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  Altgeld in the snow
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Altgeld in the snow  

Altgeld Hall

Completed in 1897, this building was designed by Nathan C. Ricker and James M. White. Ricker was the first graduate from the University of Illinois architecture program, which was among the first such programs in the nation. With the exception of a mosaic floor in the entrance hall, the building's entire design was created by students and graduates of the University of Illinois Department of Architecture. The building originally served as the University Library. In 1927 the College of Law moved in, and it now houses the math and actuarial science departments. Altgeld Hall was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970.

The Altgeld bell tower, created specifically to house the chimes, was dedicated at Homecoming 1920. The set of 15 chimes was a gift from the graduating classes of 1914-1921 and weighs over seven and a half tons. The largest bell weighs over 3,000 pounds, and the smallest bell weighs in at 500 pounds. The chimes are missing two notes (D# and Fnat), the two notes not necessary to play Illinois fight songs. A fundraising campaign is attempting to turn the 15 chime set into a 49-bell carillon, thereby fulfilling the dream of the Chimesmaster Emeritus, Albert E. Marien, who tolled the bells for 37 years.

View Altgeld Hall on the campus map.

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Related Information

Listen to Sue Wood, University Chimesmaster