Ruth Carman Hall, completed November 14, 1971, officially opened its doors to the first “Carmanites” on September 4, 1970. Construction costs for the two tower, 816 bed building, neared five million dollars. The ten-story north tower opened to 397 women in the fall of 1971 while construction was being finished on the highest floor.
Construction delays caused by strikes and lack of materials caused of Carman Hall to not be completed for the first semester of operation. In a petition to President Quincy Doundna, Carmanites expressed their concerns with “no food service, no laundry facilities, no recreation room, and no lighted walkways.” The first ladies of Carman Hall collected 308 signatures that ultimately led to a $12.00 reduction of fees for the fall semester and a $1 a week reduction for the continuation of construction to the hall into the spring semester. The ladies of Carman Hall did not have long to wait for competition as food services for Carman Hall were completed on January 13, 1971.
During the fall of 1971, Carman Hall became one of the first coed buildings on Eastern’s campus as the nine-story South tower opened its doors to the first gentlemen Carmanites. The addition of the 384 bed south tower made Carman the largest residence hall complex on Eastern’s campus. As there were both men’s and women’s Residence Hall Associations, both north and south towers of Carman Hall had separate hall governments during the first year of coeducational living. The two councils combined forces the following year and the two towers have functioned as a single entity since that time.
The dedication of Carman Hall took place on Sunday, November 14, 1971. “Carman Capers,” the
hall’s newspaper, reported that residents of Carman served as entertainment and ceremony leaders for the dinner. The ceremony was not only attended by Ruth Carman and her closest family but by University President Gilbert Fite, Vice President Glenn Williams and, Dean of Housing Donald Kluge, as well. Ruth Carman, an Eastern alumna is the first former student to have a building dedicated in her honor.