Demolition of historic Charles Leeds House subject of upcoming hearing

  • This historic single-family home at 815 Main St. in the East Amherst village will be the subject of a demolition delay hearing this month. GOOGLE

Staff Writer
Published: 2/1/2023 2:40:46 PM

AMHERST — A historic single-family home in the East Amherst village will be the subject of a demolition delay hearing this month.

Kohl Construction is proposing the removal of what is commonly known as the Charles Leeds House, at 815 Main St.

Leeds was the architect and first resident of the Greek Revival home he built in 1836 on a half-acre parcel. The home, set less than 15 feet from the road, is already in dilapidated condition.

The Historical Commission hearing on allowing the razing of the home is set for Feb. 16 at 6:35 p.m. A second hearing will be for Kohl Construction’s planned removal of a 1920s-era detached garage at 98 Fearing St.

The Charles Leeds House is located in the town’s East Village historic district, which is also a National Historic District.

A property record held by the Massachusetts Historical Commission, completed by Louis Greenbaum for the town’s Historical Commission in 1981, shows that the house was occupied by a painter, Jeremy M. Goodell, around 1842, and then a physician, Dr. Timothy A. Gridley, around 1845.

“It had been sold at a ‘public venue’ on May 16, 1840 for $75.00. It was lived in by a series of Amherst families — Cook, Harlow, Allen, Howard,” the record states.

The record also notes that the village was made of homes for the town’s industrial manufacturing in the 19th century.

The property has been owned by Ciba LLC of Belchertown and assessed at $179,700, according to town records, with almost all of the existing value in the land.

Scott Merzbach can be reached at
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