Located atop a scenic hill in Mobile, Alabama, Spring Hill College has enjoyed a long reputation for excellence in the Jesuit tradition.
In fact, Spring HIll College is the state’s oldest institution of higher learning, founded in 1830 by Mobile’s first Catholic bishop. Spring Hill is also the first Catholic college in the Southeast, the third oldest Jesuit college and the fifth oldest Catholic college in the United States. Besides these historic accomplishments, it’s currently ranked by Forbes.com as one of America’s Best Colleges. Additionally, Spring Hill College was one of the first Southern colleges to integrate racially, and was even mentioned by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who praises Spring Hill in his 1963 Letter From Birmingham Jail.
A college with such a notable history and strong presence deserves to have a beautiful campus. Two of the buildings on campus, the Arlene Mitchell Theater and the Arthur R. Outlaw Recreation Center, prominently feature Meranti wood from OHC. Meranti was chosen primarily for its beauty and as an essential component of the campus’ tropical colonial architecture, which combines red tropical hardwoods with white stucco and other white elements.
Meranti is an excellent species for the balmy, tropical location, as this species of wood naturally resists damp conditions.
Students and other patrons of the Arlene Mitchell Theater enter through a set of large, handsome Meranti doors and transoms, immediately stepping into an inviting lobby lined with Tongue And Groove Meranti panelling stretching from floor to ceiling. The dramatic entry is appropriate to the drama that takes place inside the theater. Tongue And Groove panelling, which is a ¼” or ⅛” bevel on two of the edges of the face of the board, enhances the appearance of the wood by calling attention to the length of the board and the height of the wall. This technique is purely aesthetic, and is machined in-house by OHC.
The lobby of the Arthur R. Outlaw Recreation Center also features beautiful Meranti elements. A large trophy case lined with Tongue And Groove Meranti panelling contains the many athletic awards earned by Spring Hill College students over the years. The awards deserve to shine in a beautiful home, and the warm, rich Meranti handsomely contains them. The railings and bannisters in the Rec Center are also crafted from Meranti. They’re beautiful, and are durable enough to withstand the large numbers of students and community members who attend games, classes, and other events in the building.