Concord School of Philosophy (1880)


Adjacent to Orchard House (the home of A. Bronson Alcott and his family) is a building, designed and built by Alcott himself in 1880, which was originally called the Hillside Chapel and is known today as the Concord School of Philosophy. This school, which was organized by Alcott and operated from 1879 to 1888, was modeled on Plato’s Academy as series of of summer lectures for adults, with notable speakers and discussions of philosophy. For the first year, the sessions were held in Orchard House, but the following year and thereafter, the school met in Alcott’s Hillside Chapel. The school’s final meeting, in 1888, commemorated Alcott, who had died that year. Today, the building is part of the Orchard House museum. Read More

“New” Nathaniel Ely House (1856)

New Nathaniel Ely House

The Nathaniel Ely House (called “New” to distinguish it from the earlier “Old” Nathaniel Ely House nearby) was built in 1856 off Longmeadow Green. The Thomas Bliss House originally stood where the Ely House was later conbstructed, but was moved across the street to make way for the new structure. The Ely House has elements from a variety of architectural styles, including the Federal, Italianate and Gothic styles–truly a Victorian Eclectic building!

Mellen Law Office (1826)

Mellen Law Office

Located on a green in the center of Wayland is the Mellen Law Office. It was built in 1826 by Samuel Hale Mann, who only practiced law there for four years before ill health forced him to sell it (and his house across the street) to Edward Mellen, who eventually became chief justice of the Court of Common Pleas in Worcester. The office housed many other offices and businesses over the years, all the while remaining in the possession of the Mellen family. In 1971, it was donated to the town and is maintained by the Wayland Historical Society.

Sudbury Grange Hall (1846)

Sudbury Grange Hall

In 1846, the same year Sudbury’s original Town Hall (rebuilt in 1932) was constructed, a schoolhouse was built on the southeast corner of Sudbury Common. The structure was later raised to two-stories. The building, later moved to its current location next to the Town Hall, served as a school until 1890, when it was sold to the Sudbury Grange. In 2006, the building was acquired by the Sudbury Foundation and has been restored and modernized, with a new rear addition. The first floor is now the Foundation’s offices and the second floor is used by the Sudbury Grange and as a public meeting space by the town.

West India Goods Store (1804)


Typical of the waterfront commercial buildings of early nineteenth century Salem is the West India Goods Store on Derby Street. Now a part of the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, the Store was built sometime between 1800 and 1815, probably around 1804, by the merchant, Captain Henry Prince, Sr., when he lived in the Derby House next door. Prince probably used it as a warehouse, its first documented use as a store being in 1836. The store actually sold goods from all over the world, the term “West India Goods Store” being a generic term for a store selling international goods. The building was altered many times over the years, being moved at one point from the left of the house to the right. It was restored by the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities in 1928 and was acquired by the Park Service in 1937. Today the Store sells items similar to those it would have sold in the nineteenth century.