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History

Solon & Martha DixonThe Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center was a gift to Auburn University from Solon and Martha Dixon, residents of Andalusia, Alabama. Solon Dixon’s love of natural resources, Auburn University and young people created a vision that became reality in 1978 with his donation of 5350 acres, the Dixon family home-site and funds for the creation of the Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center.

Mr. Dixon wanted a place where young people could experience nature, while learning about forestry, wildlife and the many other aspects of natural resources management. He envisioned a place for applied teaching and learning, where people could see and experience the effects of management practices.

At the time, this gift was the largest ever made to Auburn University by a living donor.

Since it's dedication in 1980, the Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center has managed its natural resources and programs to meet the objectives of: (1) providing quality natural resource education to a variety of user groups, particularly Auburn University students; (2) providing a base for and support of research efforts in natural resource fields; (3) serving as a source of information and technology transfer from the scientific community to the general public; and (4) managing its own natural resources wisely and economically to provide income for the Center's programs.

Today the campus facilities include two “bunkhouse style” dormitories and five "hotel style" dorms with private/semi-private accommodations. A separate private/semi-private staff quarters is available for visiting faculty. Meals are prepared in a full service kitchen/dining hall, while most of the Center's classroom activities take place in the newly constructed, Solon and Marth Dixon Foundation Learning Center, and the Charles Dixon Auditorium. This is a versatile building constructed with a gift from Solon Dixon's sister-in-law, Mrs. Thelma Dixon in memory of her late husband. Other buildings include the Martha Dixon Administration Building, the recreation building, and the maintenance shop. Residences for the Center Director and Assistant Director are located on the site, as is the historic Dixon Family home, built in the 1830's and maintained as a repository of family and regional memorabilia.