Laramie Plains Civic Center
East Side School
Laramie Plains Civic Center in 2014
|Location||710 East Garfield St., Laramie, Wyoming|
|Area||less than one acre|
|NRHP reference #||81000610|
|Added to NRHP||March 17, 1981|
The Laramie Plains Civic Center was established in 1982 in the old East Side School in Laramie, Wyoming. The original portion of the complex was built in 1878 and was the oldest public school building in Wyoming. It was expanded in 1928 and 1939, and closed as a school in 1979. The civic center provides performing, studio and gallery space for visual and performing arts, as well as office and small business space.
The East Side School was established as a high school in 1878, the oldest purpose-built school building in Wyoming. The cornerstone ceremony was a major public event, and was apparently notable for an absence of public drunkenness on that day. The school was expanded in 1928 and 1939. It became a junior high school when a new high school was built and finally closed in 1978. Plans were immediately put into place to adapt the building as a community center, which opened in 1982.
The original Italianate brick school had four classrooms on the main level and two above, resembling the first Laramie courthouse. The 1928 expansion was designed by architect Wilbur Hitchcock and was built in a stripped-down Gothic style, with pointed arch accents in limestone panels in an otherwise plain facade. It added classrooms, an auditorium and a gymnasium. The auditorium decoration was unusually detailed, with oil-on-canvas murals 19 feet (5.8 m) tall depicting scenes from Wyoming history. The murals were painted by Florence Ware, whose father Walter E. Ware assisted in the design and took over architectural duties after Hitchcock was killed in a car accident in California.
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
- "Tenants". Laramie Plains Civic Center. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
- "History". Laramie Plains Civic Center. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
- Hansen, Matilda (November 17, 1979). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory - Nomination Form: East Side School" (PDF). National Park Service.