Prickly Pear, Yearbook of Abilene Christian University, 2006 Page: 7
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The new campus opened in September for the 1929-1930 school year. It included a new administration
building, two dormitories, an education building, a dining hall, a president's home, a gymnasium and
Mr. and Mrs. John G. Hardin hand ACC trustees
a gift of $160,000 in bonds in 1934. The gift
helped save the school from financial problems
during the Great Depression.
Joseph Hampton stands in from of the "Chem
Shack" on the new ACC campus. The building
was moved from the old campus to house the
chemistry department in 1937.
After the stock market
crash on Oct. 29, 1929,
loans and salary cuts kept
ACC from closing. Faculty
salaries were initially cut by
10 percent and then cut in
half for the next year.
Elmer Gray becomes
the first ACC student to
compete in the Olympic
trials in track and field. He
advanced to the semifinals
and finished in 5th place in
the 800 meters.
at Lectureship that a large
monetary gift will keep
the school open during
the Depression. The gift
of $160,000 in bonds was
given by Mr. and Mrs.John
After the stock market crash of 1929, ACC found itself
in the midst of financial struggles during the Great Depression
of the 1930s. In the early years of the 1930s, the school
had debts coming due and began to struggle to pay its faculty
and keep the school open. Many faculty salaries were
cut as much as 50 percent in an effort to save money. Dr.
Walter H. Adams, who had taken a position at the school in
1931, received a reduced salary of $100 per month during
the early years of the Depression.
Bastell Baxter resigned as president in 1932 to become
president of David Lipscomb College in Nashville, and
James Cox became ACC's sixth president. Under the leadership
of Baxter and Cox, the school was able to survive the
financial strains of the Depression. To help add more building
space for the college, a temporary frame building from
the old campus was moved to the new campus in 1937. The
building housed the Chemistry Department and became
known by many as the"Chem Shack:'
In 1936, the school announced a monetary gift from Mr.
and Mrs. John G. Hardin that would help save the college
from its financial burden. Students celebrated the news of
the gift of $160,000 in bonds by ringing the Old Bean Bell,
which then cracked and no longer rang. Hardin, who was
also a major contributor to Hardin-Simmons University,
later allowed the school to borrow $40,000 more to help
with financial struggles.
During the 1930s, the college saw two significant sports
moments in its history. In 1932, Elmer Gray became the first
student to compete in the Olympic trials when he competed
in the U.S. Olympic trials in track and field. He finished
fifth in the 800 meters semi-finals in Palo Alto, Calif. In
1939, the ACC football team defeated McMurry during the
Homecoming game to become co-champions of the Texas
Conference, winning its first football league championship.
To relieve space problems, a
frame building from the old
campus is moved in three
sections on flatbed trucks
and reassembled on the
new campus. The building
became known as the
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Abilene Christian University. Prickly Pear, Yearbook of Abilene Christian University, 2006, yearbook, 2006; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth39882/m1/10/: accessed January 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Abilene Christian University Library.