Dr. James Ament

picture of Dr. Ament Dr. James E. Ament was educated at Indiana University, where he was a friend of Joseph Trees. When Trees decided to acquire National Park Seminary from John Cassedy, he called on his friend Ament to run the school. By the late 1920's, Ament was successful enough to buy out Trees' interest.

In general, he made no dramatic changes in the conduct or the policies of the school. During his term, he expanded the land available for the school by acquiring the land on which Edgewood manor house stood. He put most of it to use as a dairy farm to supply the Seminary.

He continued construction at NPS, by adding a Music Hall and a Ballroom, expanding Senior House, adding more kitchen and dining room space on to Main, and several other additions, including kitchenettes for each of the sorority houses. In general, the buildings that were added in the Ament era were not so fanciful as the sorority houses that date from the early Cassedy years. However, Ament Hall (which houses the Ballroom) was actually designed by Dr. Ament, who fancied himself an amateur architect.

Ament liked to name things after himself, such as renaming Edgewood Estate to Amentdale Estates when he acquired it, and the new buildings Ament Hall and Teresa Catherine Hall (for his wife).

Teresa Catherine Ament Ament became successful and wealthy during his tenure at NPS. He adopted the image of the "lord of the manor." A 12-cylinder Cadillac driven by a chauffeur picked up the Aments near their apartment in one of the additions to Senior House. The chauffeur lived in a house nearby.

Ament had the challenge of keeping the school going during the Great Depression. Enrollment dropped to a few dozen students. James Ament never saw the school recover, as he died in 1936. His widow, Teresa, was ill-equipped for the challenge of administering the school under these circumstances, so in 1937 she sold almost all of the land and buildings to Roy Tasco Davis.


This page was last maintained on 05/21/98.