Original Site of The Redstone Schoolhouse

Sterling, Massachusetts
The Original Site of The Redstone Schoolhouse that inspired “Mary Had a Little Lamb” can be found in Sterling, Massachusetts.
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About This Location

The Original Site of The Redstone Schoolhouse can be found in Sterling, Massachusetts. This location claims a connection to the timeless nursery rhyme, “Mary Had a Little Lamb.” Constructed in the late 1700s, the original quaint one-room schoolhouse served as a beacon of education from 1798 until 1927, when it closed its doors for the first time.

The schoolhouse derives its name not from its color, but from its original location atop Redstone Hill in Sterling. Despite its small stature, it played a significant role in shaping the minds of local children for nearly a century.

In a bid to preserve its rich history, the entire structure was painstakingly relocated approximately 20 miles away to Sudbury. Here, it found new life under the stewardship of Henry Ford, who integrated it into his Wayside Inn historic district. Reopened in 1927, the school once again echoed with the laughter and learning of young students, teaching grades 1 through 4.

It was during its tenure in Sterling that the school allegedly became entwined with the famous nursery rhyme, purportedly inspired by a local resident named Mary Elizabeth Sawyer. Legend has it that Mary, at the suggestion of her brother, brought her pet lamb to school, sparking the whimsical tale immortalized in verse.

Today, the Redstone Schoolhouse stands as a cherished piece of history, offering visitors a glimpse into the bygone era of education. Preserved and open for tours, it provides a tangible link to the past, allowing guests to imagine the bustling classrooms of yesteryear. However, one rule remains unchanged: no lambs are allowed within its hallowed halls. The Original Site of The Redstone Schoolhouse can be found in Sterling, Massachusetts at the intersection of Redstone Hill Road and Rugg Road. It is marked with a plaque that reads, “Mary Had a Little Lamb. Site of Original School House Attended by Mary Sawyer.”


Address: Rugg Road, Sterling, Massachusetts
Place GPS Coordinates: 42.439280, -71.733840
Parking GPS Coordinates: 42.439280, -71.733840
Parking Notes: Visitors can park right in front of the site along Rugg Road. Parking is free.

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