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Tuskegee Institute in Macon County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Dining and Social Center

 

—Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site —

 
Dining and Social Center Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, March 11, 2017
1. Dining and Social Center Marker
Inscription. The young women all seated first, and then the young men march in. But no conversation is allowed until . . . a simple grace is chanted by the chorus of a thousand voices. —Booker T. Washington, The Working Hands

Gold-domed Tompkins Hall, one of the grandest buildings on campus, serves as the school's dining and social center. Since 1910 students have gathered here to attend concerts, dances, and meetings of clubs and other organizations.

During World War II the facility housed a recreation room and entertainment area for enlisted men, including the famed Tuskegee Airmen. In the 1960s Tompkins Hall became focal point for student civil rights activities.

[Photo captions]
{Top Right}: Air cadets attend a Tompkins Hall party.

{Main Photo}: Early students learned about nutrition and etiquette at the dining hall.

 
Erected by the National Park Service, Department of the Interior.
 
Location. 32° 25.771′ N, 85° 42.289′ W. Marker is in Tuskegee Institute, Alabama, in Macon County. Marker can be reached from University Avenue 0.2 miles east of Booker T. Washington Boulevard. Touch for map. Marker located within
Tompkins Hall image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, March 11, 2017
2. Tompkins Hall
the Tuskegee University Campus quadrangle. Marker is at or near this postal address: University Avenue, Tuskegee Institute AL 36088, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. White Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); Campus Architect (within shouting distance of this marker); Historic Quadrangle (within shouting distance of this marker); Huntington Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); Great Philanthropists (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Frederick Douglass Hall (about 300 feet away); Managing the School (about 300 feet away); The Oaks (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Tuskegee Institute.
 
Regarding Dining and Social Center. Tuskegee University is a private, historically Black university established in 1881. The campus has been designated as the Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site, a National Historic Landmark. Tuskegee University's campus is the only school in the United States to hold this distinction.

The building includes a ballroom, an auditorium, a game room, a retail restaurant, and a 24-hour student study with healthy food vending machines.

Built in 1906, Tompkins Hall served as the primary student dining facility until its closure in February 2011 due to roof damage and other structural problems. Several options were put in place to accommodate the students after Tompkins’ closure, including cooking food off-site at a former elementary school’s cafeteria in the City of Tuskegee and transporting it back for students. Chambliss Business House was remodeled in the summer of 2011 and served as the temporary dining hall until this fall semester.
 
Categories. African AmericansEducationNotable BuildingsNotable Persons
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on March 12, 2017. This page originally submitted on March 12, 2017, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 142 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on March 12, 2017, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.
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