Welcome to the

Millville, Massachusetts



The Chestnut Street Meeting House is one of New England's best preserved 18th century meeting houses; a fine example of the primary public building in that landscape.  When it was built in the late 1760's, this area was part of the town of Mendon, established in 1667 as a large rectangle of eight miles on a side.  As required in Massachusetts, Mendon provided a minister of the established Puritan orthodoxy and had built three meeting houses in succession in the north-central part of the town where settlement occured first.  As the town's population expanded and farmsteads spread across its extensive acreage, the large town was divided into multiple smaller entities, known ecclesiastically as parishes and municipally as precincts.  This meeting house served as the general meeting place for the southern part of the town along the Rhode Island border, known as South Parish or South Precince, Mendon, and established in 1766.

In spite of its auspicious beginning, the parish never flourished and only two ministers were called to serve briefly; there has not been an associated church since early in the 19th century.  Since that time, the area was incorporated as the town of Blackstone in 1845 and in the western section, where the meeting house is located, became the Town of Millville in 1916.

The Chestnut Street Meeting House is a white clapboard sided two-story building that has a first floor footage of 1,442 square feet and is located at the corner of Chestnut Hill Road and Thayer Street in the town of Millville, Massachusetts.

The land was donated by Benoni Benson in 1766.  The Chestnut Street Meeting House was constructed in 1769, for the South Parish of Mendon, Massachusetts.  The exterior dimensions of the Meeting House are 35' 6" wide by 40' long with its main entrance centered in the five bay south facade of the building.  Secondary entrances are located in the east and west gable end walls.  The interior of the building contains raised-box pews on the first floor and elevated pulpit with sounding board in the middle of the north wall and stairs in the second story gallery.

According to a July 2006 Preservation Studies Program Report prepared by Boston University, the Meeting House, "among a group of about 175 period meeting houses and churches to survive in some fashion in New England, is certainly one of the best preserved and it compares favorably with most of these well-preserved examples, having undergone less 19th century change and less 20th century restoration than some of the others."

The Meeting House was recorded by the Historic American Building Survey in 1935 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984.

West Entrance                                                   East Entrance