The Plummer Building is named for scientist, physician, and engineer, Dr. Henry S. Plummer, whose tenure spanned Mayo's formative years from 1900 until his death in 1936. His genius and energy were essential to Mayo's early success and development.
Excavation for construction of the building that bears his name began in August 1926. Dr. Plummer played a key role in the architectural design of the building, which reflected the need for medical specialists to be able to work both independently and as a team. His designs and systems made the model of group medical practice possible.
Dr. Plummer's compassionate spirit also is reflected in the interior design of the building. Carvings, hardwood panels, rich shades of marble, custom carpeting and beautiful moldings adorn the building. Its exterior is sprinkled with mythological and allegorical themes of a different origin. The Bedford stone (Indiana limestone) that covers the outside of the building's two lower floors contains a series of carvings that focus on subjects relating to medicine, America, Minnesota, and Rochester. Of particular interest are carvings that reflect the time and locale of the building.
Raymond Corwin of Ellerbe & Co., the architects for the building, designed its bronze entry doors, which feature panel designs from medicine and mythology.
At a dedication ceremony, Dr. Charlie noted: "This building stands as a monument to the ability and genius of Dr. Henry S. Plummer, who has had full supervision of its design and erection, and he above all deserves credit for the detail and arrangement of the interior construction and arrangement of all the scientific and mechanical appliances which make accurate diagnosis not only possible but probable."