Stonehill Myths: Separating Fact from Fiction

October 26, 2010

With new generations of students, legendary Stonehill myths persist.

Take the children of Fredrick Lothrop Ames, the man who built Donahue Hall.

His daughter Mary, the legend says, drowned in the swimming pool of what is now Alumni Hall. Many believe this is why, out of respect, the College does not have a pool.

Another popular tale tells us that his son Freddy died after he crashed his plane on campus.

And, so many whisper about what lies underneath the tiles in Holy Cross Center's lobby: buried bodies.

Despite their currency, none of these claims are true.

Mary did not drown in her family's indoor swimming pool. She lived until she was 74 and died of natural causes in 1982.

The cost of insurance and upkeep is a more likely reason for not having a pool on campus.

Although Freddy did die in a plane crash in 1932, the accident happened in Randolph, not at the College.

And, what lies beneath the tiles in Holy Cross Center? A foundation, which was preceded first by a fountain and later by a garden.

As you read this, however, some juniors and seniors are probably gleefully sharing one of these myths to a new generation. As the slogan goes, never let truth stand in the way of a good story.


For more information, contact Communications and Media Relations at 508-565-1321.