Campus Places & Student Spaces

Dodd Hall Entrance

As we return this summer and to a more normal fall, let’s take a closer look at some of the most familiar landmarks on the Tallahassee campus. If you are new to Florida State, here’s a peek into some our historic places and spaces. For more information about FSU history visit Heritage & University Archives.

University Libraries, ca. 1880’s

The library began as a small collection of books and then took up a room of its own within College Hall, the main campus building of the Seminary West of the Suwannee. When the new Administration Building was created, the library was installed there. In 1923, as the Florida State College for Women, the first purpose built library on campus was built and is now the FSU Heritage Museum in Dodd Hall. In 1956, Strozier Library opened to accommodate our growing campus. The University Libraries comprise eight libraries on the Tallahassee campus as well as several other libraries, museums, and research centers worldwide.

James D. Westcott Memorial Building, 1909

The Administration Building was created to replace College Hall, and sits just behind where it was located. Early on, it was a gathering space for students, special events and graduations, as well as to welcome visitors. The original auditorium was completed in 1911, and the fountain was added in 1919. It was renamed for Westcott in 1936. The building was almost destroyed by fire in 1969. It continues to be one of the most visited spot on campus, and traditionally graduates dip their class rings in the fountain.

Suwannee Room – Dining Hall, 1913

The Suwannee Room was constructed for the Florida State College for Women and had its own garden for fresh vegetables on the west side. It was later connected to the William Johnston Building in 1938. “Dining Hall Girls” could work in Suwannee to cover their room and board. In 1947, it was transformed into the Suwannee Room Cafeteria and has undergone several major renovations since.

The Rez Lakefront Park & Retreat, 1916

Students of the Florida State College for Women visited Lake Bradford for rest and relaxation. With the purchase of six acres of adjacent land, the school set up permanent residence for boating, swimming, and camping. Later named Camp Flastacowo in 1923, and then The Reservation in 1954, the recreation area now encompasses 73 acres.

Student Union, 1938

The union first occupied the Rowena Longmire Student Alumnae Building, which opened the fall of 1940 and was both a student and faculty activity center. Spaces for the Alumni Association, Student Government Association, Campus Publications, and accommodations for visitors were included. Due to the increasing population of campus, the new FSU Student Center opened in 1952 to an enrollment of just less than 5,000. It included a snack bar, jukebox, and a room for dancing that later became the post office. The Center was expanded and reopened as the University Union in 1964. Additions and connections in 1974 created the Oglesby Union Complex. Several renovations have occurred over the years, with current construction poised to finish in 2022.

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