Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts
Wheaton College
College History



Holmes Cottage

Laban Morey Wheaton built this home for his mother, Fanny Morey Wheaton, after the death of his father in 1846. Originally built on the southeast corner of Howard and Main Streets, it was moved across the street in 1856 when additions were planned for Old Metcalf Hall. The house was sold to Edwin Freeman in 1865, but in 1897 it came into the possession of the Seminary.

The house served as the Trinitarian Congregational Church parsonage for many years. In 1846, it was occupied by the Rev. Franklin Holmes, who married the Seminary Principal Martha Sawyer in that year, and the house came to be known as Holmes Cottage. Martha Sawyer (Mrs. Rev. Franklin) Holmes graduated in the Seminary's first class (1839). She taught at Wheaton from 1840 to 1846, and served as principal from 1842 to 1846, when she left to marry Rev. Franklin Holmes.

Holmes Cottage housed the Department of Household Economics (Domestic Science) from 1908 until 1912 when the department moved to the new Science Hall (Knapton). It also served as student housing until 1929, when it was remodeled to house eight members of the faculty. In 1962, the house was converted into a Spanish dormitory, "Casa Espanola," where Spanish ruled the decor and the conversation. It was razed in 1965 to make room for the new Elisabeth Amen Nursery School.

Holmes Cottage was named for Rev. Franklin Holmes and his wife Mrs. Martha Sawyer Holmes. Martha Sawyer married Rev. Franklin Holmes, Wheaton Trustee from 1853 to 1859, and they lived in the house that bears their name.

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