Behind the building: Evans Complex

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The new Evans building was constructed in the 1950s and latter renovated to what is now known as the Evans Complex.Evans was two separate buildings before the construction. In the fall of 1986, the Coordinating Board of Texas Colleges and Universities approved the plans to renovate the Music I and Evans buildings. A small unit was build to join the departments into a single educational complex. The total cost for the renovation and construction was approximately $2.5 million. The building was then used for the English and foreign language programs. This building was named after George Pirtle Evans, an SHSU English professor.Evans was born in Memphis, Tenn., to George W. Evans, a Methodist minister, and Alice Pirtle Evans, on March 16, 1896. He attended grammar schools in Tennessee and Kentucky, and then attended Heywood County High School in Brownsville, Tenn.In the fall of 1914, Evans enrolled in Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., where he participated in the Literary Society, was a member of Alpha Tau Omega fraternity and editor in chief for the Vanderbilt Hustler. He also was the assistant editor for the school yearbook. Evans graduated with a bachelor of science on June 12,1917. That same day, he enlisted in Battery D, 114th Field Artillery. He served 25 months, and then became a soldier student at Oxford University, but was discharged in July 1919, with a commission in reserve corps.From 1919 to 1922, Evans taught English and was the headmaster at Centenary Collage Academy in Shreveport, La. In 1923, Evans went back to school and completed a master degree in English from University of Chicago. He taught English at the University of Texas until, in 1925, he decided to teach at Sam Houston State University. Evans taught at SHSU for only five years. He was given a leave of absence to teach at Leland Stanford University and the University of Texas.Although Evans did not return to SHSU, his name is forever part of the campus.