Sigma Pi Fraternity International announced the purchase of the Mitchell House in Lebanon, which will be used as the new home of its Executive Office.
Formerly, Sigma Pi’s Executive Office was located in Brentwood.
Although a purchase price was not mentioned in the news release announcing the transaction, the Mitchell House had been listed at $1,095,000 at www.loopnet.com.
Built in 1910 as the home of Dr. David Mitchell and his family, the Mitchell House has also served as a school and office building. Once the Mitchell family left the home, it sat dormant for several years before being purchased by Castle Heights Military Academy and used as the junior school from 1936 to 1986.
In 1998, Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. purchased the Mitchell Home and began restoration. Cracker Barrel founder Danny Evins was a graduate of CHMA and later served as chairman of its board of directors while his son attended the school. Evins and others wanted to return the establishment to its grandeur of the early 1900s.
Through the restoration efforts of Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc., the Mitchell House is listed as a historic landmark on both the State of Tennessee registry and the National Register of Historic Places.
Sigma Pi Grand Sage Christopher Brown announced at the 50th Biennial Convocation held in 2010 in Danvers, Mass., that Sigma Pi would be in a new headquarters by 2014. He appointed members to the New Headquarters Committee to investigate other fraternity headquarters and come up with a recommendation on the type of building the fraternity would pursue.
Through the efforts of Executive Director Michael Ayalon and the committee, the Mitchell House was determined to fit the criteria and the purchase was completed. The move signifies the improved and continued focus to bring Sigma Pi to the forefront of fraternal organizations, a spokesperson said, adding the historic building will give Sigma Pi a platform to create an impressive image and a national presence.
The floor plan of the home allows for the first floor to function as the museum of Sigma Pi and provides meeting space through two boardrooms. This area also will serve as a place for brotherhood initiations to take place. All business offices are located on the second floor.
In the past, the Mitchell House also served as a location for weddings, photography sessions and events. The building will now be reopened for such events effective immediately. Interested parties can visit www.mitchellhouse.org for more information.
“We are grateful for the support and respect shown by both Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. and the city of Lebanon throughout this process, and look forward to a great partnership with Lebanon and surrounding businesses in the future,” Ayalon said.
“As we look toward the future, Sigma Pi will continue to go above and beyond to maintain the foundation that the Founding Fathers built for the fraternity. The move to the Mitchell House is a new chapter in the history of Sigma Pi. We will continue to build upon the legacy that has been created over the past 117 years.”
Sigma Pi Fraternity was founded in 1897 at Vincennes University, in Vincennes, Ind., and has more than 120 active chapters and colonies in the United States and Canada.
Notable alumni include: Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, country music artist and Wilson County resident Tracy Lawrence, and Jack Daniels Master Distiller Jeff Arnett.