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Halliehurst was built in 1890 by Senator Stephen B. Elkins, the co-founder of Elkins and Davis and Elkins College. The summer home is named after Stephen B. Elkins' wife, Hallie Davis Elkins, and was modeled after a German castle that she adored. Hallie Davis Elkins was the daughter of U.S. Senator from WV, Henry Gassaway Davis. Halliehurst was the first building the be established on the current campus of Davis and Elkins College, and has been home to a social center, a college administration building, and has housed the office of the president and other officials of the college. Halliehurst and her neighbor, Graceland, the summer home that belonged to Davis, would host elaborate social and political gatherings long before they belonged to Davis & Elkins College. Halliehurst was donated along with a matching gatehouse that now houses the Office of Communications & Marketing.

  • Halliehurst
  • Stephen B. Elkins
  • Halliehurst
  • The Gatehouse
  • WV Historical Marker (on Seneca Trail)
  • WV Historical Marker--opposite side

Stephen Benton Elkins was not a West Virginia native and it took him until his late 40s to move to Elkins, WV. Prior to his impact on West Virginia, Elkins went to law school in Missouri and practiced territorial politics in New Mexico. Elkins' marriage to Henry Gassaway Davis' daughter, Hallie brought him to West Virginia where he helped Davis with his coal, timber, and railroad pursuits. Elkins gained political recognition by working with James G. Blaine at the 1880 Republican National Convention. Elkins also helped Benjamin Harrison clasp the Republican nomination and presidency in 1888, and became his Secretary of War in 1891. In 1895, Elkins became a United States Senator from West Virginia, following the footsteps of his father-in-law Henry Gassaway Davis. Together they were some of the wealthiest entrepreneurs in the state of West Virginia as they dominated the coal, timber, and railroad industries. 

Stephen B. Elkins built Halliehurst as a summer home when his involvement in West Virginia politics and industries started to take off. Charles T. Mott, a New York architect designed Halliehurst to represent Elkins' wealth and modeled the home after a German castle that Elkins' wife admired. Once the home was finished in 1890 it became a destination for social and political gatherings, along with Graceland which sits adjacent to the Halliehurst property. Graceland was the summer home of Henry Gassaway Davis, and both homes are now attributes to the Davis & Elkins College campus. Elkins remained a Senator until his death at Halliehurst in 1911. Hallie Elkins gifted Halliehurst and the property, including the gatehouse, to Davis and Elkins College after her death in the 1920s. The college has made good use out of Halliehurst and has utilized it as housing, offices, and for administrative purposes since the 1920s. Today Halliehurst houses the office of the college's President and the first floor can be used for events. 

1. “National Register of Historic Places Nomination Form.” Accessed September 7, 2016. 2. “Historic District.” 2012. Accessed September 7, 2016. 3. “Share Halliehurst.” 2016. Accessed September 7, 2016. 4. “Share Stephen B. Elkins.” 2016. Accessed September 7, 2016.

Image Sources(Click to expand)

"Stephen Benton Elkins/Halliehurst." The Historical Marker Database. Accessed October 7, 2020.

"Stephen Benton Elkins/Halliehurst." The Historical Marker Database. Accessed October 7, 2020.