Hollis is situated in the north-west part of York County, and on the west side of the Saco River. The town of Buxton lies across the river on the east, Dayton bounds it on the south, Waterborough on the west, and Limington on the north. The town contains about 13,600 acres of land. The Portland and Rochester Railroad Iasses aeross the southern part. The station is at Hollis Centre, about 20 miles from Portland. The other centres of business are Hollis Village, on the Saco Rivers in the south-eastern part of the town; Bar Mills, a mile above ; Moderation, opposite West Buxton ; North Hollis, at the north-western angle of the town ; and Bonny Eagle Falls, on the Saco, at the North. At these points are lumber-mills, a spool-factory and turning-mill, wood-box factory, the Saco River Woollen Company, etc. Cook's Brook, which forms the southern line of the town, has two small saw-mills. A long sheet of water in the northwest part of the town called "Kelliock's Pond" is the only considerable body of water.
The surface of the town is not broken by any considerable eminences. Granite is the prevailing rock. The soil is about equally divided between clay and sandy loam. The principal crops are corn, potatoes and hay. Pine, oak and maple are the principal woods. A marked feature of the town is the water-powers that are found on all sides of it, furnishing employment to a large number of the inhabitants. These falls furnish some striking cascades and rapids, and along the river is much picturesque and beautiful scenery. The rocks along the river afford many traces of the glacial and drift periods.
Hollis was a part of the tract purchased by Small and Shapleigh of the Indians. Their trading house stood about ten miles above Saco River Lower Falls. The town was first known as a part of Little Falls Plantation, and settlements probably began along the Saco River within its limits in 1753. The township was incorporated under the name of Phillipsburg in 1798 ; and in 1811 the name was changed to Hollis. Dayton was taken from Hollis in 1854. In the war of 1812 a few men were drafted for the coast defense; and in the war of the Rebellion the town sent 108 men into service, paying $45,000 in bounties.
The town has religious societies and churches of the Methodists, Free Baptists, Christian Baptist and Advents. There are fourteen schoolhouses, valued at $4,000. In 1870 its estates were valued at $444,428. In 1880 at $418,761. The rate of taxation in 1880 was 21 mills on the dollar. Its population in 1870 was 1,541; and in 1880 it was 1,542, an increase of one inhabitant.
- George J. Varney, A Gazetteer of the State of Maine (Boston: B.B. Russell, 1886), 282-283.