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The Bechtel & Tanner Rooms

Bechtel Room

Bechtel Room
Photo © 2007 Veronica Bailey

The Bechtel Room (Emerson 107) is the faculty's lounge and meeting room. It is our grandest room and the location of receptions that are held after department colloquia.

The room is named for Edwin DeTurck Bechtel (A.B. 1903, A.M. 1904, J.D. 1908). A brief biography of Bechtel follows below.

A guide to the portraits in the Bechtel Room is available by clicking on the link.

From left to right: George Herbert Palmer, Josiah Royce, William James, and George Santayana.

Edwin DeTurck Bechtel was a graduate of department during the final years of the "Golden Age" of philosophy at Harvard. He was a generous benefactor of the department for many years.

In his professional life, Bechtel was an attorney. He spent his legal career at Carter, Ledyard & Milburn, practicing there from 1911 to 1948. He was also counsel to the American Express Company for many years.

In addition to practicing law, Bechtel was an authority on and scholar of the cultivation of roses, and wrote several works on the topic. Furthermore, he was an authority on the French artists, Honoré Daumier and Jacques Callot, publishing a book on each artist, respectively.

In regards to the Department of Philosophy, Bechtel served on the Visiting Committee for many years. Additionally, he established the Bechtel Prize and the prestigious Alfred North Whitehead Lectures.

Robbins Library holds his collection of philosophy books, along with other items of non-philosophical interest. Please click here to learn more about these.
Edwin Bechtel

Edwin DeTurck Bechtel
1880 - 1957
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Tanner Room

The Tanner Room (Emerson 310) is where most departmental seminars are held. The room is named for Obert C. Tanner. A brief biography of Tanner follows below.

At right is a photograph of the Tanner Room. Located on the third floor of Emerson Hall, the room faces the Carpenter Center, the Faculty Club, and the Fogg Art Museum.

On the left-hand wall hangs a portrait of Tanner, whose generosity funded the establishment of this room.
Tanner Room

Photo © 2007 Veronica Bailey

Obert C. Tanner

Obert C. Tanner
1904 - 1993
Obert C. Tanner was a philanthropist, businessman, and educator, who, thoughout the course of his life, was active in promoting scholarship and culture.

As the Utah History Encyclopedia entry notes, Tanner "established eleven philosophy library rooms at prestigious colleges and universities and has endowed more than a dozen lectureships, including the world-renowned 'Tanner Lectures on Human Values,' given annually at the University of Utah, University of California, Oxford, Harvard, Cambridge, Michigan, Stanford, Yale, and Princeton universities."

Tanner founded the O.C. Tanner Company in 1927 to provide class rings and pins to honor the achievements of high-school graduates. In the 1940s, Tanner expanded his line to include items for corporate recognition programs.

Along with his business ventures, Tanner was also an instructor in Religious Studies at Stanford University (1939-1944) and Professor of Philosophy at the University of Utah (1945-1972).

More information about Tanner can be found on the Tanner Lectures on Human Values Website, as well as in the Utah History Encyclopedia.
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