Built in 1859, the house was the home of Fred Holland Day, the only son of Lewis and Anna Smith Day. The Smith and Day families were both prominent in the tanning industry that flourished in 19th century South Dedham/Norwood. Fred Holland Day, a noted photographer, publisher, historian and philanthropist, lived in the house until the time of his death in 1933.
Originally built in the Second Empire style, the family completely renovated the house in the early 1890s. The design for a grand Tudor style was executed by Boston Architect J. Williams Beal. With Fred Holland Day playing a leading role in the innovative design, the interior is an assimilation of Victorian and Arts & Crafts influences. The house contains eight fireplaces, many uniquely designed rooms, second and third floor balconies overlooking a central Great Hall and beautiful oak and mahogany paneling and woodwork. Original paintwork, fabric wall coverings, carpets, period light fixtures and Day family possessions can be found throughout the house.
Today, the historic F. Holland Day House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and serves as the headquarters for the non-profit Norwood Historical Society. Usually, the house is open for Sunday tours April through July, but we are currently closed to maintain safety during the coronavirus crisis. We are working on a virtual tour of the Day House, so please check back for photos and video.
We are still taking requests for tours of the Day House or to access our collections for research. Please visit our contact page to discuss possibilities. Please note that tours are $5 per person, or free for Norwood Historical Society members.