The John Sprunt Hill House was built in 1912 as the family home of the Sprunt/Hill family. A Boston firm called Kendall and Taylor, which also built Watts Hospital in Durham, designed the home in a modified Spanish-Colonial Revival style with a stucco exterior and unique red tile roof. All of the first floor woodwork and most of the furniture was designed and manufactured by another Boston firm, Irving Casson, the firm that also created woodwork for one of Durham’s most iconic wedding venues; Duke Chapel.
Hill House’s original property was a full city block and included a tennis court, putting green, pergola and a formal rose garden. Across the street to the south (now the site of Orchard Park, a gift of the Hill Family to the City of Durham) were a large vegetable garden, orchard, stables for horses and cows, and several greenhouses.
Today, the interior of Hill House looks very much like it did in the early 1900s, especially the first floor rooms, which include original furniture pieces and rugs. This is a dream for those seeking a vintage vibe!
The Annie Watts Hill Fund, established by John Sprunt in honor of his wife, ensures that Hill House continues to serve as a memorial to her and is available for use by women’s civic groups in Durham. Hill House has been home to the Junior League of Durham and Orange Counties since 1963.