east corner of "The Horseshoe" on campus, near Hadley Hall. Dove Hall is home to New Mexico State University Advancement, which includes the Alumni Association and NMSU Foundation and Development offices.

building in black and white and building in color
Dove Hall in 1947 and Dove hall in 2020. (First photo from NMSU Library Special Collections and Archives; second NMSU photo by Josh Bachman)
Head shot of a man
Dove Hall was named for Claude C. Dove who came to NMSU in 1935 as the first professor of education and psychology. (NMSU photo)
rock fountain with plaque
The fountain just outside Dove Hall was a gift from the NMSU class of 1937. (NMSU photo)

Originally purposed as the universityís Home Economics Building, Dove Hall cost $43,636 to build with nearly 45 percent of the funds coming from the Works Progress Administration and the rest from loans. Construction was completed in October of 1936. It had large classrooms and laboratories for training home economic students on the second floor and university administrative offices on the first floor. The fountain just outside Dove Hall was a gift from the class of 1937.

By 1960, the laboratories for Experiment Station research in food and nutrition and in textiles and clothing were located on the first floor. On the second floor were laboratories for instruction in child development, home furnishings and related art.

Architectural history

Dove Hall was part of the master plan developed by architect Henry C. Trost to build thirteen buildings surrounding "The Horseshoe," but only six ultimately were built before his death. Trost was also a mentor to El Paso architect Percy McGhee, who later became the second university architect on the project. McGhee completed two more buildings on the NMSU campus from Trostís master plan. He continued the Trost tradition of the Spanish Renaissance Revival style, constructed of brick and stucco with red roofing tile.

About Claude C. Dove

Dove Hall was named for Claude C. Dove who came to NMSU in 1935 as the first professor of education and psychology. Dove was born in Athens, W.Va. His dream was to become a teacher. After receiving his doctorate from the University of Colorado, Dove was hired at New Mexico State College in 1935 as the first professor of education and psychology. During his career as an educator, Dove was an advocate for equal and quality education for all. He was a strong advocate to establish free public kindergarten. Dove also served in both World Wars.

Dove became a founder of NMSUís College of Education in 1956. He taught at the university until 1963 and remained a professor emeritus until his death in 1979. Dove was an influential figure in the academic community. In addition to being honored through the naming of Dove Hall, a street in Las Cruces also carries his name.

Renovations over the years

Since the building's construction, it has undergone several renovations. One of the biggest and most costly was in 1987 when it was restored to become home to University Advancement. The renovation cost $800,000. In 2002, a fire broke out in the basement of the building. The flames were quickly contained to the lower level, but heavy smoke carried throughout the building. Fortunately, there was no damage to the main lobby of the alumni living room and memorabilia, but the repairs cost $440,000.









NMSU History Archives