The Trustees is pleased to announce that the birthplace of Lucy Stone, a prominent speaker for the rights of women and abolitionist who helped organize the first National Women’s Rights Convention in 1850, has been named to the National Register of Historic Places.
The National Register is the nation’s official listing of significant historic resources, with more than 70,000 properties listed in the National Register in Massachusetts. This application was submitted by Amy Dugas of the West Brookfield Historical Commission, with assistance from Trustees staff. Stone’s birthplace is part of The Trustees’ Rock House Reservation, which was home to her family’s farm.
Lucy Stone was born in a farmhouse on Coy Hill Road, in West Brookfield, on August 13, 1818, and the Lucy Stone Home Site consists of a series of foundations and other structures related to the farmstead established by Stone’s family.
She grew up at a time when women lacked legal and civil rights, and most personal rights were exercised at the consent of a male “head of family.” Inheriting a defiant nature from her grandfather, a leader in Shays’ Rebellion, Lucy spent her adult life promoting equal rights and full justice for all. Stone became the first woman in Massachusetts to earn a college degree at Oberlin College and to retain her maiden name after marriage.
Stone would go on to become a prominent speaker for the rights of women and against slavery, and she helped organize the first National Women’s Rights Convention in Worcester in 1850. Her last public speech urging women “to labor unceasingly” for equal rights was delivered six months before her death in 1893, at the age of 75.
Stone lived at the site for several decades, often returning to it even as she became a prominent social reformer traveling the country. The property remained in the family until 1936. The house and all its outbuildings burned down in 1950. The property has been owned by The Trustees since 2003.
Adjacent to Rock House Reservation, the property has been owned by The Trustees since 2003. “The Trustees is honored to work every day to preserve this important historical property,” said Jocelyn Forbush, Trustees Acting President & CEO. “We hope this recognition will shine a brighter light on Lucy’s story and her noteworthy place in history.”