Earhart Hall History

Earhart Hall opened in 1964 and was named after famous aviatrix Amelia Earhart. Amelia Earhart first came to Purdue University when the campus had enrollment of 4,700 students and one residence hall for women. In 1936, Amelia joined the Purdue staff and resided in what is now known as Duhme Hall in the Windsor complex. She began an association with the University in a dual role as consultant in careers for women and as technical advisor to the Department of Aeronautics. She talked with many students, but the women living in the residence hall felt especially privileged to know her in the informal setting of their daily lives. She seldom spoke of her achievements in aviation, but rather of vocational aptitudes, goals and careers for women.

In 1936 the Purdue Research Foundation established the Amelia Earhart Fund for Aeronautical Research that made it possible for Amelia to purchase an Electra airplane, which she referred to as a "flying laboratory." It was equipped to do experimental work on speed and fuel consumption under varying conditions; television experimentation; the use of oxygen; radio communication and navigation instruments and methods; and the human equation of fatigue and endurance in relation to altitude, diet, sleep and eyestrain. A year later when Miss Earhart was on an around-the-world trip, the plane crashed on takeoff from Luke Field near Honolulu. Miss Earhart and members of her crew were not injured. The plane was sent back to Los Angeles for repairs.

Her second attempt at an around-the-world flight ended in her disappearance on July 2, 1937, when her plane presumably crashed near Howland Island in the Pacific Ocean.