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The Process: Transforming Old Main

Original building — 1854
Architect: Edward C. Jones

Wofford’s first students took their admission exams in Latin. During their first years, they studied the works of Caesar, Cicero and Zenophon before progressing to chemistry, moral and natural philosophy, geology and political economy. The goal was to instill moral values and a familiarity with the intellectual world of the mid 19th century. Students were expected to attend daily chapel services.

Old Main 1854 

First major renovation — 1902

By the renovation of 1902, Wofford professors were replacing oral examinations with written. The college added a Bachelor of Science degree and began substituting modern languages for classical languages.
In addition to emphasizing English language and literature, the college began requiring science courses.

Old Main 1902

Second major renovation — 1961

By the late 1950s, Old Main needed a major stabilization and revitalization. While the exterior work was faithful to the classical design of Edward C. Jones, the classrooms were radically altered. The auditorium was expanded to hold a larger student body, and a new north-side portico was added. Although the college experienced a more “cold-war” culture, it still focused on the liberal arts and the development of character. The 1960s saw professors place more emphasis on writing and cultural programs as well as mathematics, science and history.

Old  Main 1961


Third major renovation — 2006

The most recent renovation has taken about eight years and has been done in several phases. More of a transformation, Old Main now has cutting edge technology and handicap accessibility as well both beauty and functionality. As has been the case since the construction of the building in 1854, every Wofford student still spends hours within Old Main’s walls in classes, convocations, study sessions with friends and discussions with faculty mentors.

Leonard Auditorium