Structure Type: built works - public buildings - assembly halls; built works - public buildings - schools - high schools

Designers: Kump, Ernest J., Sr., Architect (firm); Ernest Joseph Kump Sr. (architect)

Dates: constructed 1929

1900 7th Street
Wasco, CA 93280

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The architect Ernest Kump, Sr., father of the better known architect, Ernest Kump, Jr., designed this American Renaissance Revival style auditorium for the Wasco Union High School.

Building History

The architect Ernest Kump, Sr., (1888-1939), who worked in both Fresno and Bakersfield, CA, designed the grand Wasco Union High School Auditorium in the American Renaissance Revival style. As such, it was a late expression of this Italian Renaissance-derived style often used on prominent governmental or high-profile commercial buildings. The heyday of the American Renaissance style fell between 1876 and World War I.

The auditorium was designed likely in 1928-1929, at the time that Ernest Kump Sr., was transitioning between working with partner A.O. Johnson and working on his own.

Building Notes

Wasco High School Auditorium was placed on the National Registry of Historic Buildings. In composition, it resembled other American Renaissance Revival buildings of the time, such as architect Albert Kahn's William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan (1923), the first rare books and special collections library at any American university or college.

While the exterior of the building had a unified style, its interior decor was very eclectic reflecting Neoclassical, Art Deco and other influences. Its diverse interior design resembled that of some contemporary movie palaces.

National Register of Historic Places (September 30, 1997): 97001188 NRHP Images (pdf) NHRP Registration Form (pdf)

PCAD id: 16479