Spaces and Faces

“Spaces and Faces: Namesakes at the University of Arkansas” highlights the people and places of the University of Arkansas by showing the names behind the buildings.

Namesakes at the University of Arkansas


This digital image collection documents the buildings on the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville campus and the people who inspired the building names. It features historical photographs and background information related to influential leaders of our campus and community along-side their namesake buildings. Images and information for this collection are drawn from the holdings of the Special Collections department of the University of Arkansas Libraries. A few of the images are repeated from the Shared History digital collection. Spaces and Faces is an ongoing digital collection which will continue to grow under the direction of the University Archivist.

Historical Note

The University of Arkansas was established in 1871 as a land grant institution under the Morrill Act. Classes began in January of 1872 in a wooden building, which no longer exists. Students began using the first permanent building, Old Main, in 1875. Though construction on this campus has remained fairly constant, it can be divided into different phases as the master building plans changed and evolved. In the very beginning, there was no master plan. Only one of these early buildings, Old Main, remains. Besides Old Main, the other buildings constructed during the 19th century, such as the first Buchanan Hall, have been torn down. In 1905, the first building boom occurred when the University received $90,500 in appropriations for the addition of six buildings. Carnall Hall was one of the buildings among this group. A new phase started in 1925 when the first master building plan was created. Architectural firm Jamieson and Spearl developed this master building plan in which buildings would be built in the collegiate gothic style. Vol Walker Hall is one example completed under this plan. In 1946, architecture professor John G. Williams began teaching architecture at the University of Arkansas. Williams was involved in campus planning through different roles, and he was asked to choose a new campus planner in the 1950s, selecting James Ward. Buildings abandoned the collegiate gothic style and began to be constructed in a more modern style. Buildings constructed during this phase include Brough Commons, Futrall Hall and Hotz Hall. Additional campus plans were created in later decades by Hamilton-Butt Associates and Arnold Butt. The current plan was created by Sasaki Associates in 1998.

Most buildings were named after an influential and long-time member of the campus, such as Jobelle Holcombe, who was involved with the campus as student and professor for more than half a century and was the first woman at the U of A to receive an honorary LL.D. degree. Other buildings were named after individuals who made a quick but profound impact, such as Silas H. Hunt, the first African American to be admitted to the U of A in the modern age. Also, the naming of a building might coincided with the death of an individual. U of A President John C. Futrall was killed in a car accident while Memorial Hall was being built, inspiring the name John C. Futrall Memorial Hall. Whatever the impact on the campus community, the names of these individuals are forever integrated into the culture of the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.

Project Information

Images were scanned using an Epson Expression Scanner, Model 1640XL, with a 12" X 17" scanning bed, using Epson Twain Pro version 1.75A software and Adobe Photoshop. Photographic prints were scanned at 600 dpi, and negatives were scanned at 1200 dpi. All images were initially saved as TIFF files before being imported as JPEGs into OCLC’s CONTENTdm digital content management system. Images reused from the Shared History digital collection were previously scanned as JPEGs at 72 dpi. Metadata and CONTENTdm indexing fields were selected from Dublin Core and MARC elements.

Amy Allen and Anne Gresham coordinated the first phase of this collection. The project continues to grow under the coordination of Amy Allen. Others involved included Alexsis Bell, George Fowler, Beth Juhl, Deb Kulczak, Arthur Morgan, Tim Nutt, and Janet Parsch.

For assistance with using the collection or for any questions or comments, please contact the Special Collections Department at or (479) 575-5577.

Additional Resources

Hale, Harrison. University of Arkansas 1871-1948. Fayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas, 1948.

Leflar, Robert A. The First 100 Years: Centennial History of the University of Arkansas. Fayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas Foundation, 1971.

Reynolds, John Hugh and David Yancey Thomas. History of the University of Arkansas. Fayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas Press, 1910.

Simpson, Ethel C. Image and Reflection: A Pictorial History of the University of Arkansas. Fayetteville, AR: University of Arkansas Press, 1990.