The Nathaniel Allen House
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places and a Newton landmark, the Nathaniel Allen House, built c.1844, was the home of Nathaniel Allen, one of the most progressive educators of his time. The building served for more than a century as part of a school founded by Allen and subsequently operated by his daughters. Allen’s educational model was highly enlightened, providing learning opportunities across gender, race, and ethnic origin, and promoting rigorous physical education and an appreciation for the arts.
In 2012, just as the house was about to be developed into condominiums, the Newton Cultural Alliance (NCA) purchased the property and began a careful process of planning for its future as a cultural center. Since then, funding has been secured from the Newton Community Preservation Program, Massachusetts Historical Rehabilitation Tax Credits, the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund, and private contributions. In 2016, the Junior League of Boston’s Designer Show House was hosted at the Nathaniel Allen house, resulting in significant upgrades to the physical property.
Our Plans for the Future
We seek to create a dynamic cultural center that honors the spirit of Nathaniel Allen as a progressive thinker, as an innovator, educator, and collaborator – a place where our entire community can gather to create, experience, learn, explore and celebrate.
Once complete, the Nathaniel Allen House will be a center for a broad range of innovative arts exploration across disciplines, among them:
Theatre performances – in a unique black box theatre space in the Allen House barn
Concerts and recitals – offered in several well-appointed spaces within the house and barn
Art exhibits – in and around the property, including parlors, the barn, and outdoors on the lawn
In addition, indoor and outdoor spaces will be made available for rent by the community for:
Educational and after-school programs
Lectures, classes, workshops and demonstrations
Private parties and events
Construction & Renovation Update
Phase 1 of construction and renovation to the Allen House is finished! Now, we are working on completing the restoration and outfitting the black box theatre. Follow us on social media and sign up for our e-newsletter for updates!
There are many ways you can help make the Nathaniel Allen House project a success:
Advocate for us in the community.
Connect us to potential funders for the project.
Make a gift to support our important mission!