Historic Images and Information about the Georgia Tech Towers


Probably the best-known symbol for the Georgia Institute of Technology is the "Tech Tower." Now commonly known as the Administration Building, it was the first building on the campus and was originally called the Academic building. All classrooms were located here, as well as the laboratories and the library. Next door, to the west, was the Shop Building, which held the machine and wood shops.

The Academic building was designed by the Atlanta architectural firm of Bruce and Morgan. Angus McGilvray was selected as the contractor based on his low bid of $43,250. Construction began in June of 1887 and was completed in September of the following year.

The Shop Building was as ornate as its neighbor and even had its own "tower." Also designed by Bruce and Morgan, construction began in April 1888 and was completed just five months later. Unfortunately, this interesting structure was destroyed by fire in 1892. It was rebuilt without the tower and then razed in 1969. The "steam engine" (actually a steam driven air compressor) sits on the site as a reminder of Tech's roots.

From the first Annual Catalogue: "The school occupies a beautiful site, in a campus of nine acres, lying at the junction of North Avenue and Cherry Street, easily accessible by street car lines on Marietta Street and on North Avenue. The Academic Building is a splendid edifice of brick, trimmed with granite and terra cotta, slate roof. It has one hundred and thirty feet front, is one hundred and twenty deep and is four stories high above basement story. It contains ample accomodations in halls, offices, apparatus rooms, recitation and lecture rooms, free hand and mechanical drawing rooms, library and chapel.

"The workshop is also of brick, two hundred and fifty feet long by eighty feet wide, and two stories high. It is beautifully designed with reference to its use, and affords ample space for the various departments of instruction pursued in it. It contains boiler and engine rooms, wood shop, machine shop, forge room and foundry."

Georgia School of Technology
Entrance Examination

Newspaper Articles

Illustrations from the 1888-89 Catalogue

Post Cards

Interior Photographs

Exterior Photographs

Floor Plans

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