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The Cocke family agreed to turn over ownership if sufficient funds were raised in 1925, but the Depression slowed their efforts. Hollins was one of the first colleges in the nation to establish a study abroad program, launching Hollins Abroad-Paris in 1955.

After slavery was abolished, Hollins employed many formerly enslaved people, mostly women whose names were not recorded.

Students were encouraged to ignore these workers in the college handbook during this era, and employees were forbidden from developing friendly relationships with women studying at Hollins.

Charles Lewis Cocke's death in 1901 at the age of eighty-one was a grave moment for the Hollins Institute, but the transition to the leadership of his forty-five-year-old daughter Matty Cocke was smooth.

Miss Cocke was not interested in waging any battles for women's education; indeed, she let her nephews, Joseph Turner and M.

The Main building was built in 1861 at the north end of the quadrangle, Bradley Chapel was erected in 1883 between the East and Main Buildings, the octagonal Botetourt Hall was built in 1890, and the Charles Cocke Memorial Library was built in 1908 at the south end of the quadrangle.

The main dorm of Hollins University was decorated and enhanced by the local nineteenth century carpenter and woodworker, Gustave A. "In Sedon's daybook, his journals, all these bits and pieces of decorations are noted.

Before the Civil War, Hollins used the labor of enslaved people to build and maintain the grounds.

In addition, many students brought "servants" with them who were likely slaves.

Hollins was home to the first exhibition gallery in the Roanoke region in 1948. Hollins also sponsors an annual service-learning project in Lucea, Jamaica.

One of the first writer-in-residence programs in America began at Hollins in 1959. In January, or J-Term, students follow their own independent course of study with a sponsoring professor, take off-campus internships, or study abroad with other Hollins students.

Hollins has since evolved into a full university with approximately 800 enrolled undergraduate and graduate students. Gaillard, Goodnight Moon author Margaret Wise Brown, Lee Smith, photographer Sally Mann, and Ellen Malcolm, founder of EMILY's List.

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