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Floors

Located in the above-ground floors of Old Main were the administrative offices, faculty offices, class rooms, lectures halls, and at one time even a natural history museum. To take a virtual tour of what the Third floor of Old Main would have looked like, please visit out 3D Virtual Tour developed by former intern Dave Watt (2012).

The Third Floor: ISNU Natural History Museum

Click the link below to read a detailed timeline of the ISNU Natural History Museum written by former intern Dave Watt.

ISNU Natural History Museum Timeline

Museum

From Transactions of the Illinois State Agricultural Society, vol. 4, 1859-60, ed. John P. Reynolds (Springfield: Bailhache & Baker, Printers, 1861).

The Third Floor: ISNU Debate Societies

The Philadelphian Debate Society, originally named the Normal Debating Society, was the first ISNU debate society established four days after the university opened in 1857. In 1858, a rift among members led to the establishment of a competing society called the Wrightonian Debate Society. Both societies were given rooms adjacent to one another on the third floor of Old Main, named the Philadelphian and Wrightonian Halls, where members met and conducted society business until the condemning and subsequent removal of the third Floor in 1946.

To learn more about the ISNU debate societies, click the link below to read an essay written by former intern Dave Watt and former graduate assistant Jessica Miller:

The Philadelphian and Wrightonian Societies

Philadelphian Hall (Image taken from The Index, 1896)

Wrightonian Hall (Image taken from The Index, 1896)

 

John Wesley Powell and the Establishment of the ISNU Natural History Museum

Click the link below to read a paper written by former intern Dave Watt about John Wesley Powell’s involvement in the development of the ISNU Natural History Museum, formerly housed on the third floor of Old Main.

John Wesley Powell Essay

Powell seated at his desk. (Image taken from the University of Toronto website)

 

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OldMainProject@IllinoisState.edu

Old Main Project
Normal, Il 61790-4660
Phone: (309) 438-8668

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