North Carolina-UNC President’s Home-November 4

North Carolina People, Places, and Things-November 4

I am the dad to five adult children. As they were growing up I attempted to remind them they were special and to implore them to learn something new. My goal was to do that daily.

In 2016 my goal is to learn something new daily on the people, places, and things that make North Carolina special. Everyday this year I am doing a post on what I have learned new.

Last night I got to attend a reception at the President of the University of North Carolina residence.


Some historians refer to this house as the “Second President’s Home”. The house I was in last night was not the original President Residence. What I have been able to learn was the house was occupied by UNC’s first president, Joseph Caldwell, when he was elected president for the second time in 1816 until his death in 1835.  Caldwell, the university’s first president, moved there when he married a widow with three children. Needing more space, apparently, the president persuaded the university to sell him the property. Caldwell wrote to his brother in 1812, saying he had spent $2,000 on the new two-story house, which had a footprint measuring 40 feet by 24 feet. A total of 960 square feet. Caldwell was known to be an astronomy buff and had pillars on the property for the purposes of stargazing.


It was also the home of President David Swain from 1849 to 1868. The house was then occupied by several UNC faculty members, including Thomas Hume, who moved in on Christmas Eve 1886. That night, a devastating fire started in an adjacent outbuilding and quickly destroyed the president’s house.

President Swain, having been a former governor, was connected politically. That quality meant all kinds of people came to the home.  Three U.S. presidents visited the home – James Polk, James Buchanan and Andrew Johnson. Archaeologists found a 1907 university history by Kemp Battle that described a summer soiree honoring Buchanan in the front yard.

Photo of 15th President of the United States James Buchanan.


The current president’s residence was built in 1907 by Frank Millburn.  Today that home is occupied by UNC President Margaret Spellings. UNC Pembroke was proud to be her guest last night.

President Spellings and myself on a recent trip to UNC Pembroke.




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Simplify Tasks

Want to learn the simple way?

Craft Beer Spots

Where to find craft beer

Otonabee Longevity

A Lifestyle Information Website

Old time rock and roll

A blog about the history of Rock and Roll music

Cooking Without Limits

Food Photography & Recipes


Simple made easy! psychology love feeling emotion thought behaviour success strategy

roads bel travelled

Exploring open roads without breaking the bank


Motivating Children To Change

Order My Steps

Musings and reflections along the path

This Day in North Carolina History

The people and places of the Tar Heel state day by day.

The Omnivoyeur

Eating, Drinking, and Taking In All Of Life's Pleasures


People, Places, Bites & Buzz from the South and Beyond

John Tanner's Barbecue Blog

One man's search for a rich, full life -- mainly barbecue.

JoHanna Massey

"I tramp the perpetual journey."- Walt Whitman



%d bloggers like this: