Gerrard Hall

  • Forest Theatre
  • Gerrard Hall
  • Ackland Art Museum
  • Hanes Art Center
  • Kenan Music Building
  • Hill Hall
  • Memorial Hall
  • Center for the Study of the American South
  • The Center for Dramatic Art
  • Student Union Galleries, Great Hall and Cabaret
  • Bull's Head Bookshop
  • Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History
  • Carolina Inn - Fridays on the Front Porch

Completed in 1837, Gerrard Hall was designed and built by William Nichols. The cornerstone was laid for “New Chapel” in 1822, but construction was intermittent until 1837, when the building was completed. The funding source was money realized from the sale of 14,000 acres of land left to the University by Major Charles Gerrard, who died in 1797. (The Gerrard Society is the name of the recognition group for donors of deferred gifts such as bequests, charitable remainder trusts and gift annuities.)

The building continued to be used as a chapel through the 1800s. It was condemned in 1935, then remodeled in 1938 with a grant obtained from the U.S. government. This small auditorium has hosted a variety of speakers and events. The North Carolina General Assembly met there on Carolina’s Bicentennial University Day in 1993; addresses by U.S. Presidents Polk, Buchanan and Wilson; slave poet George Moses Horton lectured there in 1859; and Langston Hughes spoke and read poetry in 1931. A key scene in the Robin Williams movie “Patch Adams” was filmed in Gerrard Hall.