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About this collection

Duke University was designed by the firm of Horace Trumbauer, Architect, of Philadelphia, and built between 1925 and 1932. At the time it was the largest construction project ever undertaken in the South. The cost came to just over 21 million dollars.

This digital collection contains a small sampling of the records produced during the design and construction of the university's east and west campuses. The materials include memoranda, correspondence, speeches, photographs, invoices, contracts, payroll sheets, brochures, news stories, a scrapbook, and an extract from a memoir.

The photographs include over 600 professionally-taken "Progress Pictures" that document the construction project. Major subjects include campus architecture and design, construction practices in the 1920s, and the project's impact on Durham. Durham business firms and organizations represented include the Nello Teer Company, the Durham Lumber Company, and the Durham Rotary Club. Individuals represented include Horace Trumbauer, Julian F. Abele, Frank Clyde Brown, B.M. Hall, William Preston Few, Alice M. Baldwin, Robert Lee Flowers, and Doris Duke. Notable events documented are a tour of college and university campuses made by W.P. Few and F.C. Brown, and the setting of the University's cornerstone. The trowels pictured in the collection logo belonged to Pete Ferettino (ca. 1911-1983), a stonemason who worked on the Duke Chapel, and were a gift of the family.

 
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