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About this collection

 

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places under the Idaho State University Neighborhood Historic District, construction of the Servel House began in the fall of 1917 and was completed in late fall of 1918. Julia and Xavier Servel, owners of the house, hired Boyer and Rogers, a local architectural firm to assist with the design, and Murphey Brothers, a Boise construction firm, to construct the four-story structure. The main floor consists of the entry, living room, dining room, kitchen, laundry room, and a study.

 

The second floor originally had five bedrooms, bathroom, and a small sitting room. One of the original bedrooms is now part of the master closet.

 

The top floor, originally designed as a children’s play area, now has two bedrooms. The second floor balcony remains intact.

 

The Servels lived in the house for a short time before bankruptcy proceedings forced them to move.

 

The first President to live in the house was Dr. John R. Nichols, who served as Executive Dean for the University of Idaho-Southern Branch, from 1934 – 1942 and as an Interim from 1945 – 1947. He leased the Servel house from late 1938 – 1939 while he was building his own house.

 

On July 5, 1951, the Idaho State Board of Education purchased the Servel House as the official residence of ISU’s Presidents and their families. They paid $22,134.00 for the home. Dr. Carl McIntosh was President at this time, and became the first to live in the newly acquired residence. Those who followed Dr. McIntosh and lived in the Servel House included:

 

  • Dr. and Mrs. Donald E. Walker, 1959 - 1964. 
  • Dr. and Mrs. William E. Davis, 1965-1975. 
  • Dr. and Mrs. Myron L. Coulter, 1976-1984. 
  • Dr. and Mrs. Richard L. Bowen, 1985-2005. 
  • Dr. Arthur C. and Dr. Laura Vailas, 2006-2018.
  • Mr. Kevin Satterlee and Margaret Satterlee, 2018 – present.

 

In addition to the long tradition of ISU Presidents residing in the Servel House, others developed over the years, including:

 

  • President’s Holiday Open House for Community Members;
  • President’s Holiday Open House for ISU Faculty and Staff;
  • Commencement Luncheon for Award Winner, VIPs, and Platform Guests;
  • Recognition BBQ for Communiversity Committee Members;
  • Dinner for Local Legislators;
  • March through the Arch BBQ;   
  • State Board of Education Dinner;  
  • Recognition Receptions for ISU Sports Teams who win Big Sky Championships;
  • Recognition Dinner for Honorary Doctorate Recipients;
  • Retirement/Farewell Dinners for ISU Administrators;
  • Welcome Dinners for new VIPs;
  • Various other receptions/dinners with dignitaries and VIPs that arise

 

 

 

 
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