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Milldam District

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Main St.
  • Vassall-Craigie-Longfellow House (Peter Vanderwarker or Antonina Smith)

Milling began in 1639–1640 on Mill Brook in Concord; the area around the dam became the commercial center of the community in the eighteenth century. In 1828, the Milldam Company was incorporated to purchase the properties on and near the milldam, drain the pond, and redevelop the commercial core. Along a gravel road on the site of the milldam, the company built new structures and sold lots for new commercial development. The first block of Main Street retains the area's most intact commercial district from the second quarter of the nineteenth century. The dominant early building in this block is the Concord Bank (1832) at 46–48 Main Street. Built just west of the site of the colonial gristmill, the bank was the first Greek temple-form building in Concord and the first bank in the community. Immediately east of the bank are two buildings that were constructed before 1830, making them the earliest surviving structures from this new development. The two-story brick store at 42–44 Main Street has first-floor bay windows, a restoration designed by Harry B. Little in the 1940s. Across Main Street, numbers 29 and 23–25 (1830s) and numbers 37–41 (c. 1845) are two-story Federal-style commercial buildings with high parapet double chimneys in their end or party walls. The adjacent district is composed of converted residences and later commercial buildings that have maintained the basic scale and character of these earliest structures.

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan


What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "Milldam District", [Concord, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Massachusetts

Buildings of Massachusetts: Metropolitan Boston, Keith N. Morgan, with Richard M. Candee, Naomi Miller, Roger G. Reed, and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009, 452-452.

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