By Emily Gold Boutilier
First it was Chi Phi. Then Hamilton House. Now the 94-year-old dormitory and one-time fraternity house has been renamed again, this time for the family of a former resident.
In a ceremony on May 18, Hamilton House officially became Lipton House. The change recognizes an unrestricted gift to the college by members of the Lipton family, including principal benefactors Sally Lipton; her son Richard Lipton ’74; and his wife, Jane. A history major, Richard joined Chi Phi as a freshman and lived in the house for two years.
The dormitory sits on Route 9 and is among the oldest of Amherst’s 13 former fraternity houses. (The college renamed the Greek-letter houses in 1984, after abolishing the fraternity system. The name Hamilton House honored James Shelley Hamilton, Class of 1906, who wrote the music and lyrics for “Lord Jeffery Amherst.”)
The Liptons’ donation—the amount of which is being kept private—is in memory of Sanford Lipton, Sally’s husband and Richard’s father. “My father passed away not long after I graduated from Amherst, and my mother and I wanted to do something to remember him,” says Richard. “Though he started college in 1940, he left after two years to serve in World War II and never had the opportunity to return.”
Richard and Jane have four children, including Anne ’08 and Tricia ’12. Many Liptons attended the dedication ceremony, which took place two days before Tricia’s graduation. Richard Lipton served as honorary marshal at the commencement ceremony.