D.H. Hill Library was not the first library at NC State. Not surprisingly, the university’s first library was housed on the second floor of the only building on campus of the North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts at the time — Holladay Hall. Most of the books initially came from gifts from faculty and friends of the college.
In 1903, the library moved to the first floor of the new Pullen Hall, according to an account in North Carolina State University, a Narrative History, by Alice Elizabeth Reagan. “It was not until 1911 that the library collection reached 5,000 volumes, and the 10,000 volume mark was not reached until well into the 1920s,” Reagan wrote.
In 1925, Brooks Hall was built as the college’s first official library, built on the recommendation of the Alumni Association.
But the library needed more room. So, on this day in 1955, the east wing of the new D.H. Hill Library was formally dedicated, even though it had opened in 1953. (Brooks Hall, meanwhile, went on to become home to the School of Design.)
D.H. Hill Library was built in four stages, with the east wing first. The west wing, or Erdahl-Cloyd Student Union, was next. The two bookstack towers followed.
The library is named for Daniel Harvey Hill Jr., a professor of English and bookkeeping (as well as a part-time librarian) when the North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts first opened. Hill was one of the college’s first five faculty members, and went on to be the college’s vice president and then, in 1908, the college’s third president.
After his retirement as president in 1916, Hill became the college’s librarian.