Surrounded by wetlands and the Charles River, Millis’ good soil and plentiful water set the stage for farm development in the early 18th century. The population of Millis remained primarily a community of scattered farms, while industry consisted of small mills and the Holbrook Bell Foundry and Pipe Organ Factory.
In 1880, Lansing Millis purchased Oak Grove Farm and turned it into a commercial enterprise consisting of dairy farms and stores with outlets in Boston. Four years later, Lansing Millis, Henry LaCroix, and Henry Millis founded the Clicquot Club Ginger Ale and Extracts Company; Herman Shoe Company and Metal Edge Factory were established soon after. Each of these companies took advantage of the area’s ample sources of water and built on sites next to the newly established railroad for easier shipping.
A thriving hotel business, referred to as the “Borscht Circuit,” was established in 1898 and remained in business until World War II. The hotels and industries are now gone, but it is evident in the collection of vintage images in Millis that the community has retained its small-town character and bucolic settings.
Join the Authors for a Book Signing!
When: Wednesday, June 6 at 7:00 p.m.
Where: Millis Public Library
25 Auburn Road, Millis, MA 02054
~Hosted by the Friends of the Library~
Charles Vecchi and Elizabeth Krimmel have been involved in local history for many years. They have drawn upon the best photographs from private collections and the Millis Historical Society.
Available at area bookstores, independent retailers, and online retailers, or through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com or
Arcadia Publishing is the leading publisher of local and regional history in the United States. Our mission is to make history accessible and meaningful through the publication of books on the heritage of America’s people and places. Have we done a book on your town? Visit www.arcadiapublishing.com.