The Frank C. Atherton House, built in 1902, is significant for its importance as part of the development of the College Hills tract in Manoa Valley during the early part of the 20th century. As one of the first large houses in the area, the Atherton House helped establish a trend that was to transform former taro and dairy farms into an up-scale residential area. The first occupants of the home were Frank Cooke Atherton, his wife Eleanore, and their children. The Athertons, who were active in business and civic affairs, were in many ways representative of a Caucasian elite that dominated Hawaii’s economic and political life until the time of statehood. The house at College Hill is a document of this social and ethnic group’s ascendancy in the Hawaiian Islands during the early 20th century. Lastly, the Atherton House is significant as an example of a larger shingle-covered, wood frame house in Hawaii, showing Mid-western Prairie-Style and late Victorian, Queen Anne-Style influences. It preserves much of ite original and historic character and is an example of a private mansion adapted to Hawaii’s tropical environment.
This list of Hawaii’s historic properties is provided as a public service by Historic Hawaii Foundation. It is not the official list of properties designated on the Hawaii State Register of Historic Places. For official designations and determinations of eligibility, contact the State Historic Preservation Division of the Department of Land and Natural Resources of the State of Hawaii at 808-692-8015.