I’ve written about this building a couple of times before but mostly to bemoan the lack of information about it. We do know that it was built in a big hurry in the spring and summer of 1941 and designed by William Ward Watkin in a style described as “modernistic.”
Hidden behind the power plant, it was rarely photographed but here’s the outside, which I agree you’d have to call modernistic:
So imagine my surprise when I came across photos of the inside of the building that show it to be not just traditional but absolutely cozy. This first one was taken in the fall of 1941, just after it opened–note the wood paneling:
The second one, taken in 1943 and showing the Rice Naval ROTC staff, is even more surprising. It almost looks like faux colonial. Very unexpected.
Bonus: We had a firetruck today!