Pollard hall is named after John G. Pollard, who was a Democratic Attorney General, as well as the 51st governor of Virginia. John Pollard was the Governor of Virginia during the Great Depression, from 1930 to 1934. During his term as Governor of Virginia, he opposed Roosevelt’s New Deal and dealt with the economic fallout of the Great Depression. In 1930 he gave $40,000 for a new dining hall, and Pollard Hall was named after him. This was due to his contributions to the school and for his love of music.(1)(2)
Pollard Hall was built in 1951 along with Melchers Hall. These halls flank duPont Hall and help make up the circular base of the total halls. In 1990; these buildings underwent a renovation as it was previously described by students as “a rathole.” Due to a bond issued in 1994, UMW was given 4.3 million dollars in order to renovate it. (3)
Fun Fact: The building along with duPont Hall was able to play host to an event in which a part of the General Assembly of Virginia attended, in 1985. (1)
(1) William B. Crawley Jr., University of Mary Washington: A Centennial History, 1908-2008 (North Carolina: BW&A Books, Inc., 2008.)
(2) “UMW Fine Arts Complex,” Historic Buildings of the University of Mary Washington homepage, Accessed March 13, 2020. http://buildings.umwblogs.org/umw-fine-arts-complex/
(3) Michael Spencer, University of Mary Washington: Preservation Plan-80% Draft (Fredericksburg, VA: Department of Historic Preservation, June 8, 2014), page 120.