The Willard Memorial (1934) commemorates Major Simon Willard’s Nonacoicus Farm. The southern boundary of the farm forms the border between the towns of Ayer and Harvard.
This farm was part of a grant of five hundred (500) acres, in 1657, from the Massachusetts General Court, for past military service and in settlement of a debt owed him by a Native American trader.
Willard was the chief officer of “Willard’s Dragoons” of the Militia of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, the first organized military force in central Massachusetts. This cavalry played a vital part in settling and defending the towns of Concord, Lancaster and Groton.
Willard’s home (1671) was just north of Robbins Pond. In 1676, it was destroyed, by Indians, while he was away.
The memorial was erected, by the Willard Family Association, to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the Willard family’s arrival in America.
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