The years 1914 to 1921 may be named "The President Rufus Bernhard von KleinSmid Years." In seven years he changed the small school to a real university. His educational improvements were considerable. He is aptly described as energetic, enthusiastic and extremely well liked. He left to become the President of the University of Southern California from 1922 to 1946, remaining there as chancellor until he died in 1964 at the age of 89.
An account of his administration at the University of Arizona could fill a history book, but this is not a geography book. He did inadvertently save land owned by Louise Marshall for the present location of the Arizona Historical Society and Valley National Bank. This land from First Street to one-half block south of Second was known as the Nelson block. The University planned to expand in this direction, but it did not.
In another connection, Louise Marshall and Elizabeth Sawyers von KleinSmid are listed first and second among a dozen founders of Arizona Alpha of Pi Beta Phi in the Desert, the UA yearbook, in both 1918 and 1919 editions as "Sorores in Urbe" or town members. Collegiate members are "Sorores in Universitate." By 1920 only collegiate members are listed.
In 1916 the attractive volcanic stone wall was built along Park Avenue. It was paid for by subscription at $1.25 a foot. The double drive with double entrance gates were there only a short time. By 1922 the gate was changed to the present location.
The campus changed very little from 1919 to 1935. Major structures built were Maricopa Hall, Steward Observatory and Cochise Hall in 1921, the Library (now Arizona State Museum, North) in 1925, Men's Gymnasiun and Armory in 1927, baseball stadium and first part (lower, west side) of the present football of stadium in 1929.
The words "Bear Down" were painted on the newly completed gymnasium roof. During the time it was being built "Button" Salmon, student body president and football team member, was injured in an automobile accident. Just before he died "Button" gave Athletic Director J. F. McKale a message for the team; legend has it he told Coach McKale, "Tell them to bear down."