Steeped in history, Ellis Preserve possesses a unique character and community environment, which is unlike any other development in suburban Philadelphia. It honors the legacy of its predecessors as it creates a new sense of purpose for today’s community.
From 1922 to 1977, Ellis Preserve served as the home of Ellis College, a school that educated hundreds of girls throughout the Philadelphia region. Ellis College was established at the bequest of Charles E. Ellis, a local Philadelphia entrepreneur, who left the bulk of his estate in 1909 to the formation of a school for fatherless girls. Ellis had made his fortune through a horse drawn trolley company, and his desire was to return his fortune to the benefit of the community.
Ellis Preserve is testament to the legacy of Charles E. Ellis with an eye on the future as it creates a new sense of place for today’s business community. Originally constructed as Ellis College facilities, the Ballroom at Ellis Preserve, the newly renovated Ellis Athletic Center and six stone cottages remain on the property and stand as testaments to Ellis Preserve’s distinct history and provide amenity services to the community.
The development is also home to The John West House, which is situated on Route 252. The modest brick building was operated as a tavern until the 1740s and later served as home to Benjamin West, a noted 18th Century painter. The House is on the National Historical Registry and is open to the public with tours conducted by a local historical group.