Western Illinois University (WIU) is a public university in Macomb, Illinois. It was founded in 1899 as Western Illinois State Normal School. As the normal school grew, it became Western Illinois State Teachers College. Western Illinois University was founded in 1899. The land for the university was donated to the state of Illinois by Macomb's Freemasons (Illinois Lodge #17). Macomb was in direct competition with Quincy, Illinois, and other candidates as the site for a "western" university. The Illinois legislature selected Macomb as the location. University administrators uncovered evidence of the Freemasons' efforts on Macomb's behalf when they opened Sherman Hall's (the administration building) cornerstone during their centennial celebrations. The university's name as changed twice since its foundation as the Western Illinois State Teachers College in 1899: the school was first renamed Western Illinois State Teachers College in 1921 and then to Western Illinois University in 1967. Sherman Hall served as the university's primary facility for many years, but as the university and its programs expanded, a need surfaced for further expansion. Today, the Macomb campus consists of 53 buildings over 1,050 acres (424.9 ha). Sherman Hall is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Western's presence in the Quad Cities spans more than 40 years. In Fall 1960, the university offered its first undergraduate course in the Quad Cities. In 2016 and 2017, WIU saw a major downsizing and exodus of faculty and staff as a consequence of massive state budget cuts and declining undergraduate enrollment.