House Facts

List of Masters/Faculty Deans

(In 2016, the title of Master was changed to Faculty Dean. Italics denotes Acting Master/Faculty Dean)

James Phinney Baxter III (1932-1937)

Charles Holt Taylor (1934-1935)

Raphael Demos (1937-1938)

David Mason Little (1938-1954)

Arthur M. Schlesinger (Summer 1942)

Kenneth J. Conant (Summer 1946)

Philip Hofer (Fall 1949)

Reuben A. Brower (1954-1967)

Joseph L. Walsh (1956-1957)

Zeph Stewart (1961-1962)

G. Wallace Woodworth (1965-1966)

William Liller (1968-1972)

Robert Kiely (1972-1999)

Richard E. Kronauer (1975-1977)

Richard E. Kronauer (1982-1983)

Eva Jones (1990-1991)

Richard C. Marius (1996-1997)

Judith and Sean Palfrey (1999-2021)

Sharon Howell (Fall 2011)

Mercedes Becerra and Salmaan Keshavjee (2021-Present)

House Arms and Motto

The House Arms are derived from an 1838 seal ring of John Quincy Adams. Subsequently, Adams House Master Baxter added gold to symbolize the Gold Coast, and four additional oak sprigs to the original one to represent the five original buildings of Adams House. Its official heraldic designation is: “Or, five sprigs of oak acorned in saltire, Gules.”

The House motto, “Alteri Seculo,” is taken from Cicero’s Tusculan Disputations: “He who plants trees labors for the benefit of future generations.” (“Serit arbores quae alteri s[a]eculo prosint.”)

Adams House Shield

House Song


“Adams, You’re There” by
Robert C. Doyle ‘42 Jean I. Gordon ‘42

We will raise our glasses high
We will drain our glasses dry.

Stand, stand and drink a toast

Drink to the life on the Gold Coast.

For our Alma Mater fair

Our cheers will fill the air

But the song we sing,

With the loudest ring,


Sister Colleges

Yale: Saybrook College

Cambridge: Christ's College