Colmore House

Dublin Core


Colmore House


This house was constructed by Mr. C.W. Scofield in 1887, the same year he built the Truslow-Elliott house. The first residents, Mrs. Frances Sylva D’Arusmont Guthrie and her two sons, Kenneth and William Norman, lived in the house for one year. Mrs. Guthrie was the daughter of the famous feminist abolitionist Fannie Wright. The Guthries had lived abroad in Scotland until they came to Sewanee. Both sons, educated in Germany and France, became clergymen; in fact William Norman was a well-known rector of St. Mark's-in-the-Bowery in New York.

The next residents were Mrs. Elliott, her three daughters and two sons. Mrs. Elliott was the widow of Bishop Robert Elliott, the first bishop of West Texas. She and the children came to live in Sewanee and bought this house in 1888. Their house was a center of social life and activity until Mrs. Elliott’s death in 1894.

Lionel Colmore, an Englishman, was Commissary of the University when he bought this house in 1905. Although he and his family arrived in the area in 1895, they lived in other houses while his three sons went to Sewanee. Colmore was very popular with the students, who called him “General.” When he died in 1922, he left the house to his daughter Dora; both she and her sister Eva lived there. Dora, a well-known cook, built a flourishing catering business during the Guerry regime. Eva died in 1948 and Dora, an invalid for several years, died in 1963. The house was a summer rental for several years and was then purchased by Mrs. Jean Tallec in 1966. Mrs. Tallec, her daughter, Christi Ormsby, and the two Ormsby boys lived there until the home burned down on Dec. 16, 1971.

A modern home has since been built on the site by the Rev. Herbert Wentz.


Kenneth Gutherie




All photographs are the property of the University of the South Archives and Special Collections Department




Still Image


Colmore House002

Alternative Title

Guthrie House

Bibliographic Citation

Gailor, C. (1970). Old Sewanee Houses; The First Fifty-Years, 1860-1910. Unpublished manuscript, the University of the South, Sewanee.






Kenneth Gutherie, “Colmore House,” Online Exhibitions and Digital History, accessed October 19, 2020,

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