Laboratory Row (1885—1909) SR
These solid, picturesque brick structures, most of which are exemplary of the college’s “ivy-covered halls,” were constructed to house many departments of the Michigan Agricultural College, including:
Over the years, as the departments grew, most of these buildings became too small to house them and larger replacements were constructed elsewhere on campus. Beginning in the 1920s the laboratory row was repeatedly threatened with demolition, and one—the original Veterinary Lab, which stood just to the southwest of the existing row—was razed. (It is not included in the State Historic Register listing for the row.)
The 1926 campus plan by T. Glenn Philips, campus landscape architect, proposed replacing the row (excepting Agriculture Hall) with a single, double-wing office and classroom building. Although much of Philips’ plan was adopted, a lack of capital precluded reuse of the row site. A 1958 proposal, during the heyday of Hannah-era expansion, likewise opted to replace the row with a single large building, this one to house the Basic College (which included Social Science, Humanities, and other departments). Somehow, in a period of extremely low regard for historic preservation, the little laboratories escaped the wrecking ball.[M.S.U. 2020 Vision]
Today, the laboratories have benefitted from adaptive reuse, and contain classrooms as well as office space for such departments as Agriculture, Economics, and the Honors College.
The Horticulture Laboratory, known today as Eustace–Cole Hall, is listed separately on the State Historic Register.