Wonderful 100: E. S. King at NC State

E. S. King, who served as secretary of the YMCA chapter at NC State University, 1919-1955

E. S. King, who served as secretary of the YMCA chapter at NC State University, 1919-1955

E. S. King, speaking at a podium, 1960
E. S. King in 1960, after he had retired from NC State.

One hundred years ago in 1919, E. S. (Edward Scull) King came to NC State as secretary of the campus Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA). Although the "Y" was primarily a religious organization at that time, it also served as the campus social center (there was no student union then).

King (1887-1962) was a graduate of Guilford College, and he had worked in the YMCA at the University of South Carolina and Vanderbilt University before coming to NC State.  He served here until his retirement in 1955.  Through his position and long tenure, he was admired and liked by generations of students (he sometimes even helped them out financially).

YMCA Building (King Religious Center), ca. 1955
To honor E.S. King, the YMCA Building was renamed the King Religious Center.  Here is it depicted about 1955, when King retired.  It was demolished in 1975 to make way for Kamphoefner Hall.

A YMCA chapter existed on the NC State campus from 1889 until 1982, and it had its own building from 1912 to 1975.  The YMCA held Christian religious services and Bible study classes, produced various publications (including a handbook for freshmen and prospective students), and sponsored speakers and discussion groups.  The building contained a game room for students, a barbershop, and eventually a chapel (Danforth Chapel, where numerous students were married.)

In recognition of E.S. King's service, in 1959 the YMCA Building became known as the King Religious Center (it stood where Kamphoefner Hall is today).  After it was demolished in 1975, the university named King Village in his honor.

The NC State University Libraries' Special Collections Research Center contains a collection of E.S. King's papers (a collection guide exists online).  Also, within the University Archives are the Office of Religious Affairs Records (UA 016.036) that have detailed information on the NC State YMCA chapter (there is also has an online guide).  Please contact the Special Collections Research Center to arrange a visit to view these materials.