Beardshear Hall photo

Beardshear Hall

Official abbreviation: BDSHR

Constructed in 1906

Space in this building

104,292 total square feet

Floor Plans

All rooms in this building

Departments and space usage

Emergency Maps from Environmental Health and Safety

Building Open Hours

These don't reflect business hours for offices within the building; see office websites for business hours.
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
6:00 AM -
6:00 PM
6:00 AM -
6:00 PM
6:00 AM -
6:00 PM
6:00 AM -
6:00 PM
6:00 AM -
6:00 PM
Building Supervisor:


Street Address:

AMES, IA 50011-2103


See this building on the online campus map

See this building on Google Maps

Nearby parking lots

3D SketchUp Model from the Trimble Warehouse

Services / Maintenance / Projects

Current FP&M maintenance requests and projects

Utility outage log

Custodial Service is provided by Custodial Team 1

See rooms serviced in this building

Mail Service by Postal and Parcel Services

  • 9:40 AM: Collection / Delivery (Room 0110)
  • 1:30 PM: Collection / Delivery (Room 0110)
  • 2:55 PM: Collection only (Room 0110)

Recycling locations in this building

To request service, call 294-5100 or issue an online service request.


Almost immediately after a fire in 1900 damaged the north wing of Old Main, the principal building on Iowa State's campus, discussion about the construction of a new building began. There was consensus that a new building was needed, but a suitable location was difficult to find. A second fire to Old Main in 1902, this time destroying the building in its entirety, effectively answered the question of where to locate the new building - right where Old Main had been.

Because of the fires in Old Main, fire proofing of the new building was a high priority. As a result, fire proof buff Bedford stones were used extensively in the construction of the new Central Building. Massive scagliola columns were used in the interior, columns so like marble that even experts were deceived. The building materials were so fireproof that only the hardwood furniture was capable of burning.

The Central Building originally housed the Office of the President, the Departments of English, Mathematics, Botany, History, Modern Languages, and Elocution, the Office of the Secretary and Treasurer, and the Office of the Board of Trustees. In 1938 the building was renamed Beardshear Hall, after William Beardshear, the president of the institution during the planning and construction stages of Central Building. By the mid 1970s all classes in Beardshear Hall had been relocated to other buildings on campus, leaving the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost, and the Office of the Vice President for Business as the most prominent offices in the building. Other offices directly impacting student life still located in Beardshear hall include the Office of Student Financial Aid and the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs.