Historic Macon acquires home of local architect

Historic Macon has acquired the home of Macon architect Ellamae Ellis League.
Historic Macon restoration

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Historic Macon has acquired the home of Macon architect Ellamae Ellis League.

Her home will not only be something for people to enjoy, but it will also help Historic Macon’s mission.

Ellamae Ellis League decided to become an architect in the 1920s when that wasn’t something women often did.

Georgia Tech was where people went to study architecture, but it didn’t admit women until after World War II. She studied through apprenticeship from 1922 to 1929.

According to her granddaughter, Cheri Dennis, League is responsible for a lot of Macon’s architectural beauty.

“The parks downtown, the sanctuary at Mulberry Methodist Church, the schools that she built, Macon hospitals expansion, so many contributions,” she said.

League designed and built a split-level home on Waverland Drive in the early 1940s and lived in it until she died in 1991.

A man named Dennis McCleary bought the house with the intention of restoring it. Dennis hoped to buy the house one day if McCleary ever sold it.

“I heard the house was being restored, and Dennis had donated it,” she said. “I was over the moon. It was a dream come true.”

McClearly donated the house to Historic Macon. According to Executive Director Ethiel Garlington, the organization has big plans in mind.

“We will be restoring the Ellamae Ellis League home as closely as possible to her time when she lived here from 1941 to 1991,” he said.

According to Garlington, Historic Macon plans to turn the house into a short-term rental. The rental revenue will help maintain the house and the equity in the home will help fund preservation of other properties in the community.

“Thus creating a new revolving fund,” he said. “Can you imagine staying in this beautiful house? Immersing yourself in Ellamae’s world. It’s a retreat and unlike anything else anywhere.”

Dennis even wrote a book about her grandmother called “Dear Mr. Ellamae” about how she became a pioneer in architecture. She plans to donate the books proceeds to Historic Macon’s preservation project, which is something League was passionate about.

“She was always eager to preserve, find old buildings, and that was part of her legacy,” she said. “So this just joins Historic Macon in such a beautiful way.”

In so many ways, Ellamae’s legacy will live on.

Historic Macon will fund the restoration with a $75,000 grant from the 1772 Foundation.