Lyman room
Eric Vines '92 (left) relaxes in his room in E Section of Lyman House with Patrick McBride '94. This photo was taken in 1990, when Vines was an RA in Lyman. Photo credit: Whitman College and Northwest Archives

Designed by the architecture firm Lawrence & Holford and built in 1923, Lyman House is the oldest residence hall on campus today. It was named in honor of history professor William Denison Lyman, who taught at Whitman from 1889 to 1920.

Originally, Lyman was a men’s dormitory, but between 1946 and 1949, it became a women’s residence hall and men were moved to an alternative location on Rose Street. It is now a co-ed, mixed-class hall housing 89 students.

Since the construction of Lyman, Whitman College has added Prentiss Hall (1926), Anderson Hall (1954), Jewett Hall (1964) and Douglas Hall (1970). Whitman also purchased North Hall in 1978, though no new residences have been built in more than 45 years.

A new initiative known as Living at Whitman, which has the goal of building community among Whitman students and the campus as a whole, will soon become increasingly important. It focuses on building new housing and dining facilities, and aims to provide more community and support for a student population that has grown by more than 400 since the most recent residence hall was constructed.