St. Jerome’s Roman Catholic Church was the city of Holyoke’s first Catholic church. Holyoke Catholics were first organized in 1856 and the church, located at 181 Hampden Street, was built in 1858-1860. The church was designed by prominent church architect Patrick Keely. A fire in 1934 destroyed everything but the church’s brick walls. The building was rebuilt to plans by John W. Donahue of Springfield. A chapel was added to the rear of the church, plans starting in 1939. Read More
The house at 111 Pleasant Street in Northampton was built around 1800. In 1836 it was purchased by Sylvester Graham, who lived there until his death in 1851. Sylvester Graham was a dietary reformer and temperance advocate who emphasized vegetarianism and baking a type of bread made with unbolted wheat flour, known as Graham Flour. The Graham Cracker is also named for him. The house‘s original gable roof was later replaced with a mansard roof.
The house at 159 Chestnut Street in Holyoke was built around 1870 for James Hale Newton (1832-1921), president of the Chemical Paper Company and the Home National Bank. In 1879 he established the Wauregan Mill, one of six he organized in Holyoke. In 1907, Newton moved to a larger house on the outskirts of the city. His old house house later briefly served (1911-1918) as the Holyoke Club. It was acquired in 1919 for the Holyoke Day Nursery, founded in 1916 and run by the Sisters of Providence. The building was enlarged in 1947 and attached to the neighboring carriage house.
The French Second Empire house at 8 Ayer Road in Harvard was built in 1869 on the site of the Bigelow-Willard House, which was moved at 18 Ayer Road. The house was built by George H. Fletcher (b. 1833) and his wife, who moved to Clinton in the 1880s. The house was then occupied by tenants until it was acquired by Emily E. Hildreth, who made alterations the building, which included erecting the two-story entrance porch. Hildreth called the house Sunny Side and held weekly summer lectures there from 1888 to 1910. Miss Hildreth‘s sister, Mrs. F. E. Farwell next lived in the house, which was sold in the 1930s to the Dodge family.
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.
The most impressive Second Empire-style house in Westfield is the Edwin L. Sanford House, at 33 West Silver Street. According to earlier research, an earlier house, built by A. J. Bradley circa 1857-1870, was moved when Edwin L. Sanford, president of the Sanford Whip Company, bought the property in 1869. A more recent date given for the Sanford House is circa 1865-1870.
Holyoke‘s most striking old factory building was constructed by the Albion Paper Company at what is now 15 Water Street. An earlier mill building on the site, belonging to the Hampton Company, was acquired by the Albion Company after the latter was formed in 1869. The Albion Company was sold to D.H. & J.C. Newton in 1877, who rebuilt the mill complex with substantial additions in 1878. The building features two mansard-roofed towers (the second one added post-1887), whose bells summoned workers for their shifts. The company manufactured book paper and engine sized flat paper. After experiencing accumulating large debts in the 1890s, the company was incorporated into the American Writing Paper Company in 1899. Another adjacent mill building, which was built circa 1880 by the Nonotuck Paper Company and later became the Mt. Tom Division of American Writing Paper Company, was destroyed by a fire earlier this year.