Historic Markers Across Florida

John R. Mott House Site

Marker ID: FLHM F-932
Location: 528 E. Washington St., Orlando, FL
County: Orange
Coordinates: N 28° 32.609    W 081° 22.200
  28.54348333    -81.37
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMWCR1


John R. Mott House Site

(Side 1)
Built in 1920, the former house at 528 E. Washington Street was once home to Nobel Peace Prize winner John Raleigh Mott (1869-1955). As general secretary of the National War Work Council, a World War I era Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) program, Mott received the Distinguished Service Medal for his relief work for prisoners of war. Mott served as general secretary of the YMCA International Committee from 1915-1928 and president of the YMCA World Committee from 1926-1937. As a leader of many civic and Christian organizations, he traveled abroad and delivered thousands of speeches. He averaged 34 days a year on the ocean for 50 years and crossed the Atlantic over 100 times and the Pacific 14 times. Known to travel plainly, he refused a ticket on the Titanic to sail instead on a less extravagant ship. Mott received honorary degrees from six universities including Yale, Edinburgh, Princeton, and Brown. His numerous international honors, awards, and designations included recognition from China, Czechoslovakia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Poland, Portugal, Siam, Sweden, and the United States. Mott was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1946 for his humanitarian work.

(Side 2)
John Mott retired to Orlando in 1938 and bought the one-story bungalow at this site. Over the course of his career, Mott wrote sixteen books and delivered thousands of speeches. During his retirement, he compiled volumes of his speeches, letters, and papers. The compilations included correspondence with prominent American and International philanthropists and political and religious leaders. In 1952, Mott's wife Lelia White died. They had married in 1891 and had four children. After her death, Mott married Agnes Peter, a descendant of Martha Washington. Following his death in Orlando on January 31, 1955, Mott's family donated his collected works to the Yale Divinity School Library where it fills 230 archival boxes that occupy 95 linear feet of shelf space. These papers provide information and insight regarding individuals and religious movements from 1880-1955. The bungalow Mott lived in was demolished in 2013 to provide additional space for Lake Eola Park. John Mott was interred in St. Joseph's Chapel of the Washington National Cathedral. He remains locally and internationally renowned for his accomplishments and leadership.

Florida Heritage Site

F-932 Sponsored by Oscar J. Nollet Family,
Commissioner Patty Sheehan, the Van Dusen-Wheeler Family
and the Florida Department of State