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Fowler Courts Residence Hall records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 43

Scope and Contents

The Fowler Courts Residence Hall records (1920s-1993; 1.2 cubic feet) document the history of Fowler Courts Residence Hall and Fowler House. The records include annual reports, orientation guidebooks and handbooks, faculty fellow directories, yearbooks and calendars. Also included are Purdue Residence Hall dress code standards and guest hours polices from the 1960s-1980s. Historical documents consist of background information on the closing of Harrison Street Courts and the transition to South Campus Courts, the naming of Fowler Courts, Fowler Courts awards and scholarships and the Courtier crest. Various memorabilia include a booklet compiled by former residents and staff, newsletters and programs. Photographs dating back to the Fowler Poultry Science Building are included; Fowler House, the area that became the kitchen and dining area for Fowler Courts residents used to be the old poultry show pavilion. The records are organized into six series:


  • 1954-1993


Access Information

Collection is open for research.

Copyright and Use Information

Copyright held by Purdue University.

Historical Information

The first Courtiers lived three blocks south of the Purdue Memorial Union on Harrison Street. These men lived in the first type of court building and called themselves the Harrison Hundred. The court style of housing was so successful that the Harrison Hundred soon became the “Courtier 1,000,” two years later, in 1955, when the new courts were built along State Street.

In the fall of 1965, State Street Courts were renamed Fowler Courts. This was done in honor of James M. Fowler who was born in Lafayette and who spent most of his life in the community. Few business projects in northwest Indiana were handled without some involvement of the Fowler family. Mr. Fowler gave much of the land on which the University stands and was treasurer of the Board of Trustees from 1890 until 1929; the year before he died. Fowler House, the main building in the courts and where the dining hall was located, was named after Mr. Fowler’s son and was formally named The Harriet Fowler and James M. Fowler Jr. Memorial House.

As the student organization in the Courts grew to include Residence Halls Apartments South, many special interest groups were formed, as well as the overall Courtier government. Because of the needs of these groups, facilities and equipment were soon made available for the residence hall radio station (WKHJ) and darkroom facilities for Courtier photographers, referred to as Photoshop.

Social programs also developed rapidly, and came to include two annual dances: Mistletoe Madness and the Snowflake Fantasy dinner dance in February. In addition to the annual events, several informal dances became traditional as well as events such as the Halloween Party, children’s Christmas party and Madan Carroll Boat Dance.

At the completion of the 1992-1993 school year, Fowler Courts were torn down to create parking spaces and to make way for what later became First Street Towers. Fowler House is currently used for the Department of Child Development and Family Studies. In July 2011, the Miller Child Learning Center and the CDFS Child Development Laboratory School were combined to form one facility with classrooms in Fowler Memorial House and Hanley Hall.
Sources): Orientation brochure, “Purdue University, The Courtiers, Student Union Courts and Fowler House,” 1976-1977

The Courtiers newsletter, 1992-93


1.20 Cubic Feet

3 mss._boxes


Annual reports, orientation guidebooks and handbooks, faculty fellow directories, yearbooks, calendars, photographs, historical information, including Purdue residence hall dress code standards and guest hours policies (1960s-1980s), and various memorabilia documenting the history of Fowler Courts and Fowler House.

Arrangement Note

1.  Annual Reports, 1954-1962 (0.05 cubic feet).  This series contains annual reports for the “Men’s Quadrangle,” “Union Courts and Fowler House,” and Fowler Courts. The annual report of the residence hall was presented each fiscal year to the university president by the hall manager. As indicated on the report form, “this report includes serious handicaps or regressions due to current conditions; outstanding achievements on the part of students; attendance of notable professional meetings; major publications by members of staff; unusual or noteworthy gifts; etc.” 2.  Annual Orientation Guidebooks and Handbooks, 1962-1993 (0.12 cubic feet). The orientation guidebooks and handbooks in this series contain information that was used to help new residents of Fowler Courts adjust to life at their residence hall. The guidebooks and pamphlets include topics such as hall history, facilities that were available, social events, sports, important phone numbers and residence hall government opportunities. 3.  Faculty Fellows Directories, 1976-1988 (0.07 cubic feet). The directories found here contain pictures, biographical information and contact information for the various Faculty Fellows over the years at Fowler Courts. A Faculty Fellow is a member of the faculty who is interested in getting to know the students on a one to one level. They are available to the students as a source of information about Purdue and post-graduation life. 4.  Fowler Courts Yearbooks, 1978-1984 (0.35 cubic feet).  This series is comprised of the first Fowler Courts yearbook, which started in 1978, thanks to financial support from the Joint Assembly at Fowler. In 1982, the silver anniversary edition was published to celebrate 25 years of Fowler Courts’ memories, and a copy can be found in the series. Two more yearbooks, 1982-83 and 1983-84 are also featured. The content of the yearbooks include photos of administrative staff, food staff, students and memories of fun times. 5.  Calendars, 1984-1989, (0.05 cubic feet).  “The Courtier” calendars in this series provided the residents of Fowler Courts, Fowler House and Residence Hall Apartments South with a yearly calendar of activities at the residence halls, including University activities. Also included with the calendars are hall maps; hall administrators and staff; key phone numbers; Courtier Club officers, constitution, budget and freshman council; hall highlights; awards; living standards; guest hours policy and other conduct policies. 6.  Photographs, Historical Information, Memorabilia and Artifacts, 1920s-1990 (0.4 cubic feet).  This series contains a wide assortment of items related to Fowler Courts and Fowler House history; photographs of Fowler Hall Poultry Building, which later became the Fowler House, the kitchen and dining area for Fowler Courts, circa 1920s-1950s; Purdue Residence Hall dress code and guest hour policies, 1960s-1980s; “Fond Memories of Fowler,1955-1993,” a booklet compiled by former Fowler Courts residents and staff, along with various memorabilia and information related to the history of Fowler Courts and Fowler House.

Acquisition Information

Legacy items; donors various and unknown. Courtier crests items and Fowler Poultry Science Building and Fowler House photographs donated by Marlene Sue Jacks, widow of Purdue alum, Merrill L. Jacks.

Processing Information

All materials have been housed in polyester sleeves, acid-free folders, and acid-free boxes. The material in each series is arranged chronologically.


Fowler Courts Residence Hall records
In Progress
Mary A. Sego
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 W. State Street
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States