Debevoise Hall - Historic "Old Classroom Building" Renovated
Debevoise Hall, a strikingly elegant structure built in 1893 as South Royalton’s first centralized graded school, anchors the Vermont Law School campus. Its distinctive bell tower—eight tiny triangular dormers whimsically circle the roofline—can be seen from anywhere in the surrounding village and by travelers on Interstate 89. The building has long been a local landmark and symbol of education for the community and was Vermont Law School’s original home. “Four generations of young scholars from the town and surrounding areas were summoned to their classes by the tower’s bell,” writes Professor and former President and Dean L. Kinvin Wroth, “…and its solid tones are still heard on ceremonial occasions.”
The law school was forced to take a hard look at its revered “old classroom building” after the completion in 1998 of James L. and Evelena S. Oakes Hall, which provided eight new high-tech classrooms and a courtroom. The most practical and economical move might have been to tear down the old building and build a new one to consolidate faculty and administration offices at the campus core. Instead, under former Dean Wroth’s leadership, the school continued a commitment to preserving the quality of the surrounding village and environment by accepting a unique challenge: to adapt the deteriorating, historic landmark to take on new life as an environmentally sound, “green building” at the center of the community and campus.
Debevoise Hall has been renovated to include modern, resource—saving technology while carefully preserving the integrity of the historic structure. Learn more about the environmental features of Debevoise Hall.