Hiwassee College Campus Purchased by Bruderhof
NAI Koella Moore, The Board of Trustees at Hiwassee College, in collaboration with the Bruderhof, is pleased to announce the successful purchase and sale of Hiwassee College’s campus. “This has been a long but faithful process since the college held its final graduation in May 2019. The board’s sole desire has been the preservation and continued use of these hallowed grounds, so we are pleased to have found a purchaser that will build on the legacy of the college while continuing to be an asset to Monroe County and East Tennessee,” said Board Chair, Rev. Jason Gattis.
Owner Maribel Koella and Broker Sam Tate were the NAI Koella Moore agents representing this sale, a deal that began forming in September of 2020. The Bruderhof organization not only purchased the 285 acres that was the Hiawassee campus, but also purchased an additional 105 acres that at one time, was part of the original Hiawassee campus, which Koella and Tate also brokered.
The Bruderhof is a Christian communal organization in the Anabaptist tradition, with a hundred-year history in Europe and the US. They plan to refurbish the Hiwassee campus, and in time, operate a Christian community of families, an elementary school, and a workshop.
John Burleson, one of four Bruderhof members staying on the campus while the sale is arranged, says they have been warmly welcomed into the neighborhood: “People here couldn’t be nicer. My wife and I are really looking forward to putting down roots in Madisonville and making new friends. One thing we have particularly appreciated is meeting alumni of the college and hearing their fond memories. I know it was difficult for many people to see the college close, but we are inspired to begin building community again, both on the property itself and within the wider community that has welcomed us so warmly.”
In October, representatives of The Bruderhof visited the campus to meet with NAI Koella Moore agents, members of the board, neighbors of the campus, and members of local and state government.
Glenn Moser, Mayor of Madisonville said, “It was a pleasure to meet at the Hiwassee setting. I am looking forward to more interaction with the Bruderhof in our community.”
Brandy Gentry was also there, representing the Monroe County Chamber of Commerce. “It’s going to be a change from a college setting, but I appreciate their openness to work with the community, to continue Hiwassee as an important part of our county history,” she said.
Monroe County Mayor Mitch Ingram says he stopped by the campus to welcome the Bruderhof to Madisonville. “It was great to sit down with members of the Bruderhof community and discuss their thoughts and plans for this historic campus,” he said. “I know they will be a welcome addition to Monroe County.”
Hiwassee College was a private liberal arts college in Madisonville, Tennessee. Founded in 1849, the college is associated with The United Methodist Church and offered associate degrees as well as bachelor’s degrees.
“We are grateful for the college’s 175 years of service to students seeking higher education, and we pray that the impact and mission of Hiwassee College will always carry on through its alumni and faculty,” said Rev. Gattis.