DUKE-WANNAMAKER HOUSE / RHINE INSTITUTE / DUKE CATHOLIC CENTER

DUKE-WANNAMAKER HOUSE / RHINE INSTITUTE / DUKE CATHOLIC CENTER

402
,
Durham
NC
Cross street: 
Built in
1900-1919
/ Modified in
1965
,
2002
Architectural style: 
Construction type: 
National Register: 
Neighborhood: 
Type: 

Comments

  • Submitted by Lynn on Wednesday, July 28, 2010 - 1:20pm

    In the 1980 photo, isn't the house already covered in (possibly aluminum) siding? The soffits and shutters look a little weird.

    The apparition floating in front of the second story window over the front door is a nice touch!

    I have vague recollections of "Duke people" coming to the elementary school (somewhere in the '62-'65 range) and administering tests that, in retrospect, were probably part of this group. In particular, I remember them putting colored circles of construction paper in a closed box, and we put our hands into holes in the side of the box to see if anyone could pick out particular colors without seeing them. They were trying to find people who could discern different colors by feel. I don't recall any budding Uri Gellers being discovered. One thing about growing up in a college town -- it was rarely dull.

  • Submitted by Kevin Hartzog on Wednesday, July 28, 2010 - 6:03pm

    Vinyl siding is bad enough already without putting it on the frieze on the porch roof entablature. I would have rather seen the porch restored with smooth face Miratec or Hardi panels with solid PVC trim. The vinyl siding guy could have at least put brake metal there instead of siding.

  • Submitted by Marsosudiro on Thursday, July 29, 2010 - 4:25am

    "psychics" looks like a typo, even though it isn't.

    I once went to a black-tie fundraiser for the Rhine Center, at the Hope Valley Country Club. (I was recipient of a free ticket.) It was interesting. I kept thinking about the scene in Ghostbusters where Bill Murray is cheating on the Zener card test with an attractive young subject.

  • Submitted by Marsosudiro on Thursday, July 29, 2010 - 4:26am

    "psychics" looks like a typo, even though it isn't.

    I once went to a black-tie fundraiser for the Rhine Center, at the Hope Valley Country Club. (I was recipient of a free ticket.) It was interesting. I kept thinking about the scene in Ghostbusters where Bill Murray is cheating on the Zener card test with an attractive young subject.

  • Submitted by John Martin on Thursday, July 29, 2010 - 1:43pm

    With regard to Kevin's comment, it also appears that the capitals were removed from the columns when the house was vinylized

  • Submitted by Anonymous on Tuesday, August 3, 2010 - 11:54am

    If you, for whatever reason, are motivated to replace your windows, please consider the style of the original ones. Of course, please consider using wood as the material, but for God's sake, don't put stark 1 over 1 windows in a house that never had them, particularly a large house. The vinyl siding on this house is bad enough but the 1 over 1 windows add to the "now devoid of character" appearance of this house considerably.

    Myers Sugg

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Last updated

  • Thu, 08/18/2011 - 11:55pm by gary

Comments

402
,
Durham
NC
Cross street: 
Built in
1900-1919
/ Modified in
1965
,
2002
Architectural style: 
Construction type: 
National Register: 
Neighborhood: 
Type: 

 

Duke-Wannamaker House, 1980.

A house with a rather unique history sits at 402 N. Buchanan Blvd. Per the historic inventory, BN Duke had this house built for the use of Trinity College at some point prior to 1920. It was used as a boarding house for professors and, during the Women's College years, a women's dormitory before being purchased by WH Wannamaker.

The house seems to appear in the city directories in 1919, occupied by WH Wannamaker. It seems likely that Wannamaker either built or occupied the house when his house on Faculty Row (which he was living in as of 1915) was moved to W. Trinity Ave. in 1916. Wannamaker was a professor of German, Dean of Trinity College, and a Vice Chancellor of Duke. He also was editor of the South Atlantic Quarterly.

Wannamaker appears to have been no longer living in the house by 1934, at which point it was occupied by Rev. George Matthis. By 1940, it was occupied by Albert Kenyon. By 1944, Rev. Dwight M. Chalmers. By 1950, the house had been converted into apartments.

It remained apartments until 1965, when it was donated by "Mrs. Avery" per the historic inventory to the no-longer-so-welcome-on-campus Rhine Institute - i.e. the Foundation for Research on the Nature of Man, i.e. the former Duke Parapsychology Laboratory, which had been housed in the West Duke Building on East Campus since 1927, when it was founded by William McDougall and Joseph Rhine. The FRNM was housed at 402 N. Buchanan from 1965-2002, where its denizens studied psychics using:

  "modern techniques that allow more subtle measurements of psi, such as by looking at the physiological changes or bioenergy characteristics of psychics and healers, or by measuring the telepathic awareness of emotional targets in a simulated dream-like situation. Efforts are made to detect clues that come directly from the psi experiencers themselves, whether they are healers, intuitives, or simply ordinary people who have these extraordinary experiences."

In 2002, the FRNM moved to a new building on Campus Walk Avenue. With the institute so exorcised (you have no idea how long I've been waiting to use this line) the building was claimed by the Duke Catholic Center, who renovated the house with an abundance of vinyl siding and windows; they continue to occupy the house today.

402 N. Buchanan, 03.13.10 Find this spot on a Google Map. 36.005768,-78.912131

Comments

In the 1980 photo, isn't the house already covered in (possibly aluminum) siding? The soffits and shutters look a little weird.

The apparition floating in front of the second story window over the front door is a nice touch!

I have vague recollections of "Duke people" coming to the elementary school (somewhere in the '62-'65 range) and administering tests that, in retrospect, were probably part of this group. In particular, I remember them putting colored circles of construction paper in a closed box, and we put our hands into holes in the side of the box to see if anyone could pick out particular colors without seeing them. They were trying to find people who could discern different colors by feel. I don't recall any budding Uri Gellers being discovered. One thing about growing up in a college town -- it was rarely dull.

Vinyl siding is bad enough already without putting it on the frieze on the porch roof entablature. I would have rather seen the porch restored with smooth face Miratec or Hardi panels with solid PVC trim. The vinyl siding guy could have at least put brake metal there instead of siding.

"psychics" looks like a typo, even though it isn't.

I once went to a black-tie fundraiser for the Rhine Center, at the Hope Valley Country Club. (I was recipient of a free ticket.) It was interesting. I kept thinking about the scene in Ghostbusters where Bill Murray is cheating on the Zener card test with an attractive young subject.

"psychics" looks like a typo, even though it isn't.

I once went to a black-tie fundraiser for the Rhine Center, at the Hope Valley Country Club. (I was recipient of a free ticket.) It was interesting. I kept thinking about the scene in Ghostbusters where Bill Murray is cheating on the Zener card test with an attractive young subject.

With regard to Kevin's comment, it also appears that the capitals were removed from the columns when the house was vinylized

If you, for whatever reason, are motivated to replace your windows, please consider the style of the original ones. Of course, please consider using wood as the material, but for God's sake, don't put stark 1 over 1 windows in a house that never had them, particularly a large house. The vinyl siding on this house is bad enough but the 1 over 1 windows add to the "now devoid of character" appearance of this house considerably.

Myers Sugg

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