Hill, Phillip E. House

515 Elm St

1850

Architectural Style

Greek Revival, Italianate

Significance

Agriculture, Architecture

Use Type

Agricultural, Single Family Dwelling House

Neighborhood

Massachusetts Historical Commission Report

Architectural Significance

This handsome Greek Revival/Italianate house was built c. 1850 and like its neighbor, to the immediate south, represents an unusual variation on a mid 19th c. Bridgewater housing form. Composed of a 2 1/2 story main block, its west facing 5-bay main facade displays tall, multi-pane windows and a center entrance with a heavy, classical enframement. Particularly noteworthy is the encircling porch (west and south walls) with fluted Doric columns which support a heavy entablature and the overhanging second floor. This house is enclosed by a broad gable with 6/6 wood sash attic windows. This house's most distinctive feature is its small, square, 3 bay x 2 bay cupola which is surmounted by a deep cornice and flat roof. This house and its southern neighbor represent unusually picturesque and ambitious mid-19th century frame vernacular housing forms, located far from the town's center.

Historical Significance

For many years this house was associated with Bridgewater's Hill family. As early as the 1830s a house belonging to a B. Hill was located on or near this site. The present house was built c. 1850 for Phillip E. Hill, farmer and insurance agent. By 1879 George W. Hill, farmer, lived here. By the early 1900s a Mrs. Williams owned 515 Elm St. and the house next door to the south. This house is surrounded by fields and wetlands—some of the most dramatic and unspoiled landscapes in Bridgewater are to be found here, near the west Bridgewater line—although the house is within sight of Route 24. To the east is the Great Cedar swamp.