Six Decades of Growth
1882 – Founded as Findlay College by the Churches of God, General Conference (then Churches of God in North America) and the citizens of the city of Findlay.
1883 - Work on the foundation walls and basement began in the fall. Foundation rock was hauled by horse and wagon to the College grounds. Limestone, cut stone, brick and lumber from the local area were all used in the construction of Old Main.
1884 - While it was under construction, the building suffered from vandals who punched holes through the plastering and defaced the walls.
1885 - After completing the masonry and roofing by December 1884, Old Main lay dormant for a year for lack of funds to complete it.
1886 - Findlay College opened on Sept. 1, 1886, with the first 70 students holding classes on the third floor while carpenters completed the first and second floors.
1890 - A gymnasium was added in the basement. In 1903, the gym was moved to the southeast wing of the first floor. The floor between the first and second stories was removed to give more space to play basketball.
1890 – A conservatory of music opened.
1892 – Black and orange were adopted as the school colors.
1893 – Findlay College purchased the Findlay Business College and the Conservatory of Music.
1905-06 - A steam heating plant was installed and Old Main was completely rewired.
1912 - The tower, which had begun to settle, was lowered a story and a half because it was deemed unstable.
1912 – Findlay’s first “night school” was listed in the 1912-13 Catalogue.
1912 - The College Church of God, which held worship services in Old Main, remodeled the chapel (now Ritz Auditorium) by adding an elevated floor, enlarging the platform and installing new lights. Three windows on the west wall of the chapel were bricked up. The College provided the new opera chairs by asking alumni and friends to contribute $2 per chair.
1923 - The Griffith Memorial Arch was erected directly in front of Old Main as a memorial to Caddie Griffith ’09, a former student and faculty member, who died of influenza. It was donated by her parents, who lived on Frazer Street and were active members of the College Church of God.
1925 – The Physical Culture Hall was constructed, including a basketball court, showers, dressing rooms and lockers. It was named Renninger Gymnasium in 1982 in honor of former professor, coach and athletic director Donald Renninger ’40.
1933 – The Carrothers Home, the official residence of the President located at 1115 North Main Street, was built. It was named after an early benefactor and trustee, George Carrothers, who had donated a frame house as the home of the President in 1907.
1938 - A fire broke out in the basement of Old Main at approximately 1 a.m. on May 27. Although mostly confined to the basement and first floor from the main entrance south, fire reached the third floor. The entire building suffered smoke and heat damage. Damage was estimated at $75,000 and the cause was never determined.
1938 - Repair and remodeling as a result of the fire included replacing wooden floors with steel girders and concrete. The north and south stairwells were completely enclosed and new ground floor exits were built. The building was rewired, plumbing was improved and a new radiation heating system installed. The entire interior was repainted, mostly in two-color combinations of light green, with the hallways in buff and ivory. The ceilings were white.
1942 – Findlay College established the Winebrenner Graduate School of Divinity and the Music Conservatory closed.
1955-56 -The first major alteration to Old Main was the extension of the first floor towards the west to accommodate an additional 25,000 volumes for the library.
1955 – Myers Residence Hall for men was built.
1957 - A student union, called “The Cave,” was located in the basement of Old main under the new library extension.
1959 – The women acquired a residence hall with the construction of Lovett Hall.
1961 – The Alumni Memorial Union and the William B. Brewer Science Hall were added to campus.
1961 – The graduate school was separated from Findlay College in June to become Winebrenner Theological Seminary.
1963 – The Egner Fine Arts Center opened, with the theatre completed in 1964; and Morey Residence Hall for men was built.
1966 – Fox Residence Hall for men opened.
1968 – Shafer Library opened with President and Mrs. Ivan Frick, 53 faculty members and 460 students moving approximately 55,000 books from the library in Old Main to the new building.
1969 – Croy Physical Education Center opened with a gymnasium and the Sink natatorium and Deming Residence Hall for women was added to Lovett Hall, which included Henderson Dining Hall.
1970 – Bare Residence Hall for men was constructed.
1971 – The College’s radio station, WVFC-AM, began broadcasting on campus. It was a carrier station, sending out its signal only to the dormitories, 40 hours a week. Later that year, station time increased to 63