Encyclopedia Brunoniana

Lincoln Field Building

The Lincoln Field Building was erected in 1903 as the Engineering Building. It was designed by Clark and Howe of Providence and built by Maguire and Penniman of Providence. Three stories high, it was built with a view to solidity and maximum light. The second floor was supported by large beams to hold heavy machinery. The top floor’s “saw tooth” skylights, facing north, were particularly adapted to a room used for drafting. The student handbook described the new building as “mill-type” construction and called it “Machinery Hall.” When Professor William H. Kenerson first sought new quarters for engineering, he had to convince Arnold Buffum Chace, Chancellor of the University, who was not in favor of engineering education and felt that $25,000 was too much to spend. After a trip with Kenerson to view Stevens Institute of Technology, Chace persuaded the University to erect the engineering building at a cost of about $85,000. Chace still opposed the use of new-fangled electric lighting in the building and insisted on kerosene lamps. The engineers were able to acquired a small steam driven generator, wired the building themselves, and for a number of years produced their own current. When more space was needed, a temporary structure was added on the east side of the building. Built of sheet iron and unfinished inside, the addition was unheated until the engineers, with their usual ingenuity, placed a big blower in a duct between the two sections and forced warm air into the addition. Engineering acquired new quarters in the Barus-Holley Building, built in 1964. The Lincoln Field Building is now occupied by the Department of Geological Sciences.