BOYS HOUSE (Library)

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 10: BUILT ENVIRONMENT (Physical Plant)
Boy’s House (Library)

BOYS HOUSE (Library)

Boy’s House. Facade. Early view. Upper porch intact. [II_08_boys_house_323d.jpg]

TAGS: Boys House, Boy’s House, The Library, Mary Rockwell Hook, Ethel de Long Zande, construction, John Smith Duncan, dormitories, community centers, libraries, remodeling of Boys House, Appalachian Regional Commission, PMSS Collections, Archive Room

BOYS HOUSE (Library) 

Construction dates: 1919-1920
Architect: Mary Rockwell Hook, with input by the Zandes
Valuation: 1926 Building and Equipment: $12,159.64

Construction – 1919-1920

Boy’s House was constructed in 1919-1920. It was financed through a gift from John Smith Duncan of Chicago, the inventor of the Addressograph and a Pine Mountain School trustee(?). Called “Boys House” or “Boy’s House,” the building was constructed as a dormitory for boys during the early boarding school years.  When the boarding school closed in 1949, the building served the new Community School and later as a community center which housed a lending library — hence the second name “Library.”

In 1926 the valuation of the building was $12,159.64.

Mary Rockwell Hook the master architect of the School, designed the original building plans for the dormitory. However, Ethel de Long Zande felt that Hook’s plans called for too much depth which signaled too much cost. She and her husband, Luigi Zande, then laid off the building themselves on a narrower plan. At this point, it is unclear who had the final say. There is evidence in a letter from Mrs. Zande to Mrs. Hook that the final execution of the building plan may have been that of Mary Hook, for Mrs. Zande thanks Hook for some plans she had sent. It is possible that Hook designed the house according to the Zandes’ guidelines.

The physical structure of the building consisted of fifteen rooms: two student bathrooms, one workers’ bathroom, seven double rooms, and two four-bed rooms for students. There is evidence of four toilets, four wash sinks, three urinals, and four showers. “The living room is large and comfortably furnished, but rather dark,” noted one observer. This dark interior is commented on by several workers.

 Remodeling – 1940s

There is evidence of remodeling during the 1940s. The Pine Cone (October 1940) notes that a Boy’s House remodeling program got underway that year just after school closed for summer vacation.


“The purpose [of the remodel]  was to make the building more modern for pleasant living. The crowded sleeping porches have been replaced by rooms which accommodate two boys. The rooms are furnished with two beds, two lockers, one bureau with a mirror, a picture drawn by John A. Spelman III, and the things the boys own themselves. One new bathroom was installed while the other was remodeled, the latter getting only one new shower. The workers’ bathroom received one coat of paint. The most comfortable room is the living room which adjoins the housemother’s room. The three pine easy chairs near the fireplace were products of the woodwork shop. New floors have been put in and sealed. The boys are now enjoying a new and roomier Boys’ House along with more privacy and comfort.”

The balcony seen in the early photographs was removed at a later date, possibly in the early 1930s [?] and is most likely a remnant of the earlier sleeping porch, a feature in most all the early dormitories. The building was converted to a library, archives, and offices in 1959 and was re-named the “Library” at that time.

 Various Uses – 1949-present

Following the removal of the library collections from the Burkham Memorial School House after the closure of the Community School, Boy’s House began to be known as the “Library” and today the building is also recognized by that name. At that time it also became the site of the Pine Mountain Room, a designated location for the collections of archival material about the School.

Further, the building has been used variously as an exhibit and program area and offices for the Environmental Education program, the Community Outreach Coordinator programs, and the Grow Appalachia program. Other programs and staff have also been housed in or have used the building for group assembly. Recently, Pine Mountain School’s rich archival collections were returned to the building from the Office, where they had been housed.

 Remodeling – 2016-present

By 2016 plans were underway for a major remodel of the facility through funding from the ARC (Appalachian Regional Commission). The remodel will allow for additional multi-purposing of the building space for archives, exhibits, and Environmental Education programming as well as to house the growing Gift Shop.

