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.