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Village Profile: Chestnut Hill

Chestnut Hill

Newton, MA

Chestnut Hill Reservoir
Chestnut Hill Reservoir

Chestnut Hill is a village of Newton located six miles west of downtown Boston. It encompasses parts of three separate municipalities: Brookline, Boston and newton. it is named after several small hills overlooking the 135-acre Chestnut Hill Reservoir. It is best known as the home of Boston College, a part of the Boston Marathon route and Collegiate Gothic canvas of landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted.

Most of Chestnut Hill remained farmland well into the early twentieth century but in 1870, Olmsted devloped the area around the reservoir.

$2.6 million - Chestnut Hill - click here for more

$2.2 million - Chestnut Hill - click here for more

Because of the significance of its landscape and architecture, designated parts of Chestnut Hill were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1986. Examples of colonial, Italianate, shingle, Tudor revival and Victorian architectural styles are present throughout the village. The Boston College campus itself is an early example of Collegiate Gothic architecture.

Chesnut Hill Waterworks

Hammon Pond Reservation - an extensive network of forest and wetland -  is also located in Chestnut Hill. Kennard Park and Conservation Area is also in Chestnut Hill. This post agricultural forest grew from 19th century farmland. The mixed and conifer woodlands reveal colonial stone walls, a red maple swamp with century-old trees and a sensitive fern marsh.

Chestnut Hill Mall - 1976

Chestnut Hill Reservoir - 1910

For more historic snapshots, check out The Newton Free Library - founded in 1870 as a free public library. Their unique collection depicts local Newton life primarily from the 19th to early 20th century when it was transforming from agricultural to industrial and becoming a popular Boston suburb. They have a wide range of historic items including photos, maps, voter lists, yearbooks, municipal directories and other things to "promote educational, cultural and recreational enrichment."

Here are some resources to help you explore Chestnut Hill with the click of a button:

To see the last village profile of Nonantum, click here