Category Archives: Houses

Samuel L. Hill House (1845)

Samuel L. Hill House

Samuel L. Hill was one of the founders of the Northampton Association of Education and Industry (NAEI), a nineteenth-century utopian community located in the village of Florence in Northampton. In the 1830s, S. L. Hill had worked as an overseer in a cotton factory in Willimantic, Connecticut. He came to Florence in 1841, where he became a leading citizen and established the Nonotuck Silk Company. An abolitionist, Hill actively aided slaves on the Underground Railroad. Among his other acts of philanthropy was the founding of the Florence Kindergarten, now the Hill Institute. His house, at 29-33 (or 31-35) Maple Street in Florence, was built around 1845. The south wing is the earliest section of the house, which is Arthur G. Hill, his son, also became one of Florence’s leading citizens and lived in the house until the 1920’s.

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Mary Ellen Chase House (1827)

Chase House

Attached to Duckett House, an 1810 residence in Northampton that is now a Smith College dorm, is the Mary Ellen Chase House, another dorm named for a Smith College professor and author. Chase House was built in 1827 (or perhaps as early as 1810) as a residence by Elijah Hunt Mills (1776-1829), a lawyer and politician. After Mills’ death, the house was owned and occupied by Thomas Napier, originally from North Carolina, who was a slave-auctioneer and anti-abolitionist. The house later passed through other owners until 1877, when it was sold to Miss Mary Burnham to establish a school for young ladies (the Northampton Classical School for Girls). The objective was to provide better academic preparation for young women wishing to attend the new Smith College. A new rear wing was soon added to the house to accommodate the school, as well as a central tower (later removed) and a Mansard roof (which remains). The Burnham School later moved out of Northampton and Smith acquired the house in 1968.

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Judge Bailey Aldrich House (1930)

89 Shaker Rd., Harvard

The house at 89 Shaker Road in Harvard was built around 1830 on the site of one of the former dwellings of the Harvard Shaker Village. Judge Bailey Aldrich designed the house with the builder Harold Bigelow to reflect the Shaker tradition of simplicity.

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Root House (1840)

Root House

Known as the Root House, the house at 63 Broad Street in Westfield was built c. 1840.

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Jonas Merriam House & Tavern (1807)

Jonas Merriam House & Tavern (1807)

A tavern had long stood at the site where Jonas Merriam built a Federal-style house in 1807 at 1 Elm Street, near the Common, in Harvard. Merriam built the house to also serve as a tavern that would take advantage of traffic expected to pass by on the newly opened Union Turnpike. As described in Vol. 2 of the History of Harvard (1894), by Henry S. Nourse:

When the Union Turnpike was completed and Harvard expected to become a way station on a great thoroughfare between Boston and the upper valley of the Connecticut, Jonas Merriam’s tavern was opened in rivalry with Ezra Wetherbee’s, which faced it across the common. Neither turnpike nor inn rewarded the owners’ hopes, and Merriam removed to Shirley in 1816, selling his estate to Seth Nason.

Seth Nason was a founder of the Evangelical Church and town treasurer from 1825-34. He operated a shop in the house before purchasing the building at the corner of Still River Road and Massachusetts Avenue in 1820. Among later owners of the house was Dr. Augustus Robbins. The Evangelical Church also used it for a time as a parsonage in the mid-nineteenth century. The house has had various owners since then.

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D. H. DeLand House (1904)

D. H. DeLand House

The D. H. DeLand House is at 168 Pineywoods Avenue in the Forest Park section of Springfield. The house was built in 1904.

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Charles and Lucretia M. Daniels House (1873)

Charles and Lucretia M. Daniels House

The Gothic Revival cottage at 29 Arlington Street in Northampton was built on land acquired by Lucretia Daniels, wife of Charles Daniels, in 1873. By 1880 the couple were living in the house with their two teen-aged sons and by 1884 Lucretia was listed as a widow. She lived in the house through 1917.

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