Metcalf Chemical Laboratory was built in 1923 with a gift of $450,000 from Jesse Houghton Metcalf as a memorial to his father, Jesse Metcalf. The building, which extends from the corner of Thayer and Waterman Streets, was designed by Day and Klauder and had as contractor Edward Conning Company of New York. Professor James William McBain came from Bristol University in England to deliver the principal address at the dedication of the building on October 10, 1923. When Jesse Metcalf presented the golden key to the building, there was attached to it a check for $25,000 to be added to the $75,000 he had already given for endowment of the building. Manton Metcalf had also contributed $100,000 toward the endowment of the Department of Chemistry.