Duke Renames a Dormintory That Honored a Segregation-Era Governor

Governor Aycock

Duke University has decided to rename Aycock Hall, a student dormitory on campus. The original name of the building – East Residence Hall – has been restored.

Aycock Hall was named for Charles Brantley Aycock, who served as governor of North Carolina from 1901 to 1905. While Governor Aycock was a strong advocate for public education, he also was a staunch segregationist and led efforts to disenfranchise Black voters in the state.

In a letter to the campus community, Richard H. Brodhead, president of Duke University, wrote, “The decision to change the name of a building on the Duke campus is not taken lightly. When a building is named at Duke, there must be the strongest possible presumption that the name will be permanent. . . . After careful consideration, we believe it is no longer appropriate to honor a figure who played so active a role in the history that counters the values of inclusion and nondiscrimination that are key parts of the university’s mission.”

A plaque detailing the history of the building and its name will be placed in the lobby of East Residence Hall.

The newly renamed East Residence Hall at Duke University
The newly renamed East Residence Hall at Duke University

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