The Historic District National Register of Historic Places Information
Ed. Note: “The following information on buildings in the Historic District is taken from the Nomination for Placement on the National Register of Historic Places done by Lisa Mausolf, Historian, for the Town of Hollis under a CLG grant in 2000. It resulted in the placement of the district including properties shown on the map on the Register. The Historic District Commission in 2002 asked permission of those 58 property owners to place their properties on this website; the wishes of the 34 respondents have been honored and those not responding have been omitted; the thoughtful corrections and additions from owners have been added in italics. The reader wishing to read the entire description of the Historic District is referred to hard copy: Town Hall.”
The Hollis Village Historic District is located near the geographic center of the town of Hollis, a southern New Hampshire community in Hillsborough County. The district includes an area of approximately 400 acres in Hollis’ historic town center and the majority of properties in the district are residential in nature. In total, the district includes 90 contributing buildings, 32 buildings which are noncontributing, 11 contributing sites, 3 noncontributing sites, 4 contributing objects, 3 noncontributing objects and 1 additional building which was previously listed on the National Register.
The centerpiece of the district and the village is Monument Square, a triangular common around which the town’s public buildings were constructed beginning in the mid 18th century. To the west of Monument Square, NH Rt. 122 forms the western boundary of the district and extends in a roughly north-south direction. To the north of NH Rt. 130, Rt. 122 is known as Silver Lake Road, while to the south of this intersection, the road is known as Main Street. Extending to the south of the east side of Monument Square is Depot Road which is roughly parallel to Main Street. To the north of Monument Square the road is known as Broad Street and extends in a north-south direction for a short distance adjacent to the old Burial Ground before making a sharp turn to the northeast. The district also includes several properties at the east end of Ash Street (Rt. 130) which extends east from Rt. 122 (Main Street/Silver Lake Road) eastward, terminating at an angled intersection with Broad Street. The terrain within the village center is fairly level and the open agricultural fields which surround the concentration of buildings are a major character-defining element. Historic views of the district in the 19th century reveal a landscape which is considerably more open than that seen today. Mature trees have grown up around most of the residential properties.
With the exception of the civic buildings near Monument Square including the town hall, library, church, engine house and high school, the majority of structures within the village are residential in character. Commercial uses include the restaurant and donut shop at the Rt. 122/Rt. 130 intersection (“Four Corners”), the store in Monument Square (which has functioned as such since the mid 19th century) and Brookdale Farm store and the feed store on Broad Street. An additional commercial concentration along Ash Street has been excluded from the proposed district. In some cases, residential buildings have been sympathetically converted to professional offices.
Throughout the village there are visible reminders of the village’s agricultural heritage although today there is little in the way of active production other than the Brookdale Farm lands. The former barn at 50 Main Street now serves as a dwelling. A three-story hen house at 60 Broad Street (#68A) functions as a feed store. Dairy barns/outbuildings are located at 43 Main Street (#18) and 60 Broad Street (no longer in active use). Many of the other village buildings retain attached barns although many of these have been converted to other uses. Several properties including 29 Main Street (#14A) and 11 Main Street (#8A) retain 19th century cobbler or shoe shops which provided additional income for their owners during winter months.
Buildings in the village are generally 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 stories in height and are in good to excellent condition. Most are of wood-frame construction with clapboards predominating and a few instances of aluminum or vinyl siding. Several of the Federal-era buildings display brick ends and most of the buildings in the district are set on granite block foundations. The buildings of the village illustrate a range of styles popular between the late 18th and early twentieth centuries and include examples of the Georgian, Federal, Greek Revival, Gothic Revival, Italianate, Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Classical Revival, Bungalow and Four Square.
Alterations to buildings in the district have been minimal. Several buildings within the village were moved to new sites, still within the village during the period of significance including 55 Broad Street (#71). In some cases, damage by fire has resulted in the reconstruction of parts of buildings. As has been mentioned, few buildings have been sheathed in artificial sidings although changes to windows are more widespread. Within the district there are approximately thirty-one buildings that are non-contributing due to their recent date of construction and one which is considered non-contributing due to its degree of alteration.
A description of the individual properties which comprise the district follows, beginning at the northern end of Rt. 122 commencing with the buildings on the west side of Rt. 122, continuing southward to the southern terminus of the district and proceeding with descriptions of buildings on the east side of Main Street, followed by those fronting Monument Square. Descriptions follow for the properties along the west and east sides of Depot Street, covering several properties on Ash Street near the Broad Street intersection and continuing with the properties along the north side of Broad Street as far as Wheeler Road before concluding with the buildings on the south side of Broad Street.
Ed. Note: “Numbers following refer to location on map of Historic District. The terms “contributing” and “non-contributing” have reference to age and condition of historic buildings to the entire historic district; to be considered historic a building must be 50 years or older at the time of listing with the State or National Register. Properties omitted from this descriptive list are those which did not grant permission.”