The Current President’s House—East Cottage
The house at 273 Dill Avenue was constructed in 1900. Hood College originally purchased the house in 1920 for use as a residence for the vice president, Charles E. Wehler, and the house was called East Cottage. In the summer of 1921, Wehler relocated from East Cottage to a newly constructed home—Westview Terrace—directly behind the property, now the Onica Prall Child Development Lab School, and East Cottage became the College infirmary. Use of East Cottage was discontinued during the 1924-25 school year, and after that school year, the College sold the property to William T. and Janie H. Delaplaine, a 1908 alumna. In 1979, Janie Delaplaine sold the property to her adopted daughter, Natalie Colbert Bowers ’52. In 2014, Hood College purchased the property for the College’s presidents. The house was again named East Cottage in 2015.
The Second President’s House
The second President’s House, which sits just north of Alumnae House, was built in 1961 and was home to five Hood College Presidents. It was renovated in 1995 before Hood’s eighth president, Shirley D. Peterson, and her husband, Donald M. Peterson, moved into the house June 30, 1995.
During its renovation, the first and second floors of the house were remodeled, with several interior walls moved to provide a more open and formal atmosphere for entertaining. The entrance hall was made wider, with a gracious, formal dining room to the left, complete with several of the silver tea services belonging to the College. The renovated kitchen, designed to be functional for preparing and serving food to large groups, opened into a spacious family room. The renovations also included painting throughout the house, a forced hot air and air conditioning system and wood floors in the entrance hall, dining room and living room. With the addition of a ramp and new restroom on the first floor, the President’s House became accessible to people with physical disabilities.
The presidents who lived in this house were: Randle Elliott (1961-71), who moved in when house was completed in late 1961 or early 1962; Ross Pritchard (1972-75); Martha Church (1975-95); Shirley Peterson (1995-2000); Robert Funk (2000-01); and Ronald J. Volpe (2001-15).
The First President’s House
The first President’s House (now Alumnae House) was built in 1920 as a home for Joseph Henry Apple and his family. Other presidents who resided in the first house were: Henry I. Stahr (1934-48) and Andrew G. Truxal (1948-61).