The Woodburn House, located at 519 N. College Avenue, is more than 175 years old. The original section was created in 1829 by Samuel Hardesty, and consisted of two rooms, each with a fireplace, a frame lean-to addition, and a frame kitchen behind.
Professor James Woodburn purchased the entire block for $1,100 in 1855, and the house remained in his family until 1941. Woodburn enlarged the house to its present structure in 1858, enlarging the structure and adding a second story. He died in 1865, and his widow began taking in student borders.
The house was known for its students in those years, apparently seeing the organization of the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority and an underground student newspaper called the The Dagger. Later, faculty members including William Lowe Bryan and Amos Hershey, were residents.
Professor James A. Woodburn ended the boarding house when he and his family moved in in the early 1900's, remaining there until his retirement in 1924. Later, Dr. Herman B Wells moved in and remained in the residence until 1957. During his residency, he presented the house to Indiana University. Later occupants included the Joseph Franklin and Thomas Cosgrave families.