Ask Gerty: Building History

September 11, 2017

Dear Gerty,


Now that classes have started and my initial concerns have disappeared, a wave of curiosity has fallen over me. Despite sitting down for numerous lectures in various buildings across the campus, I can’t shake the feeling that there is still plenty about the college that I don’t know! I have read up on certain aspects of the history, including your history with Bergstrom Hall, but I want to know more. I call upon you in my time of need, Gerty, to ask that you would answer this question: what is the history behind the buildings of the St. Norbert College campus? I want the good, the bad, AND the mysterious...

Curious First-Year Honors Student

Dear Curious First Year Honors Student,


I cannot possibly express how flattered I am that of all the structures you could have researched you chose my namesake as your first assignment! It is an honor. While I cannot divulge the entirety of my knowledge pertaining to the St. Norbert college campus, I do have the time and the CIA’s permission to talk briefly about a couple important buildings!

Established in the year 1902, Main Hall is the building that you have likely walked past every single day since the semester started. While this was also the case for the students attending St. Norbert college back in 1902, it was very different considering that back then Main Hall was the ONLY building on campus! Since then I have seen the construction of residence halls, a new library, and much more that used to be contained all in one place. If the rumor is true, and if my hearing aid was working properly on the day I overheard it, the college’s previous president, Thomas Kunkel, secretly dug a system of tunnels below Main Hall! I suppose the cold Wisconsin weather can make a person do amazing things.

A stone’s throw away from Main Hall is where you will find Boyle Hall. If you truly are passionate about the history of this campus, Boyle Hall is the perfect spot because plenty of the college’s history professors reside here! Lectures in philosophy, theology, and English are also common occurrences here during the week. At night, you might find the rooms filled with students studying for exams or social groups convening in order to stay organized! The building is quite old, but I believe that it has only improved with age…like me! Although, I must admit- since the building has been around for so long, I am quite surprised that people still are not referring to it as Manne Hall like I suggested… 

The operatives next door are telling me that I have to suit up for my next mission, so I hope that this quick history lesson proved useful and informative! If you or anyone else in the Honors Program would like to know why I am about to dive into Mt. Kilimanjaro wearing a scuba suit and a red clown nose, feel free to send me an email at Then I am guaranteed to write a response! All questions are welcome. I will be sure to disclose any information about the adventure that is not classified!


Until then,

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