Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Encyclopedia of Baldwin Wallace University History: 1940s

An Index of Historical Content and Their Sources

1940: Construction of the Burrell Memorial Observatory

Citation: Kieth A. Peppers, 2020.

An astronomical observatory was possible through the gift of Mrs. Burrell. She offered $75,000 for its construction and the necessary equipment. Mrs. Burrell generously provided the gift as a memorial to her husband who worked with the Warner and Swasey Company of Cleveland, Ohio. The company specialized in the manufacturing of tools, instruments, and specialized machinery. When completed, the newly opened Burrell Observatory was described as the largest of its kind in this part of the country.

1943: V-12 Program Comes to B-W

Citation: Kieth A. Peppers, 2020.

 

World War II came to B-W via the V-12 College Training Program, a government-funded program with the purpose of producing technically-trained personnel for the U.S. Navy. Various requirements were placed on the university such as providing housing for a new influx of students, constructing a pool for training exercises, and alterations to the academic calendar. A trailer park became a feature of north campus as many involved in the V-12 Program lived there alongside their spouses. One of the more prominent BW alumni enrolled in the V-12 Program was Lee Tressel, who would become football coach and athletic director of B-W.

1943: Scarlet fever epidemic

Citation: Ryan Cross and Debby Vespoli, "Through the Years...," Pursuit, Fall, 1995, vol. 27, no. 1, pg. 6.

In March, 1943, an epidemic hit the campus as 221 faculty and students tested positive for scarlet fever and were sent home.

1944: Dedication of Swimming Pool

Citation: “New Swimming Pool,” Baldwin-Wallace College News Letter 10, no. 4 (1944): p. 3.

The new swimming pool at Baldwin- Wallace was formally dedicated on Wednesday, February 23, at 4:00 p. m. At 4:30 the dedicatory service was held within the new structure. The architects, Mellenbrook, Foley and Scott, formally presented the building. It was accepted by Mr. A. Fred Crossman, chairman, for the Board of Trustees, by President Louis C. Wright for the administration, and by Coach Ray Watts for the Department of Physical Education. Each of these persons spoke briefly, and Acting-Chaplain Dr. Ernest Knautz offered the dedicatory prayer.

1946: Enrollment rates rise

Citation: Ryan Cross and Debby Vespoli, "Through the Years...," Pursuit, Fall, 1995, vol. 27, no. 1, pg. 6.

Enrollment tripled between 1934 and 1946. The Centennial campaign reached its goal of $900,000 and five campus facilities were built: Merner-Pfeiffer Hall, Burrell Memorial Observatory, the President's Home, the athletic field and stadium and Ursprung Gymnasium

1946: Evening classes established

Citation: Ryan Cross and Debby Vespoli, "Through the Years...," Pursuit, Fall, 1995, vol. 27, no. 1, pg. 7.

In 1946, as returning veterans came back to school, evening classes were established to handle the overflow from day classes. This supplementary program grew and in 1965 it became possible for students to earn their degrees solely in evening classes. 

1948: Harrison Dillard wins Olympic gold

Citation: Ryan Cross and Debby Vespoli, "Through the Years...," Pursuit, Fall, 1995, vol. 27, no. 1, pg. 7.

In 1948, while still a B-W student, Harrison Dillard '49 won the first two of his four Olympic gold medals in track. Later, he became a charter member of the Olympic Hall of Fame. 

1949: John Knight becomes president

Citation: Ryan Cross and Debby Vespoli, "Through the Years...," Pursuit, Fall, 1995, vol. 27, no. 1, pg. 7.

In 1949, 34-year old John Knight became the fourth president of Baldwin-Wallace, serving until 1954.