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Hollis is a town in York Countymarker, Mainemarker, United Statesmarker. The population was 4,114 at the 2000 census. Hollis is a rural bedroom community of Portlandmarker and is part of the Portland–South PortlandmarkerBiddefordmarker, Maine Metropolitan Statistical Area.


Bonny Eagle Falls in 1869
The town of Hollis was originally called Little Falls Plantation, which also encompassed the towns of Daytonmarker and part of Limingtonmarker. It was bought in 1664 by Major William Phillips from Hobinowell and Mogg Hegon, sagamores of the local Abenaki Indian. In 1728, the Massachusetts General Court ordered that a combination trading post and stockaded blockhouse be constructed on the Saco Rivermarker to conduct trade with the Indians. It was made crudely of logs and equipped with a cannon. Ten men and a sergeant garrisoned it.

John and Andrew Gordon tried to settle the land in 1754, but were driven away by the Indians. On March 27, 1781, the first recorded plantation meeting took place and Joseph Chadbourne was elected moderator. By 1790 the population had grown to 607. The first vote for state office came in 1791, when Little Falls gave John Hancock 27 votes. In 1798, Little Falls was incorporated into Phillipsburg, named in honor of Major Phillips. The first town meeting took place on September 27, 1798, at the home of Stephen Hopkinson. The moderator was Joseph Chadbourne. In 1810 a committee was put together to rename the town, headed by Colonel Isaac Lane and Captain Eben Cleaves. It was finally decided upon the name Hollis. The reasoning behind the name is not known; it is thought to have been inspired by Hollismarker, New Hampshiremarker, or possibly by the Duke of Newcastle, whose family name was Holles.

Farmers grew corn, potatoes and hay in the sandy loam. Water powered mills were built along the Saco Rivermarker at Hollis village, Bar Mills, Moderation Falls (opposite West Buxtonmarker), North Hollis and Bonny Eagle Falls. These included lumber mills, a spool factory, a woodturning mill, a wooden box factory and the Saco River Woolen Company. The Portland and Rochester Railroad crossed the southern part of the town.

Notable residents

Kate Douglas Wiggin's home


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 32.9 square miles (85.3 km²), of which, 32.0 square miles (82.9 km²) of it is land and 0.9 square miles (2.4 km²) of it (2.79%) is water. Hollis is drained by Cook's Brook and the Saco Rivermarker.

Hollis borders the towns of Limingtonmarker and Standishmarker to the north, Buxtonmarker to the east, Daytonmarker to the south, Lymanmarker to the southeast and Waterboromarker to its west.


As of the census of 2000, there were 4,114 people, 1,507 households, and 1,139 families residing in the town. The population density was 128.5 people per square mile (49.6/km²). There were 1,592 housing units at an average density of 49.7/sq mi (19.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.81% White, 0.15% African American, 0.12% Native American, 0.15% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 0.07% from other races, and 0.61% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.53% of the population.

There were 1,507 households out of which 38.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.7% were married couples living together, 8.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.4% were non-families. 16.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.73 and the average family size was 3.06.

In the town the population was spread out with 26.8% under the age of 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 32.7% from 25 to 44, 25.1% from 45 to 64, and 7.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 98.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.1 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $48,846, and the median income for a family was $53,621. Males had a median income of $35,064 versus $25,510 for females. The per capita income for the town was $19,065. About 4.6% of families and 6.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.3% of those under age 18 and 10.6% of those age 65 or over.

Hollis in the present

Today with a population slightly above four thousand and its proximity to Portlandmarker, Hollis is growing fast. Many residents commute to jobs in Portland, South Portlandmarker, Sacomarker, Biddefordmarker, and Sanfordmarker. The few large businesses in Hollis include Eagle Industries, a precision sheet metal shop that employs about 35 and is also the main sponsor of US FIRST Robotics Team BERT 133 from Bonny Eagle High Schoolmarker, and a bottling plant for Poland Spring Water. Many of the local businesses are family-run and well-established in the community.


Elementary students in Hollis attend Hollis Elementary School, while junior high and high school students attend Bonny Eagle Middle School and High School respectively. Hollis is located within Maine School Administrative District 6marker.


Further reading

  • History of Hollis, Maine (1886)
  • Jewett, Martin H. and Olive W. Hannaford, A History of Hollis, Maine: 1660-1976; Farmington, Maine: The Knowlton & McLeary Co., 1976

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