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Home Depot Volunteers Landscape Melrose Cottage

Lawrence Green

October 9, 2012

In spite of the cool, damp weather, a hard-working crew of volunteers from Home Depot dug into the flowerbeds surrounding Melrose Cottage (President's House) at Cheyney University on Tuesday and planted a colorful mix of perennial plants. Melrose Cottage is undergoing interior and exterior renovations. Plans call for Melros Cottage to be an alumni-centered space upon completion.

The Home Depot Team was led by Charlie Stanley, Assistant Manager of the King of Prussia store, who summed up the feelings of the volunter employees. "We had a great time beautifying Melrose Cottage. It isn't every day we get to work on a building listed on the National Historic Landmark Registry! We also learned a lot about the University because one of our employees, Isaac Patterson, is a recent graduate." 

Stanley and the team will be back in the Spring to complete the Retool Your School project.  "In the meantime," Charlie said, "we wish you all a great 175th anniversary homecoming weekend and hope that our grounds work on Melrose makes the alumni feel all the more welcomed." 

As a result of a successful online vote campaign, the University won the Tier 2 Home Depot $10,000 grant in the Spring of 2012. Cheyney University plans to enhance the campus by planting shrubbery and trees around residence halls and academic buildings.

Melrose Cottage is on the National Register of Historic Places. It was previously the home of Cheyney University's first president, Leslie Pinkney Hill, his wife Hermione, and 5 daughters. Hill was an educator, author, poet, dramatist, and community leader.  He graduated cum laude from Harvard University in 1907 and received his Master's degree from Harvard in 1904.  In 1913 he became the head of the Institute for Colored Youth in Cheyney, Pennsylvania. The school was renamed the Cheyney State Teachers College in 1951.