Save BYU's Amanda Knight Hall

Amanda Knight Hall Petition


TO: BYU Administration

FROM: Provo Joaquin Neighborhood Chair and Vice-Chairs, Utah Cultural Alliance, Preservation Utah, and the Following Signers

We are members of Utah-focused cultural organizations, Provo residents, BYU friends and alumni, and concerned citizens. 

This summer, Brigham Young University announced the demolition of the Tudor-Revival Amanda Knight Hall (built 1939), located in Provo’s historic Joaquin Neighborhood. The University plans to replace the original Amanda Knight Hall with a “replica” of the building located on the same site. 

We ask that BYU reverse its decision to demolish Amanda Knight Hall, and instead either renovate the building for university use OR sell the building to a preservation-minded investor.


Jessie and Amanda Knight were patrons of BYU who, in the early twentieth-century, repeatedly saved Brigham Young Academy, and subsequently Brigham Young University, from bankruptcy. Using funds donated to BYU by Jessie and Amanda Knight in their wills, the university built Amanda Knight Hall to serve as a woman’s dormitory and as a memorial to Amanda Knight. After serving for decades as a dormitory, Amanda Knight Hall was repurposed in 1964 to be a training center for foreign-bound LDS missionaries. The programs developed in Amanda Knight Hall gave birth to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints worldwide Missionary Training Center program, and were, in part, responsible for the meteoric growth of the LDS Church during the latter half of the twentieth century. 

Since its construction, Amanda Knight Hall has been an important BYU and Provo City landmark. In 1996, members of the Provo Landmarks Commission notified BYU that they had placed the building on the Provo Landmarks Register, effectively saving the building from demolition. While BYU did not contest Amanda Knight Hall’s listing in 1996, in 2002 BYU petitioned Provo City Council to remove the building from the registry so they could tear it down. Acting contrary to the recommendation of the Landmarks Commission, the City Council voted to delist the building. The uproar this action caused lead BYU to back down from its plans to demolish Amanda Knight Hall. 

In June of 2018, BYU stated that they had renewed their plans to demolish Amanda Knight Hall. By taking this action, BYU not only demolishes a key part of its own history, but also a significant piece of Provo City and larger Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints histories. This historic building will soon disappear unless BYU can be persuaded to renovate the building for its own uses OR sell the building to a preservation-minded investor. 

Please sign this petition directed at BYU Administration in support of preserving Amanda Knight Hall. Your efforts on behalf of this preservation effort are greatly appreciated.  

*Visit the “Save Amanda Knight Hall at BYU” Facebook page for additional information.

Who's signing

Lindsay Belvedere
Holly Grierson
Abbi Gadd
Kelley Sykes
Shannon Rama
Sam Thompson
Maren Young
Tess Kelly
Kirsten Rond
367 signatures

Will you sign?

Showing 290 reactions

  • Andrea Jensen
    signed 2018-11-07 12:40:27 -0700
    As a BYU alumni (‘90) from the Interior Design program, I am puzzled by BYU’s disinterest in design and architecture. The Design program is long gone, and my husband (‘89) alumni, had to go to the U of U for his master’s degree in the Graduate Architecture and Historic Preservation program. Why does BYU tear down and throw away architectural history, but value family history? Many times, I have showed my children the house where I grew up, church where I was baptized, schools I attended, first apartment as a married couple,etc. Tearing down history and replacing it with something shiny and new doesn’t make it better. Once a historic building is destroyed, you can never get that back (and please tell me they aren’t going to tear it and “build a replica”.) To tear down a historic building and rebuild it is a waste of resources by throwing away brick, door frames, windows, antique tiles, etc. It just doesn’t make sense to me. History cannot be replicated with a shiny new building. Architectural history should be as important as family history.
  • Lindsay Belvedere
    signed 2018-11-07 12:36:33 -0700
  • Holly Grierson
    signed 2018-11-07 12:28:03 -0700
  • Abbi Gadd
    signed 2018-11-07 12:20:59 -0700
  • Kelley Sykes
    signed 2018-11-07 12:13:30 -0700
  • Debra Yates
    signed 2018-11-07 11:26:19 -0700
  • Shannon Rama
    signed 2018-11-07 11:03:28 -0700
    this is a beautiful, historical building that I recall so fondly from my days at BYU in the late ’60’s. Please preserve it
  • David Keller
    signed 2018-11-07 10:53:33 -0700
  • Sam Thompson
    signed 2018-11-07 10:50:45 -0700
  • David Barket
    signed 2018-11-07 10:47:32 -0700
  • Maren Young
    signed 2018-11-07 10:42:50 -0700
  • Brent Troutner
    signed 2018-11-07 10:31:51 -0700
  • Scott Christopherson
    signed 2018-11-07 10:27:18 -0700
  • Douglas Thomas
    signed 2018-11-07 10:15:29 -0700
  • Dave Lewis
    signed 2018-11-07 10:10:13 -0700
  • Tess Kelly
    signed 2018-11-07 10:07:37 -0700
  • David Amott
    signed 2018-11-07 09:49:55 -0700
    Save this important building!
  • Pat Holmes
    signed 2018-11-02 10:06:29 -0600
  • Kirsten Rond
    signed 2018-11-02 08:44:51 -0600
  • Crystal Young-Otterstrom
    signed 2018-11-02 08:00:24 -0600