From its colorful stained glass to its lush murals, University Archivist, Geoff Williams talks about why the University at Albany's Thomas E. Dewey Graduate Library is an historic treasure.
In September 1941, Sayles Hall was opened as a men's dormitory with accomodations for 134 students. The dormitory also contained a billiard room, gymnasium, and dining hall. Sayles Hall had been dedicated and formally named on Alumni Weekend, June 14, 1941. Purchase of the land and the construction of the building was funded by donations to the Alumni Association, which voted to name the building for then Acting President John M. Sayles, in recognition of his many years of service to the Association.
John M. Sayles
As the long time chairman of the Alumni Association's funding arm, the Dormitory Committee of the Benevolent Association, Sayles, with Anna E. Pierce, is widely credited with successfully guiding the fund-raising campaign that purchased the land comprising Alumni Quadrangle and built the first two dormitories on the site, Pierce and Sayles Halls.
The Dewey Graduate Library is located in Hawley Hall on the Downtown Campus of the University at Albany and has had several names during its incarnation as a library, including the Hawley Library.
Gideon Hawley (1785-1870), is widely known as the creator of the common or public elementary schools in New York. He served as the first superintendent of the common schools in New York (1812-1821). As a member of the Regents (1842-70), Hawley is credited with helping to establish the New York State Normal School (as the University at Albany was then known). Hawley served as a member of the State Normal Schoolâ€™s first Executive Committee (1844-1852) which helped to win permanent state funding for the new school.