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Special Collections Online at UT

Hopecote Collection

Identifier: AR-0797

  • Staff Only

The first scrapbook details and documents the renovations made to the Hopecote house from 1978-1981 after being purchased from Emma Hope by the University of Tennessee. This includes renovations both inside the home and renovations which took place on the grounds of the property. The second scrapbook documents changes made to the Hopecote Gardens. There are photographs of various plants and events such as the wedding of the Chung family in August of 1982, snow in February of 1984, a tree trimming in March of 1984, the blooming of the garden in April of 1984, a wedding on July 28, 1984, and a wedding on October 12, 1985. The guestbook of Ruth Ann Bacon dated to December 5th, 1985, includes signatures from UT staff, and Bacon's personal friends. Photographs of the 1985 event are included and timestamped on the reverse. The first folder in the collection contains multiple undated pamphlets that include Christmas celebrations, a brief historical overview, and a general visitation guide which includes a map and operating hours. Additionally, the folder contains two undated photographs of the exterior of the home, as well as an announcement of Hopecote's status as an honorable guest home on campus. In the second folder there is a collection of letters primarily written or received by Ruth Bacon. The letters detail correspondences regarding Ruth Bacon's status as hostess and the management of the house. The third and final folder in the collection contains newspaper clippings that document the death of the home's former owner, Emma Hope, and her garden, the Hopecote home's furnishings, the death of the architect John Staub, and various events which took place within the Hopecote house.


  • 1978-1985

Conditions Governing Access

Manuscript and University Archives collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 24 hours is needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.


0.5 Linear Feet


The historic Hopecote house, built in 1924, was renovated by The University of Tennessee in 1976 as an honorable guest home. Hopecote was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 2012. This collection includes scrapbooks, a guest book, pamphlets, photographs, newspaper clippings, and letters.

Biographical/Historical Note

The historic Hopecote house, built in 1924 and regarded as an architectural timepiece, was renovated in 1976 after being purchased by The University of Tennessee from owner Emma Hope, who resided in the home until her death the following year. Hopecote was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 2012. Ruth Bacon resided in and took care of the Hopecote house before her death at age 99 in 2012. Hopecote opened as the University's official guest house in 1979 and was operated by the Department of Residence Halls. The first floor of Hopecote could also be reserved for small luncheons and gatherings. Hopecote still acts as a University guest house today.

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA