COPYRIGHT 2020 © PRESERVATION ALLIANCE OF LAFAYETTE
Givens Cottage was built by Sallie Torian Givens for her daughter, Louise Slye Givens, when Louise married Baxter Clegg in 1897. In 1916, Louise was persuaded by college President, Dr. Edward L. Stephens, to become the first full-time librarian at Southwestern Louisiana Industrial Institute. She worked there until her retirement in 1939. This building is a contributing structure in Sterling Grove National Historic District, and it further codifies details about the District’s history, specifically the families who lived on this block of North Sterling Street at the turn of the 20th century. In 1893, Sallie purchased the property at 324 and 318 North Sterling Street from Martha Greig Mudd, wife of Dr. Francis Sterling Mudd for $925.00. The purchase consisted of three arpents of land next to the Charles Mouton Plantation home, then owned by Dr. J. B. Mudd. It was this sale that initiated the dedication of the street as North Sterling Street. The Givens Cottage was originally built as an Eastlake style house with beaded spindles, scroll-sawn cutouts and spindle-style turned wood posts. Sometime in the early 1900s, the Eastlake detailing was removed to achieve a more Craftsman appearance, which was the popular architectural style of the time.