The photograph shows the amorphous group of buildings that make up the Mechanical Hall complex. In the center is the Mechanical Hall proper.
In the background to the right, the smokestack belches black smoke into the air. On the right of the Mechanical Hall, three of the popular striped canopies serve to block out the sun. This photograph shows almost no vines clinging to the building that are present in other pictures of the day.
The original building for Mechanical Hall was built in 1892. It served as the "nucleus of the present group that continues to grow in every direction" (Lafferty, 193?). Soon after, an annex was added to Mechanical Hall. At the same time as the publication of the University Map of the Buildings and Grounds (1918), a new workshop was constructed for the Mechanical Department.