Old Town Hall

Old Town Hall is one of the most famous buildings in Lincoln, listed in the Massachusetts and the National Registers of Historic Places. Opened in 1848 to hold Lincoln’s civic gatherings, the Hall was soon hosting our first high school, and later our first public library. When purchased from the Town by a private citizen in 1884, it was moved from the site where Bemis Hall now stands, to across Bedford Rd, next to the white church. There it stood as a general store and post office for almost 30 years. In 1918, the Hall was hauled to its current address and was kept open for business throughout the move. Since then, it has housed a gas station, law office and a small publisher. Today the tenants include a post office, a real estate office and a women’s exchange that sells handcrafts, gifts and antiques. Income from leases and donations support the nonprofit that maintains the building.

Henry Ford tried to purchase Old Town Hall in 1931 to move it to his museum of significant American architecture in Michigan. The town didn’t let him. So he built a replica on the museum grounds, next to the Wright Brothers’ bicycle shop, and the homes of lexicographer Noah Webster and writer Robert Frost. The Hall holds a post office because Lincoln’s wealthiest citizen at the time, Sumner Smith, found it inconvenient to travel to the other post office (in the mall). He preferred to walk over the meadow to and from his house on Sandy Pond Road.

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