Designed by Harry Barton of Greensboro and built in 1922, the President's Residence (as it was then called) served as home to almost all the heads of the college and university from Foust through Sullivan. When the University began leasing a home to serve as the new Chancellor's residence in 1996, Chancellor Sullivan moved to the Sunset Drive house and left the old Chancellor's house without a resident or purpose for the first time in its existence.
|Chancellor's Residence, ca. 1960|
Very shortly after the decision to demolish the house was announced, a movement started by Carolyn Maness (Alumna-1946) and Jean Gordon (Professor of History-Emerita) sought to try to save the house from being destroyed. Gathering the forces of UNCG alumni, a letter-writing campaign ensued which helped to slow the demolition process. During this time also, help to save the house was recruited from Preservation North Carolina, a private non-profit statewide historic preservation organization. With their help, a compromise was reached to save the house. If the money could be raised to move and renovate the house, there was a possibility of saving it. The estimate to move and renovate was set just at 2 million dollars and those interested in saving the house had just under a year to raise that sum. Meanwhile, other interested groups, such as Preservation Greensboro, Inc. and current students of the University joined in the effort to raise the money. An "Afternoon on the Lawn" event was staged by UNCG student groups to encourage awareness and donations.
|House on the move, June 2003|
Over several weeks in May-June 2003, the house was lifted, moved, and re-set at its current location at 1400 Spring Garden St, just 900 feet from its original location. Renovations began immediately and continued through the end of 2004. The house was turned over to the University in January 2005 and The Jane Harris Armfield and Emily Harris Preyer Admissions and Visitors Center was officially dedicated in May 2005.
|Armfield-Preyer Center, June 2005 (photo-UNCG Image Collection)|