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INVENTORY FORM CONTINUATION SHEET Town Property Address <br /> LEXINGTON 627 MASS. AVENUE <br /> MASSACHUSETTS HISTORICAL COMMISSION Area(s) Form No. <br /> MASSACHUSETTS ARCHIVES BUILDING <br /> 220 MORRISSEY BOULEVARD 211 <br /> BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS 02125 <br /> ARCHITECTURAL SIGNIFICANCE: <br /> The house at 627 Massachusetts Avenue is a unique structure, constructed c.1800 in the Federal style with brick ends and <br /> center entrance but renovated into a Greek Revival temple-form dwelling in 1839 by carpenter Curtis Capell. The broad <br /> triangular pediment extends the full width of the facade and projects forward, supported by four,two-story fluted Ionic <br /> columns. The shafts were constructed in Lexington but the capitals were carved in Boston. The front windows were <br /> apparently extended at the same time(Piper: 117). The door surround appears to be based on Plate XXVI of Asher <br /> Benjamin's pattern book, The Practice of Architecture,published in 1833 (Reinhardt: 34). It is one of a number of <br /> Asher Benjamin-inspired doorways which survive in East Lexington(see also 715, 782, 870, 884, 1106 Massachusetts <br /> Avenue). <br /> HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE: <br /> The house at 627 Massachusetts Avenue was constructed about 1803 by Obadiah Parker,the proprietor of a private <br /> school on Pleasant Street. Parker left town due to financial difficulties c.1804 and the house was reportedly never <br /> occupied until it was purchased by N.Ambrose Morrell, a French emigrant who came to Lexington before 1798 and was <br /> engaged in the fur dressing business. He married Sally Holbrook in January 7, 1805 and they began their residence here <br /> on their wedding day. The couple had five daughters. Elizabeth married Otis Dana in 1836 at Follen Church. Another <br /> daughter, Sarah, married Abraham Millet in 1838. The house was renovated in 1839 and the changes to the house and <br /> the laying out of the garden were planned by Sarah Millet(Piper: 117). Curtis Cappell was the carpenter in charge of the <br /> work. <br /> In 1880 the house was owned and occupied by Otis and Elizabeth Dana,their daughter Ellen, and Elizabeth's sister, <br /> Sarah Millet. After Otis' death,Ellen Dana continued to live here with her mother and later,with servants. When Miss <br /> Dana died in 1913 the house and the remainder of her estate were left to the Lexington Home for Aged People which was <br /> incorporated in 1905. The house was sold in 1916 and the proceeds helped fund the purchase of 2027 Massachusetts <br /> Avenue for"The Dana Home". <br /> BIBLIOGRAPHY: <br /> Hudson, Charles. History of the Town of Lexington. <br /> Lexington Directories, various dates. <br /> Lexington Minute-man,March 18, 1892. <br /> Middlesex County Register of Deeds, Cambridge,Mass. <br /> Piper,Fred Smith. "Architectural Yesterdays in Lexington,"Proceedings of the Lexington Historical Society,vol. IV, <br /> 1912, p. 117. <br /> Reinhardt, Elizabeth and Anne A. Grady. "Asher Benjamin in East Lexington,Massachusetts", Old-Time New England, <br /> vol. LXVII, nos. 3-4, Winter-Spring 1977,pp. 34-35. <br /> Worthen, Edwin B. Tracing the Past in Lexington, Massachusetts. New York: Vantage Press, 1998. <br /> Supplement prepared by: <br /> Lisa Mausolf <br /> June 2009 <br />