In March of 2017 the Gift Shop, originally housed in Old Log, was moved to the main Living Room area of the house and into the old Pine Mountain archive room. The Native American collections, part of the Environmental Education program were moved to the conference room or old gymnasium area. As the renovation of the space in the building continues, the various rooms will most likely be shifted further.

The collections moved [2016] from the Office are now located in the Library reading room and plans are underway for a remodel of the area to house the remaining archival materials now held in West Wind. The move will provide greater access to the historical materials for scholars and the community and for the first time in over fifty years bring the entire archival collections together in one location.

The Library conference room, formerly a gymnasium and later a weaving room, has been converted to a large meeting room as well as housing the Native American collections used in EE instruction. The original library book collections stored in the gymnasium area have been thinned and removed to the Library shelving area.

Collections that focus on the EE botanical program (E. J. Carr Plant Center Book Collection) have been moved to the Boy’s House/Library where there is more bibliographic control of the material. Some West Wind holdings, such as financial records will remain at West Wind for the present time, and only materials critical for researchers are being moved to the new archival space in Boy’s House. Specifically, this will include the processed materials of the Berea microfilm project.

GALLERY I: Boy’s House

GALLERY II: Boy’s House (Library)
LIBRARY INTERIOR (under construction)

Return To:

See Also:


Boy’s House (Library)

Alt. Title

Boys’ House ; The Library ;




Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY

Alt. Creator

Mary Rockwell Hook, Architect

Subject Keyword

Boy’s House ; Pine Mountain Settlement School ; Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ; gifts ; J.S. Duncan ; Chicago, IL ; addressograph ; trustees ; Mary Rockwell Hook ; Ethel de Long Zande ; Luigi Zande ; physical structure ; balconies ; sleeping porches ; Library ; archives ; offices ; staff housing ; community outreach ; Environmental Education ; gymnasiums ; weaving rooms ; meeting rooms ; sheds ; facades ; living rooms ; stone steps ; playgrounds ; archival collections ;

Subject LCSH

Boy’s House.
Architecture — Pine Mountain Settlement School.
Pine Mountain Settlement School (Pine Mountain, Ky.) — History.
Harlan County (Ky.) — History.
Historic Buildings — Kentucky — Appalachia.
Rural schools — Kentucky — History.
Schools — Appalachian Region, Southern.

Date Digital

2001-05-27 ; 2013-09-09 ;


Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY


J.S. Duncan, Chicago, IL


Collections ; text ; image ;


Original and copies of images, documents, and correspondence in file folders in filing cabinet


Series 10: Built Environment (Physical Plant)




Is related to: Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections, Series 10: Built Environment (Physical Plant) ; Kentucky Virtual Library collections <> [searchable]
Berea College Southern Appalachian Archives <>
Transylvania College Archives <>
Univ. of KY Appalachian Archives <>
National Historic Landmarks Database <>

Coverage Temporal

1919 – present

Coverage Spatial

Pine Mountain, KY ; Harlan County, KY ;


Any display, publication, or public use must credit the Pine Mountain Settlement School. Copyright retained by the creators of certain items in the collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.




Core documents, correspondence, writings, and administrative papers about Boy’s House ; clippings, photographs, books about Boy’s House ;


Constructed 1919 – 1920


“[Identification of Item],” [Collection Name] [Series Number, if applicable]. Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY.

Processed By

Helen Hayes Wykle ; Ann Angel Eberhardt ;

Last Updated

2002-07-01 hhw ; 2004-11-30 hhw ; 2013-09-09 hhw ; 2013-09-21 hhw ; 2014-05-12 aae ; 2016-03-09 aae ; 2016-07-29 aae ; 2022-12-14 aae ;



“West Wind.” Series 10: Built Environment (Physical Plant). Pine Mountain Settlement School Institutional Papers. Pine Mountain Settlement School, Pine Mountain, KY. Archival material.