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Benjamin H Hill Home - Athens, GA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member ChapterhouseInc
N 33° 57.663 W 083° 23.206
17S E 279462 N 3760404
Quick Description: This historic home has been the long time residence of the President of the University of Georgia.
Location: Georgia, United States
Date Posted: 9/7/2009 5:22:29 PM
Waymark Code: WM7661
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member Hikenutty
Views: 0

Long Description:

"The Benjamin H Hill home (private), 570 Prince Ave, is a white clapboard house of Greek Revival design with a massive Corinthian portico extending along the front and sides of the structure and a characteristic balcony above the entrance. The front garden, with its oaks, cedars, magnolias, crpe myrtles, and formal planting of boxwood, follows the oldfashioned southern plan. In the rear a Doric colonade overlooks a modern, landscaped garden. Built by John Thomas Grant in 1855, this house did not come into Hill's possession until 1869. Benjamin hill (see tour 3) was a prominent Georgia statesman despite a temporary unpopularity caused by his freely avowed change of conviction on the secession question."

--Georgia: A Guide to its Cities and Countryside, 1940

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This home has been the residence for the University's President for decades. There are many large functions held here sevral times a year.

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The University of Georgia President's House, also known as the Benjamin H. Hill House or the Grant-Hill-White-Bradshaw House, is located at 570 Prince Avenue (Tax Parcel No. 17-1-A1-D-003).

This two-story frame building displays a raised basement and a four-over-four room, central hall plan. Architecturally representative of the Greek Revival style, the house features a three-sided peristyle with fourteen columns supported by brick pillars; eight columns accent the facade and an additional three extend back along either side of the building. The heroic porch is one of the few surviving examples that possess an entablature wholly below the roof line and above the windows. In the manner typical of Georgia's piedmont region, there is no pediment. The entrance displays sidelights and a transom of etched glass, square antae and consoles, Corinthian pilasters, and Doric entablature. A balcony with turned balusters ornaments a less elaborate second-floor doorway. A double staircase has replaced the original straight flight of steps, and in the rear, wings flank a two-story Doric porch, originally a simple one-story porch.

The opulent interior flaunts an octagonal newel port and balusters, two French thumbprint crystal chandeliers with ceiling medallions, and period furnishings. A Greek Revival influenced, plantation type cottage, which occupies the rear of the lot, may have been originally sited in the current location of the main house. A boxwood parterre garden with brick walks is an appropriate successor to the original English boxwood garden with sand walks in the front yard.

John Thomas Grant of Virginia constructed this house in 1856. Benjamin Harvey Hill, who served in both the House and Senate in Washington, acquired the house in 1876 and added the intricate fruit-and-floral friezes and marble mantels. Hill was credited with persuading President Hayes to withdraw Federal occupation troops in 1877, thus ending military rule in Georgia and the Reconstruction Era. James White, Founder of the First National Bank of Athens, purchased the property in July 1883. His daughter, Mrs. W. F. Bradshaw, inherited the house the same year, and the Bradley Foundation of Columbus, Georgia, acquired the property from her estate and in 1949 presented it to the University of Georgia as a home for its president. Subsequent to its acquisition, the University restored the house and grounds; Cooper, Bond, and Cooper were the architects in charge of remodeling, and Hubert B. Owens, A.S.L.A., designed the rear gardens. The front yard was refurbished in 1965.

The University of Georgia President's House was documented by the Historic American Building Survey (GA-1-20) and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (March 16, 1972). http://www.cviog.uga.edu/Projects/athens/UGAPRES.htm">link

Book: Georgia

Page Number(s) of Excerpt: 157

Year Originally Published: 1940

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