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O. C. Lewis Gymnasium

Raising the Roof

O. C. Lewis Gymnasium, now part of Kardatzke Wellness Center, was built in 1962 to provide a larger gymnasium for students at Anderson College. The first gym on campus was Byrum Hall, which had been remodeled in 1936 and was being used as a women’s gym at the time of Lewis Gymnasium’s construction.

The new gymnasium had 20,500 square feet of space on the main floor and 6,835 square feet in the balcony area. This space included a regulation basketball court and two practice and intramural courts. The bleachers could seat 2,600 people for a basketball game and more for other events. The building also contained two classrooms, a training room, locker room facilities, and storage space.

O. C. Lewis Gymnasium’s most notable feature is its roof, which features two arches measuring 227 feet from corner to corner. At the time, it was said to be the world’s largest cross vault laminated wood structure.

The building was named for O. C. Lewis, a businessman and influential church layperson in Sikeston, Missouri. 

References

  • Callen, Barry L. Guide of Soul and Mind: The Story of Anderson University. Anderson: Warner Press, 1992. Print.
  • "Campus Buildings" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives
  • "O. C. Lewis Gym" Folder, A.C./A.U. Buildings Documents, Anderson University and Church of God Archives