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American Architects Directories:
Biographical listing in 1956 American Architects Directory
Biographical listing in 1962 American Architects Directory
Biographical Directories:
Biographical entry in A Guide to Historic Architecture in Fresno, California
Biographical Information:
Contributed by the Environmental Design Archives, University of California, Berkeley:
William Hays was born in Philadelphia in 1873 to parents Charles Henry and Helen Reeder Hays. He received his bachelor's degree in architecture in 1893 from the University of Pennsylvania. Upon graduation, Hays won a travelling fellowship that allowed him to complete his studies at the American Academy in Rome and in Paris. He also traveled around Europe and in Egypt during that time. In 1921 Hays married Elah Hale of Berkeley and the two had a son, Charles Harrison, and a daughter, Dale.
Hays' professional career started in Philadelphia, where he began practice in 1894. He moved to San Francisco in 1904, and was a member of the firm Howard & Galloway from 1906 to 1908. He began his own practice in 1908. In addition to his design work, Hays had a distinguished career as a professor of architecture at UC Berkeley. He taught from 1906 to 1943, and was the acting director of the school from 1917 to 1919. Among his many roles in the development of the UC campuses, Hays was the supervising architect for the UC Davis campus from 1918 to 1944, and chairman of Building Location and Campus Development for the UC Berkeley campus in the 1940s. He designed buildings for UC San Francisco, UC Davis, and UC Berkeley, including Giannini Hall and fraternity houses.
Hays was a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and a charter member of the Beaux Arts Institute. He authored various articles on architectural topics for the Architect and Engineer and other journals. Hays lived in Berkeley until his death in 1963 at the age of 89.


The American Institute of Architects Archives
      Membership file may contain membership application, Fellowship nomination, related correspondence. Contact the AIA Archives at for further information.
Environmental Design Archives, University of California, Berkeley
Collection Number: 1977-1. Extent: 9 boxes, 1 card file box, 3 flat file drawers, framed drawings. The William C. Hays collection spans the years 1894-1962, documenting his career as a practicing architect and educator. Textual records include correspondence, handwritten notes, specifications, lecture notes, exams and quizzes, articles and reports. The records also contain architectural drawings, framed illustrations, photographs, slides, and some students' work. The collection is organized into five series: Personal Papers, Professional Papers, Faculty Papers, Project Records, and University of California.
      A large portion of Hays' records concern housing and dormitory planning for several University of California campuses, including Berkeley, Davis, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, and Santa Cruz. Hays participated in many aspects of the creation of new dormitories, including finding locations and designing the buildings. Other documents include notes about the historical plan for the UC Berkeley campus and correspondence regarding the future plan for the campus. Much of the collection is comprised of photostat reproductions of original correspondence and clippings.
Link to online finding aid: