Balcony Entrance

Inside Kenyon Hall, Emporia, Kansas – 3rd Floor – Wild color and murals were among the biggest surprises as I explored the upper reaches of Kenyon Hall. After the College of Emporia closed in 1973, it was owned for a time by “The Way”, a controversial Christian movement which used the site for faculty offices and classrooms. The Way installed the red carpeting in the chapel, and made other improvements. By all accounts I’ve heard, they took good care of the properties. Part of the changes in Kenyon Hall, which I am told happened after the Way owned the building, include the full wall murals, the beach scene above, biblical tableaus, wild swirling patterns, and vivid street-graffiti style paintings. With the current deterioration many of the areas seem a little creepy. I can’t show what it was like when the building was populated with something other that birds and squirrels, only what I find there now. Photos will be posted over the next several days.

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4 Comments

  1. Robert Kruh

    Really crazy colours 🙂 Nice composition!

  2. Richard Woolf

    Your photos of Kenyon Hall at Emporia College are fascinating and disturbing at the same time.

    I attended the Way College of Emporia in the years 1984-1985 and lived at Emporia Hall (which has since been demolished).

    From my memory there were no painted murals on any of the walls. The building was very well kept and looked like a typical old college auditorium. It is sad to see the building in such poor and neglected shape.

    It is clear that whomever moved into the building after The Way left (or at least, after I left) was a free-thinking artist who had few boundries. Your photos showing their passion displayed in and on a classic old college building are very moving.

  3. Scott Farris

    I attened the college from 1982 to 1985 and every building on campus was kept immaculately clean. This was definatley the work of reprobates.

  4. Casandra

    The third floor of this building (pictured) was renovated into a youth center. The wall was a beach scene and there was a boardwalk in front of it. I'm so sad to see how the place was destroyed. It is even worse now. So much for the restoration promise. 🙁

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