27 Hollis Street

Deacon William Leland or "The Old Red House"

Form No.          44

Town              Sherborn
Address           27 Hollis Street

Historic Name     Deacon William Leland or "The Old Red House"

Uses: Original    Residence
       Present    Residence

Ownership, 1981   G. Farrington Fiske
  "    Original   Deacon William Leland

Constructed       1717

Source            "Historical Sketches, Sherborn 1652-1952"

Style/Form        Early 18th century frame vernacular


Ext. Wall Fabric  Clapboards, asphalt shingle roof

Outbuildings      Shed


Moved             No

Acreage           3.45 acres

Setting:          Situated in Sherborn's farming estate neighborhood
                  known as Stannoch. Lot is exceptionally well maintained
                  and features an herb garden adjacent to main facade.


This venerable dwelling, like so many late 17th and 18th century New England houses faces south. It is composed of a 2 1/2 story main block and a west ell. It is crowned by a gable roof from the center of which springs a massive central chimney. Its clapboards are covered with a black creosote-like substance. Its main 5 bay facade features narrow windows with 9/6 sash. Its front door is surrounded by simple vertical boards and a dentillated horizontal board. This house's trim is painted red.


This house was built in 1717 for Deacon William Leland, one of early 18th century Sherborn's most prominent citizens. He was born on Feb. 11, 1692, the fifth of ten children of Deacon Hopestill Leland and Abigail Hill. His grandfather, Henry, along with Thomas Holbrook, Nicholas Wood, Daniel Morse, etc. had been among Boggestow, later Sherborn's, first settlers. Deacon William married Mehitable Brick and their first child was born in 1717. Besides running a prosperous farm he served as Town Clerk for five years and representative of the General Court in 1735. He died on 18 March, 1743.

Lelands owned this property until the mid 19th century. Deacon William's son, Simeon (born 1730), inherited this property and he in turn passed it to his son, Samuel (born 1752). Samuel's sons, James and Samuel occupied the house until they moved to Mill St. about 1810. At that time this house became occupied by Lemuel Leland, son of Barak and grandson of William who was Simeon's brother. Lemuel married Polly Ware about 1809 and moved his young family into this house after the death of Samuel in 1817. Lemuel's brother Walter, was already living next door in 23 Hollis Street.


  • Historical Sketches, Sherborn Tercentenary, 1652-1952" compiled by Francis Bardwe11
  • Margaret Dowse Buntin's research
  • Anne C. Shaughnessy - A Guide to Sherborn and The History Of Sherborn
  • Maps of 1788, 1875 and 1889
  • Susan Ware's Genealogical work, 1981


Deacon William Leland House (date unknown)