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March 21st Clemson Historic Picture Of The Day

Tillman Hall Auditorium In The 1950’s


(Photo Uploaded By Alan Cutts)

Today’s photo is a view of the auditorium inside of Tillman Hall during the 50s. This view is not much different than how it looked right up until the time the auditorium was completely
re-done in the 1980s.

Prior to that renovation, Tillman Hall was built in 1892 remained almost unchanged for 100 years.

In this picture, Clemson was in the last few years of being a Military College. Clemson University was founded in 1889 as a legacy of Thomas Green Clemson, who willed his Fort Hill plantation home, its surrounding farmlands and forest, and other property to the state of South Carolina to establish a technical and scientific institution for the state. Clemson College formally opened in July 1893 with an enrollment of 446. From the beginning, the college was an all-male military school.

It remained this way until 1955 when the change was made to "civilian" status for students and Clemson became a coeducational institution. In 1964 the college was renamed Clemson University as the state Legislature formally recognized the school's expanded academic offerings and research pursuits.

Tillman Auditorium is a large 820 seat auditorium located in Tillman Hall. It is managed through Clemson Major Events and TigerPaw Productions. It hosts university speakers and campus events, ranging from Orientation skits to FCA meetings to Zeta Tau Alpha's Big Man on Campus.

Currently boasting orange stadium-style seats, the auditorium once had much more traditional seating as the Chapel, and hosted Clemson's first graduation ceremonies.

Tillman Hall also has a history of hosting concerts throughout the years. The following groups/artists performed in Tillman Hall:
The Amazing Randi
Dave Brubeck Quartet
Crack the Sky
Dixie Dregs
Goose Creek Symphony
Hydra With Opening act Rock Mountain
James Taylor
Jimmy Buffet
Martin Mull and His Fabulous Furniture
Paul Winter Consort
Peter Yarrow Band
Renaissance
Sea Level

Note: In yesterday’s blog, the picture was of Johnstone Hall. That picture prompted several emails from Clemson alum that had their own stories to tell about Johnstone. As always, feel free to email me additional information about the pictures and stories you see posted and I may use them in future blogs.

CUTIGERTIM is a ’68 graduate of Clemson and lived in Johnstone. Here is what he had to say:
“Wow this is a historic picture. At one time the information window shown was where freshman picked up their football tickets and was the original location of sleeping bags and all night lines. You also paid your "deputy dawg" parking tickets in that location. Another tidbit on the tin cans was that the halls were constructed wide enough for platoon formations thus after the corp was dropped they served an excellent place for "Hall Hockey". You took the wooden chair provided in your room and placed one at each end of the hall. You wrapped a tin of your ROTC shoe polish in electric tape (the puck). You divided into 2 teams and took the broom (Hockey stick) they provided to sweep your VAT tile floors with and depending what wing and floor you were on you might have found a keg on the hall on the weekends. Who said there was no entertainment in Clemson in the old days?! We did not need a Chic-Fil-A. We had Hall Hockey and bottle rocket wars from the ledges of the Tin Cans.”

Scott Rhymer can be reached at scottrhymer.tps@gmail.com

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