The Early Century

Growth during the war years occurred amid fierce debate in the legislature over a proposal to consolidate both campuses on the farm campus. Put to the vote of the people in 1915, the proposal was defeated, and work was begun anew for expansion on both campuses.

The orderly development of the farm campus, under the scrutiny of Chancellor Andrews, included a number of large, buff-brick buildings arranged around a central mall. Despite this classical arrangement, the campus retained the feel of the countryside, with its barns, livestock and test fields.

City campus, on the other hand, developed in a variety of styles, experiencing rapid growth in the postwar years of the 1920s. This period brought such monumental structures as Social Sciences Hall, now home to the College of Business Administration, and Morrill Hall, also known as the University of Nebraska State Museum. Millions of visitors have passed through its massive colonnades to view astonishing displays of prehistory, including the remarkable exhibition known as Elephant Hall. The 1920s also saw the continued rise of athletic excellence at the University of Nebraska with the construction of two large-scale sports complexes - Memorial Stadium and the Nebraska Coliseum.

Hail Varsity

The years surrounding World War II boomed with the beat of more construction - the student union, large classroom halls, and Love Memorial Library, whose stacks served as a barracks during World War II. Today , University Libraries houses more than 2.5 million volumes located in the main library and in branch libraries on both campuses.

Two years after the formal dedication of Love Library in 1947, another landmark was dedicated near the center of campus - the Mueller Carillon Tower. Its chimes have been marking time on campus ever since.

Taking to the Sky

In the late 1950s NU's enrollment soared with its skyline, climbing from 8,000 students in 1959 to nearly 20,000 just 10 years later. Buildings for laboratories, classrooms and student housing dwarfed earlier structures.

The massive growth in the 1960s transformed the university into the institution it is today. The farm campus outgrew its name and became East Campus. Surrounded by busy city streets, East Campus has retained much of the natural beauty and open spaces that are its heritage, including the lush Maxwell Arboretum. It has diversified in mission, today serving as home to the colleges of Law and Dentistry, the Barkley Memorial Center for Hearing and Speech Disorders, the Division of Continuing Studies and the Nebraska Educational Television Network.

In 1969 the "University of Nebraska," a phrase which had theretofore described the university chartered in 1869 and located in Lincoln, was redefined as an umbrella organization for three campuses. To its name the former University of Nebraska appended the name of its host city to become the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, joining the University of Nebraska at Omaha (the former Metropolitan University of Omaha), and the University of Nebraska Medical Center. Twenty-two years later yet another institution was added to the system, the University of Nebraska at Kearney (formerly Kearney State College).

Building Boom

The 1990s saw the start of another building boom on campus, with the construction of such large scale facilities as the Beadle Center for Biomaterials Research, the Kauffman Center residential learning community, a new building for Teachers College, and major expansions of Memorial Stadium and the Nebraska Union. In the new millennium, several notable new buildings have opened, including the Quilt Study Center and the Ken Morrison Life Sciences Research Center on East Campus, as well as new apartment-style residence halls on City Campus.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln begins the 21st century with a mission deeply rooted in its status as a land grant university. It is of national and international influence, with students from every state and more than 100 nations. It is a research university at the forefront of discovery in the humanities and sciences. It is as it has always been, a place of pioneer spirit and restlessness, forever seeking the horizon.

Love Memorial Library
HAMILTON HALL (background), with "Old Glory" by Mark di Suvero (foreground).

Love Memorial Library