Taking the trolley to Dobbs?

I recently came across a photo that made me wonder whether a trolley once ran through the Emory campus, although that seems farfetched, and nothing I’ve read or heard has ever suggested it.

Dobbs Hall, named for donor and trustee Samuel Candler Dobbs, a nephew of Asa Candler Sr., originally housed theology and law students when it opened in 1916 as one of the first two residence halls on the Druid Hills campus. The building — made for student life before radio, let alone television, stereos, hair-dryers, coffee makers, microwave ovens, mini-fridges, George Foreman grills, and computers with their accessory printers — still houses first-year students in Emory College, for whom the cramped shared rooms build “esprit de corps.”

In 1962, to accommodate a growing student body, Emory built a concrete addition, which you can see in the photo below. Taken last week, the photo is not great, but it offers the same perspective as the next photo, in black and white, which was taken perhaps in the 1930s or 1940s.

Dobbs Hall 2018

Screen Shot 2018-06-11 at 1.04.13 PM

The street going off to the right in the second photo is the current Dickey Drive, formerly called Pierce Drive until a realignment of streets in the early 2000s (named for earlier Emory presidents James E. Dickey and George Foster Pierce). The street going up to the left was formerly called Arkwright Drive and is now simply a sidewalk between Dobbs Hall and the Woodruff Physical Education Center and soccer field. (Preston Arkwright was an early 20th-century trustee and the first president of Georgia Power.)

What caught my attention in this photo is the overhead wires going up Arkwright Drive. They look like trolley wires, but they may be simply power lines serving nearby buildings.

Below is another photo of Dobbs Hall from roughly the same perspective in March 1960, two years before the addition of the back section of the building.

Screen Shot 2018-06-11 at 1.20.57 PM

I would love to hear from any former residents of the building who have stories about life in Dobbs.

Gary Hauk

 

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