Stephens College President’s Home makes the news

Stephens College has five buildings on the Columbia Historic Preservation Commission’s Notable Properties Lists, however one was destroyed by fire after it was named to the list.

A building that is not on the Notable Properties list recently made the news: the President’s House. Built in 1926 by then-Stephens President James Madison Wood, the house was home to a long line of college presidents until the previous president, Wendy B. Libby took over in 2003. The house has been vacant since then, but current Stephens College President Dianne Lynch has announced plans to renovate the house funded through a $400,000, “Home Again” campaign. According to reports, as of Feb. 5, $220,000 has already been raised for the project.

The home, located on Locust Street, between Waugh Street and College Avenue, is an opportunity to ponder history. When it was first built, it had a “sleeping porch,” a place where people would sleep during the heat of the summer. The sleeping porch has since been enclosed, but it gives us an opportunity to appreciate the boon of Missouri summers – air conditioning.

Here are links to media coverage of the plans for the home and virtual tours of the house:

First, see inside the house via this virtual tour.

Feb. 5, 2011, Stephens College aims to restore President’s Home, Columbia Daily Tribune. This article includes photographs and outlines the history of the home and the fund-raising campaign.

Feb. 7, 2011, President’s house, Columbia Daily Tribune. This is an editorial by Hank J. Waters III supporting the campaign to renovate the house, support which makes sense given his is a member of the campaign’s board.

Here is a link to a historic article published shortly after the home was completed.

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