Naming Tillman Hall: Consulting Primary Sources

Naming Tillman Hall: Consulting Primary Sources

Primary source documents* from the Special Collections Library reveal events surrounding the naming of Tillman Hall in 1946.  

Click on each description to see each document. 


Engineering building named for Walter M. Riggs 


Agricultural building named for William W. Long


Dedication of  Thomas Green Clemson statue in front of the Administration Building


March 11-12, 1946:

Letter and Minutes of the Buildings and Grounds Committee 

May 14-15, 1946:

Letter and Minutes of the Buildings and Grounds Committee with Report of the Sub-committee on Names

May 16, 1946:

Letter and Minutes of the Buildings and Grounds Committee

May 18, 1946:

B. R. Tillman, Class of 1896, address to alumni on the 50th anniversary of Clemson College’s first graduation

May 20, 1946:

B.R. Tillman letter to Clemson President R.F. Poole, noting “I am grateful beyond words for your efforts to have the main building known[?] and named Tillman building.”

June 28, 1946:

The Board of Trustees approves the naming of Tillman Hall, as well as Simpson Hall, Johnstone Hall, Morrison Road and Colonial Circle.

No alterations were made to the building after the naming.

July 12, 1946:

The Tiger article announcing new building and road names

May 1947:

Clemson News Review article announcing to alumni the naming of Tillman Hall



B.R. Tillman periodically lived in Clemson and worked on a biography of his father. He became close to President Poole and promised to donate his father’s papers to Clemson after his death.

After B.R. Tillman’s death in 1950, Benjamin Ryan Tillman’s papers, including B.R. Tillman’s unpublished biography, became part of the Clemson Library collection (see here and here).


*[ “A primary source is a document, image or artifact … created contemporaneously with the event under discussion.” (Williams, Historian’s Toolbox, 2nd ed., p. 56). For more information on primary sources, see this guide.]