The University of Michigan, an encyclopedic survey ... Wilfred B. Shaw, editor.
University of Michigan.
Chemistry and Pharmacy Building

The University Chemistry and Pharmacy Building is on the north side of the campus, east of the Mall which extends from the General Library to the Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies. It occupies the site of the first University Hospital, which incorporated one of the four Professors' Houses, the first buildings on the campus.

The original Chemistry Laboratory, later occupied by the departments of Pharmacology and Economics, was completed in 1856 and gradually expanded until the department moved into new quarters in 1909. Construction of a new Chemistry Building was approved by the Regents at their meeting of June 5, 1908. The Building Committee was authorized to prepare plans for the Page  1608building, the cost of which was not to exceed $225,000. This amount was insufficient to complete the building as designed, however, and the plans were revised by the architects, Smith, Hinchman and Grylls, of Detroit. This delayed construction until October of the same year. The final cost of the building, completed in 1910, was $271,000.

This structure is 230 feet in length and 130 feet in width, with a floor area of 114,600 square feet. It comprises two interior courts separated by a central wing or crossbar. An addition, designed by Louis Kingscott and Associates and built by Bryant and Detwiler, was completed in 1949. It was made an integral part of the original structure. The addition has one light court and consists of a basement and four floors; it has approximately the same amount of usable floor space as the original part. The building in 1954 was valued at $3,205,000 and the equipment at $521,000.

The building is four stories high with a basement under the new part, and is constructed of buff Bedford limestone and brick in varying shades of light brown. It is fireproof with reinforced concrete columns and floors and hollow brick and cinder-block partitions. It was one of the first buildings on the campus to employ the construction system of regularly spaced concrete piers.

In general, the arrangement of the complete building consists of three long corridors, one on the east and one on the west side of the older part and one on the east side of the new part; these corridors connect the large laboratories occupying the north and south ends of the building. The long west corridor (000) is connected to the central one (200) by a corridor (100) across the middle of the older part, and the long central one (200) is connected to the east one (500) by two corridors (300 and 400) on each side of the light court in the new part.

On the first floor, in addition to an amphitheater with a seating capacity of 290 in the south court of the older part, there are three lecture rooms with seating capacities of 131, 144, and 230, as well as two smaller classrooms. The offices of the College of Pharmacy and the Prescription Laboratory are on the east (500) corridor, and a large introductory pharmacy laboratory is at the southeast corner of the building. The dock for loading and unloading supplies is adjacent to the large receiving and shipping room of the Chemistry Store Department on the 300 corridor and the offices of the Chemistry Stores Department on the 500 corridor. The remainder of the first floor is used for work in physical chemistry — offices, research rooms, and four large laboratories including one which is specially equipped for teaching electrochemistry. The dispensing room on the 500 corridor handles student supplies for physical chemistry and pharmacy. Facilities for electrochemistry, comprising a general laboratory, research rooms, and instructors' offices, occupy the outside tier of rooms along the west corridor.

On the second floor, are the offices of the Department of Chemistry in the center of the 000 corridor. The well-equipped library, is at the south end of the older part of the building. It accommodates 108 readers and contains about 15,000 bound volumes. Four large laboratories devoted to organic chemistry occupy the north end of the building, and one large research laboratory for organic chemistry and a large pharmacy laboratory are in the southeast corner. Most of the remaining rooms on the second floor are for members of the staff of the College of Pharmacy, for research in pharmaceutical chemistry, and for faculty and student research in organic chemistry. A departmental glassblower and a dispensing room for supplies for organic Page  1609chemistry and for quantitative analysis courses and some pharmacy classrooms are on this floor.

Six large laboratories on the third floor are for the several courses in analytical chemistry, including qualitative, quantitative, and instrumental analysis; semimicroanalysis is taught in a smaller laboratory. Rooms for analytical balances are adjacent to the laboratories. Also on this floor are a lecture room seating about ninety, a College of Pharmacy laboratory for pharmacognosy, research laboratories for pharmacy, and a room where approximately thirty teaching fellows in chemistry have office space. Four rooms are devoted to studies involving radioactivity — one in which to teach students how to handle and use such materials, one, the "hot-lab," where experimental work with the more radioactive substances can be performed safely, and two rooms equipped with instruments for measuring the activity. The work of the dispensing room on this floor is directed toward supplying the reagent shelves of the student laboratories in the building.

General chemistry is taught in five large laboratories, qualitative analysis in two, and graduate research students occupy the eighth large laboratory on the fourth floor. A small laboratory is devoted to courses in advanced inorganic chemistry. A number of rooms are assigned to equipment and research work connected with electron diffraction and X-ray studies.

The basement under the east part of the building houses the units which heat the oil-filtered air supplied to the newest part of the structure. Electrical supply rooms and large areas for storage of glass equipment, chemicals, and other supplies handled by Chemistry Stores are also there. The College of Pharmacy has an area in the basement for equipment for the manufacturing pharmacy processes, and the Department of Chemistry also has its shops for the fabrication and repair of research apparatus there. A number of small laboratories in this area are used for research work; these include space for high-pressure equipment, special distilling columns, and other equipment for organic chemistry research. Two of the laboratories are designed for work requiring controlled temperature and humidity conditions. One is refrigerated for work which requires low temperatures, and several are lined with copper-coated paper to reduce electrostatic effects.

The main service lines enter through tunnels underneath the building and are distributed by means of accessible riser stacks from which they fan out to the separate rooms. In the new part of the building, the hoods are exhausted by fans in a penthouse. The motors on the exhaust system are two-speed and maintain a continual air flow at all times. Two water stills, one in the older and one in the newer part, furnish distilled water to the building and are connected so that in an emergency either one could supply the whole building.