John Greenleaf Whittier Homestead

305 Whittier Road, Haverhill, Massachusetts 01830 | (978) 373-3979
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Type: Museums & Monuments
Ages: Ages 3 — adult
Cost: $
Hours of operation: See site for hours

In 1688, in a small  pleasant valley under the shoulder of Job’s Hill, Thomas Whittier, the pioneer,  built the house which was to be the Whittier family homestead. The family lived  there for five generations and it was the Birthplace of the Quaker Poet and  Abolitionist John Greenleaf Whittier on December 17, 1807.
The Whittier Homestead is  an outstanding example of the old New England farm, located on its original  site, is substantially the same as when the Poet lived there in 1807 until 1836.  The homestead is the setting of his most famous and beloved poem Snow-Bound.  Many settings from his poems are recognizable to those who have read  them.
Outside still stand a  bridle-post where horses would be hitched, the natural stone mounting-block used  by generations of children, and the doorstone of which the “barefoot boy” ate  from his bowl of milk and bread.
The original barn, built in  1821 by John and Moses Whittier, the poet’s father and uncle, was burned in  1970. The present barn, of the same size and style, was moved from a nearby  location in 1971.
Fernside Brook still flows  along, and the path over the stepping stones to Job’s Hill, the site of the old  mill and the ancient family burial lot are to be found within 69 acres of the  present Homestead property. The surrounding land inspired Whittier to write such  poems as Fernside Brook, Telling the Bees, and the Barefoot Boy, with specific  locations so accurately described that they may still be readily identified  today.
The homestead was formally  opened in 1893 after former-Mayor James H. Carleton purchased the house and land  and presented it to the Haverhill Whittier Club. The club established a Board of  Trustees which to this day holds the deed in trust, with the intent and  obligation that the house and grounds be maintained for visitors that the love  and memory of Whittier might forever be cherished.

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December 23 2010
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"Fun with the Family"

Home of famous poet John Greenleaf Whittier. The Haverhill Public Library has a comprehensive collection of material about Whittier, his work, books, letters, and manuscripts.

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