The Miles-Humes house was originally built circa 1814-1816 for Captain Joseph Miles, the co-founder of both Milesburg, Pennsylvania and the Centre Furnace Iron Works. He sold the house in 1830 to William Wilson Potter and his wife, Lucy, who continued to reside in the house after William's death in 1839. She lived in the house alone until she convinced her niece, Lucy Alexander, and nephew-in-law, Edward Humes, to move in with her. The House now serves the Centre County Library & Historical Museum.


  • Miles-Humes House/Potter Home circa 1890s
    Miles-Humes House/Potter Home circa 1890s
  • The Miles-Humes House today
    The Miles-Humes House today
  • Miles-Humes/Potter Home 1916. Decorated for its 100th anniversary
    Miles-Humes/Potter Home 1916. Decorated for its 100th anniversary

After Edward Humes' death in 1895, his children William Potter Humes and Ann Elmira Humes took up ownership of the house and decided to renovate it. The Humes siblings remodeled the house extensively, including moving the entire house several feet from the street. The house stayed in the Humes family until Ann's death in 1934, when she donated the house for use as a public library. The house officially opened as the Centre County Library in 1939. In 1977, the main library collection moved across the street. The house continues to serve as the administrative offices for the library, and more importantly as a specialize local history and genealogical reference library.

The Miles-Humes House is a 2 1/2-story, five bay rectangular limestone building in the Georgian style architecture. It has a low pitch, gable roof and three dormer windows. In 1896, the house was moved 12 feet from the street and elevated 4 feet off the ground in order to add on new porches to the front and side of the building. The north wing was also removed and replaced with a three-story addition to the back of house.

Montgomery, Dot. "Library will be a Stop on May 19 Homes Tour." Pennsylvania Mirror May 15, 1976. Kerstetter, Rich. "Miles-Humes Building received a Big Lift." Centre Daily Times February 14, 2003. Montgomery, Dorothy. "Library 'house'--160 years old." Pennsylvania Mirror March 28, 1975.