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Feldman, Jim / The buildings of the University of Wisconsin

Nurses dormitory,   pp. 189-190

Page 189

Fig. 1. The nurses
dorm with home-
...coming decorations
...c. 1930. Note the
hipped roof center
section with flat
roofed wings.
[series 9/4, Nurses
Dormitory, x25-
Built in 1926 as the home of the University nursing program, this building was a
dormitory for 96 nursing students until 1960 when it became nursing offices only. In
1978 it was taken over by the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC). It was added
to the National Register of Historic Places in 1987.
After the lull in campus expansion during the first world war, after the battles over whether
/     there should be a four-year medical program at the university had been fought and won the
.      legislature appropriated $1.3 million for a hospital and nurses dormitory. The hospital was
built in 1923, but due to delays in funding, and some further disagreement about the medical school
the final planning and construction of the nurses dorm was not begun until 1924.
The department of nursing at the university was founded in 1920, after the landmark
Goldmark report on the study of nursing at public institutions. An earlier attempt in 1918 had failed
due to inadequate facilities. The legislative appropriation for the hospital specifically included money
for better facilities for nurses. The main nurse's home, beginning in 1919 was in a large house at 450
N. Charter Street (later demolished). The nursing department was still embryonic and considerably
fragmented, but under the drive and energy of Helen Denne and her second in command Lila B.
Fletcher this situation rapidly changed. 1
In June of 1923 the team of Bardeen, Birge and state architect Peabody selected property on
University Avenue occupied by homes between Lorch and Warren [later Randall] Streets, as the
exact location for the nurses dorm. The land was purchased and plans were undertaken by Peabody
and his staff. These plans were approved by the governor in October 1924.

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