The Martha Cook Building first housed women students of the University of Michigan in 1915. New York lawyer William W. Cook, a Michigan alumnus, donated the building. The Collegiate Gothic residence was named for Cook's mother, Martha W. Cook. New York architects York and Sawyer designed this building as well as the university Law Quadrangle, one of Cook's later donations. Paul Suttman's garden statue, known as "Eve," was a fiftieth anniversary gift of the building's alumnae.
A statue of Portia, the heroine of Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice, stands above the entrance of the Martha Cook Building. Gothic groin vaults frame the ground floor hallway, which houses a full-sized marble replica of the Venus de Milo. The Red Room, which connects to the Gold Room by a paneled alcove, displays a seventeenth century Flemish tapestry. William W. Cook's Steinway piano, commissioned in 1913, as well as a bust of Cook are exhibited in the Gold Room.