Turner House

This 6,361-square-foot house was built by Professor George Mellen in 1895 for his residence as part of the university’s agreement that faculty could build houses on campus, with the university subsequently purchasing them. (Three houses were built: one by President Dabney, one by Professor Charles Wait, and one by Professor Mellen.) Professor Mellen lived in the house for a short period of time and then moved and rented it to Professor C. W. Turner. The university purchased the house in 1900 for $3,683.39 (the house was valued at $4,433.49, and the university had made a previous payment) and continued to rent the structure to Professor C. W. Turner, who was dean of the Law College from 1915 to 1920 and who continued to teach in the Law College until his death in 1922 at age 78. Plans were for the rent from this house and from Barbara Blount Hall (1901) to be used as an endowment fund.

In April 1914 the house sustained damage from a serious fire. The student newspaper account described students’ removal of goods and furnishings prior to the fire department’s arrival and noted that “some especially valuable goods (in bottles) were rescued by Mr. John Ayres, and subsequently guarded, it is said, by Prof. Turner himself.”

After its use as a rental property, Turner House was variously used as a student infirmary, Athletics Department Office Building, residence hall and food services offices, and for other administrative purposes. It was the first location of the Hearing and Speech Center.

Turner House was razed in fall 1997 to allow construction of the Burchfiel Geography Building. At the time of its demolition, it was being used to house graduate students (approximately 30) in the College of Liberal Arts (now Arts and Sciences).

Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Title Turner House
  • Author
  • Keywords Turner House
  • Website Name Volopedia
  • Publisher University of Tennessee Libraries
  • URL
  • Access Date June 17, 2024
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update October 19, 2018