Replacing the old gymnasium, the Loyola Field House was completed in 1954. The largest basketball arena in the South when built, the facility was the site of New Orleans’ first non-segregated sporting event when Loyola played La Salle, the defending national basketball champions, in 1954.
The Loyola Field House could accommodate 6,500 people. It was neither heated nor equipped with air conditioning and fans were known to build small fires on the cement floors for warmth in the winter. Loyola discontinued intercollegiate athletic competition in 1972, so the building was renovated in the late 1970s to function as a recreation and intramural center.
In order to truly comprehend the size of this massive structure, check out this image of the Fieldhouse sitting directly behind Buddig Hall during construction of the latter in 1966.
The Fieldhouse was razed in 1987 to make room for the new combined recreational complex and Freret Street parking garage.
Found in the Archives is a recurring series of crazy cool stuff found in the Monroe Library’s Special Collections & Archives.