Robert E. Lee Hall
Blue Ridge Assembly Campus, SR 2720, Black Mountain vicinity, NC
Designed gratis by architect Louis Jallade, the large Colonial Revival building was completed in the year of contractorDavid Getaz’s death, and his son James is reported to have superintended construction. The campus was established as a training center for student Christian leaders and a home for student conferences of the YMCA. Annual conferences began at the University of Tennessee in 1892 and were held at various sites in western North Carolina. Willis D. Weatherford, the International Student Secretary of the YMCA for colleges in the south and southwest, sought to establish a permanent campus, and when he visited this beautiful site in the Swannanoa Valley in 1906 reportedly exclaimed “Eureka!” An architectural drawing for the main building, long known as Robert E. Lee Hall, appeared in a 1910 pamphlet, and by the summer of 1912 the building was ready for the opening conference. It also served as a summer hotel. Additional buildings were constructed over the years. Weatherford, active in organizing the Commission of Interracial Cooperation, saved the campus from a foreclosure sale in 1932. The famous Black Mountain College began operation in Lee Hall in September, 1933, renting it for the winter school year; in 1941 the college established its own campus several miles away. In 2015 the name of the main building was changed from Robert E. Lee Hall to Eureka Hall.