Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts HistorySauer, Anne
Sawyer House, 1863
The Sawyer House was purchased from Somerville farmer Samuel Teele in 1863. It was named after Packard Professor of Theology and first dean of the Divinity School Thomas Jefferson Sawyer, and originally served as his house on campus. It currently serves as home to the Delta Upsilon fraternity.
When it was purchased, the Sawyer House was a flat roofed home located in the middle of the old campus, on the western end of Professors Row. In 1875, the house was moved to its current location when Professors Row was expanded to reach Curtis Street. In addition to being moved, the Sawyer House was also remodeled, receiving a pitched roof and an extra floor. Sawyer then took up residency with his family in the newly renovated house. In the 1890's, Professor George Knight married Sawyer's daughter, and moved into house. The building became home to both families, and the Knights would remain there until Professor Knight's death in 1911. In 1917, the Sawyer House became a dormitory for Jackson students, who lived there on a co-op plan. It remained a Jackson dormitory until 1938, when the Sawyer House was sold to the Delta Upsilon fraternity. Delta Upsilon extensively remodeled the house, building a large brick front and leaving only a small wooden section in the rear from the original building.
Between 1943 and 1947, the Sawyer House was used to house men from a local Navy unit, but was returned to Delta Upsilon in 1948. As of 2001, the Sawyer House continues to serve as home to the Delta Upsilon fraternity.
The encyclopedia seeks to capture more than 150 years of Tufts' achievements, societal contributions and outstanding alumni and faculty in concise entries. As a source of accurate factual information, the Encyclopedia can be used by anyone interested in the history of Tufts and of the people who have made it the unique institution it is.