In celebrating the legacy of Wilkes University’s second president, Dr. Francis J. Michelini, the former Barre Hall was dedicated as Francis J. Michelini Hall on Nov. 10, 2015 in his honor.
Dr. Michelini was the first Wilkes president to ascend from the academic ranks. He joined Wilkes in 1955 as the third full-time faculty member in the biology department. In 1963, he became dean of academic affairs, where he would leave his mark in the development of programs and majors.
After becoming president, Dr. Michelini – known to many as “Dr. Mike” -- helped to
ensure the University’s survival after the devastating flood caused by Hurricane Agnes
in 1972, leading campus recovery efforts and ensuring Wilkes was ready for classes
in the fall.
Barre Hall History
If you were at Wilkes before 1970 you could only admire the stately brick house on the corner. Barre Hall did not become part of our "West River" neighborhood until 1970, when Wilkes purchased the property and named it after Colonel Isaac Barre -- the second campus building named to honor the famous colonel. The first was located at 154 South River Street, but was demolished in 1971, to make room for Stark Learning Center.
The tall-gabled home at West River and West Ross Streets was built circa 1873, as a home for Richard Sharpe, the founder of a local mining firm. Its architecture is characteristic of the High Victorian Gothic style popular in the mid- to late-nineteenth century.
On Nov. 10, 2015 the former Barre Hall was re-dedicated as Francis J. Michelini Hall in honor of Wilkes University's 2 president, Dr. Francis J. Michelini.