History of 19 East Main Street

The property was once owned by Judge Laban Wheaton, founder of Wheaton Female Seminary in 1834 in memory of his daughter Eliza Wheaton Strong. Upon the judge’s death, the property was bequeathed to his son, Laban Morey Wheaton in 1846. An original dwelling on the property, built sometime prior to 1855, burned in 1877.

Laban Morey Wheaton was the Norton Postmaster and twice a member of the Governor’s Council. He represented the town in the legislature. He married but had no children. Next door to Laban Morey Wheaton’s home was a country store and post office, owned by the Rogerson family and frequented by students at the seminary.

At some time Davis Gregory came into possession of the home at 19 East Main, which he sold to Wheaton College in 1911. The house was purchased for a professor and his family and was referred to by the last name of the currently residing faculty member (e.g., Rogerson, Miller, Gregory, Hubbard, Pearce, etc.).

In the 1970’s the house was used as a residence for male students attending Wheaton via exchange programs. In 1986 it became known as the Multicultural Center, evolving from a multipurpose space reserved by students for special events and programs to a fully-staffed center of the college beginning in 2001.

On April 15, 2005 the house was dedicated to Dale Rogers Marshall, President of Wheaton College, to commemorate her dedication to diversity at Wheaton. The house is now known as the Marshall Center for Intercultural Learning.

Information compiled from Wheaton College Archives and the Norton Historical Society.