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Carolina Story: Virtual Museum of University History

Spencer Hall, the first dormitory for women, 1925

At the beginning of the twentieth century, students lived in the buildings that surround the Old Well: Old East, South Building, Old West, New East, and New West. Others lived in fraternity houses located between Swain Hall and Franklin Street until fire destroyed them in 1919 and forced the societies to build new houses at the corner of Cameron and Columbia Streets. Because demand for admissions grew sharply during the 1920s, the university undertook a major building campaign and constructed ten new dormitories that decade, including the first one for women, which opened in 1925 and which was named in honor of Cornelia Phillips Spencer.