Venable Hall

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Venable Hall
Venable Hall at Hampden–Sydney College
Venable Hall at Hampden–Sydney. Front facade, from the north.
Etymology Richard Venable
General information
Type Dormitory
Architectural style Federal
Location Hampden Sydney, Virginia
Country United States
Coordinates 37°14′25″N 78°27′39″W / 37.240361°N 78.46092°W / 37.240361; -78.46092Coordinates: 37°14′25″N 78°27′39″W / 37.240361°N 78.46092°W / 37.240361; -78.46092[1]
Current tenants Hampden–Sydney College
Construction started 1824
Completed 1830
Owner Hampden–Sydney College
Technical details
Floor count 4
Design and construction
Architect Dabney Cosby, Reuben and John Perry
Union Theological Seminary (Venable Hall) c. 1830s

Venable Hall is a dormitory at Hampden–Sydney College in southside Virginia. Built in sections from 1824 to 1830, Venable Hall is the second oldest dormitory on Hampden–Sydney's campus. The building is listed in the Virginia Landmarks Register (1969) and on the National Register of Historic Places (1970)[2] as a contributing property to Hampden–Sydney College Historic District.


Construction of Venable Hall began in 1824 and was completed in three separate phases by 1830. The building was designed and constructed by Dabney Cosby (from Raleigh, North Carolina)[3] in the Federal style of architecture and designed to complement Cushing Hall.

When completed in 1830, the building was the home of the Union Theological Seminary. Venable Hall provided the first Presbyterian seminary in the South and eventually became the head institution of the Southern Presbyterian Church. The seminary existed in Hampden–Sydney until 1898 when it moved to its current location in Richmond.[3]

Subsequent to the Seminary's move to Richmond, Major Richard Venable, Hampden–Sydney Class of 1857, bought its buildings for $10,000 and gave them to the College, doubling the size of the campus. Named in his honor, Venable Hall is now a residence hall and contains the Parents & Friends Lounge, the former Seminary chapel.[4] Graduation, typically held in May, is conducted in the front lawn of Venable Hall.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Google (October 30, 2014). "Venable Hall, Hampden–Sydney, VA 23943" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved October 30, 2014. 
  2. ^ [1], Master List of Virginia Landmarks Register and National Register of Historic Places
  3. ^ a b The Council of Independent Colleges, Historic Campus Architecture Project
  4. ^ Hampden–Sydney Buildings, H-SC Then & Now