Falls Hall formally decommissioned by President Trauth, students, staff
By Billi London-Gray
Beside the chain link construction fence and amidst the beeps and grinding sounds of bulldozers, a crowd of former residents, students, staff and faculty gathered on the Concho Green at Texas State University to say farewell to Falls Hall.
To commemorate the building and the people who have called it home, the university hosted a decommissioning ceremony and reception February 28. The residence hall, which opened in 1966, has housed an estimated 10,000 Texas State students during its 45 years of service.
“It’s wonderful to think about the fact that Falls Hall has seen five decades of Texas State history,” Texas State President Denise Trauth said in her opening remarks. “She’s performed a great service for our university, building a sense of community among her residents, forming lifelong friendships among them, and connecting them to the university.”
The hall was named for Elizabeth Falls, an education instructor who retired from Texas State in 1938 and died in 1950. In addition to her role as a specialist in elementary education, Falls organized a chapter of the American Childhood Education Organization at Texas State and contributed many special education books to the university library.
Dr. Roseanne Proite, director of the Department of Housing and Residential Life, led former Falls Hall residents and staff in filling a box with memorabilia from Falls Hall. The contents, which will be held in the University Archives, include: a list of all the Falls Hall residence directors, a photo of Elizabeth Falls, newspaper articles about the hall’s opening, 1979-80 Hall of the Year and 1996-97 Program of the Year award plaques, a 2010 Falls Hall T-shirt, and a commemorative plaque made from a Falls Hall mailbox.
Commemorative mailbox plaques, like the one placed in the University Archives, will be available for purchase from the university in late March. Proceeds from the sale of the plaques will fund a scholarship established in Elizabeth Falls’ name.
The demolition of Falls Hall will be completed in March. The site, located at Moon Street and University Drive, will become home to the new Texas State University Performing Arts Center, set to open in 2013.
“Falls Hall is giving up her very prominent place to a very important cause,” said Trauth. “It’s a site that’s going to connect the campus to the larger community, making our performances available to larger audiences. And it’s going to provide a beautiful gateway into this campus. It’s a worthy successor for Falls Hall.
“As we bid farewell to one old friend,” Trauth concluded, “we welcome a new one.”
Read more about the history of Falls Hall on the Texas State Blog.