The construction of Douglas Hall began in early 1951 and the hall opened for students on September 8, 1952. Douglas Hall was the first residence hall at Eastern Illinois University to house men, as the student population grew and the need to provide housing for all students arose. The original occupancy for Douglas was 194 beds.
Much like Lincoln Hall, Douglas had amenities including a separate dining room, recreational rooms, kitchenettes, common floor lounges, and laundry facilities. In order to live in Douglas, students were required to meet with the Dean of Men and put down a $10.00 deposit.
In its first year, and each year since, Douglas has housed men interested in athletics. In 1952-53 Douglas had three intramural sports teams including football, tennis and basketball. The residents of Douglas also enjoyed spending time with the ladies of Lincoln and joined them for events such as building the Homecoming floats, making house decorations, Wednesday visitation nights, and a Christmas social.
In the summer of 2009, the traditional community bathrooms were replaced with semi-private “pod” style bathrooms. The bathroom style lets students enjoy a semi-private restroom and shower facility with a community sink area. The cost of this project was approximately $3.5 million.