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Locklin Hall (RG 129)

This photograph is a view of Springfield College's Locklin Hall from across Alden Street.

Locklin Hall

For Springfield College, the history of Locklin Hall begins in 1966 when Howard J. Cadwell, Western Mass Electric Chairman, and Wilbert E. Locklin, president of Springfield College, announced that Springfield College had acquired 5.3 acres of property from the Western Massachusetts Electric Company. The land contained 5 buildings at the time of the purchase, including what is now the Towne Student Health Center. The largest building obtained was located on the northwest corner of Alden Street and Wilbraham Avenue, or 210 Alden Street. At this point, the exact date that the building was built is unknown, though it was there before the construction of Weiser began in 1921. An investment of $192,000 allowed the building to be made into an efficient academic resource, with the first floor becoming a site for classrooms, faculty offices, and lecture halls. Until 1985, Locklin was often called the Academic Building, the Maroon Building, and sometimes just 210 Alden Street. Though not known for sure, according to documents in this collection Locklin may have housed, for a short time, the Physiological Research Laboratory. In 1968, a request was made to name the Physiological Research Laboratory the “Peter V. Karpovich Biokinetics Laboratory,” once it was moved to the Maroon Building. In 1969, the request of naming was approved by the Public Affairs Commission and was forwarded to the College Council for action. Further research needs to be conducted to determine if the laboratory ever resided in Locklin.  

The building was never fully renovated when acquired from Western Mass Electric, and initial renovations continued on through the summer of 1970. Further renovations occurred in 1984. Through a combination of P.P.D’s budget and a $10,000 grant from ARCO, renovations were made to the business department on the second floor of the Maroon Building. Six new classrooms were added, along with an office for each professor and a secretarial room for student aids to work in. The rehabilitated building also included six new offices, a seminar room, secretarial space and a small taping room. 

It was shortly after these renovations, during the summer of 1985, that the building was finally renamed from the Maroon Building to Locklin Hall in honor of Wilbert E. Locklin, the ninth president of Springfield College, who was retiring after 20 years of leading the college. 

During the summer of 2013, Locklin Hall was renovated yet again, though as in the past, only portions of the building were addressed. The renovations included the moving and widening of the stairwells, the addition of a Starbucks coffee shop, and the restoration of the classrooms and offices, in particular the office and classroom spaces of the Business and Management departments on the second floor.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

At this time there is not a lot of information contained in the Locklin Hall Records collection. There is some information about the building as well as some meeting notes from Public Affairs Commission about the naming of the Physiological Research Laboratory to be placed in Locklin and that the new laboratory should be named the Peter V. Karpovich Biokinetics Laboratory (Note: it is not known whether these proposals were ever acted upon as it does not say in these documents). There are undated copies of original floor plans or blueprints and photographs of the exterior of the building believed to be taken from the late 1970’s or early 1980’s through about 2001.