History of the Bullard Farm

History of the Bullard Farm

The Bullard Farm was first settled by Benjamin Bullard in approximately 1652. The land was purchased from local Native Americans, and conveyed under the Keynes Grant and approved by the General Court in 1649. Originally the farm was known as the Bullard Colonial Farm, but is now known as The Bullard Memorial Farm. The earliest Bullards were direct descendants of John and Robert Bullard, emigrants from England in 1635. The land was cleared and farmed up to and including the first decade of the twentieth century. An extensive collection of the families papers can be found in the library of the 19th Century Historical Museum at Old Sturbridge Village in Sturbridge, Massachusetts.      

The Bullard family owned the Bullard Farm property from about 1652 until 1916, when John Anson Bullard, the last Bullard family member to individually own the Bullard Farm property, bequeathed it to the Bullard Memorial Farm Association (BMFA), which had been created in 1909.    

​There are nine buildings on site: a main house (1777/1794), a barn, a vinegar building, a cider building, a blacksmith shop, a library, a locker building, a small shed/horse barn, and a cottage. Approximately 100 acres of land is under a forestry and agricultural designation and the remaining 50 acres are undeveloped pasture. The property and land, as well as a historic cow tunnel, are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

 The Historic Cow Tunnel

When Central Street and Bullard Street were first built, they went through pastures that were used for raising livestock. Three stone-faced tunnels were built under these roads to allow the animals to move from pasture to pasture. A pig tunnel ran under Central Street, just west of its intersection with Bullard Lane. Two cow tunnels were also built, one under Central Street and the other under Bullard Street. The two tunnels under Central Street were later filled in by the city of Holliston. They feared that heavy traffic would cause the tunnels to collapse. The tunnel under Bullard Street is still open and passable. This remaining cow tunnel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.