5. LilliHouse (930 West Main Street)
LilliHouse has strong ties to Franklin’s leading industry in the early 1900s. Lillie Mills provided flour and cornmeal nationwide, producing the top-selling brand “Franklin Lady Flour.” The mill’s founder, Joshua Bates Lillie, built LilliHouse circa 1894, setting it apart with a fanciful turreted bay window and circular porch. The home includes two large dining rooms, and the main dining room features a Waterford crystal chandelier that originally graced the British consulate in Bombay.
Touches of history can be found all throughout the home. An original Lillie Mills feed sack hangs in the kitchen, and in one of the dining rooms, a handwritten note is framed—a message that was discovered beneath some old wallpaper, commemorating the first dinner in the house on April 10, 1895, along with the names “John, Mabel, and Lillie Jo.”
WHY I LOVE THIS HOUSE:
The whimsical style of LilliHouse speaks to my inner little girl who adores fairy tales, turrets, and all things princess. The home looks like it should be tucked away in some magical forest where fairies and gnomes frolic among the trees.
LilliHouse is also dear to my heart because my children thrill over the home’s elaborate holiday decorations each year. For Halloween, the owners transform their detached garage into a fun and spooky haunted house. It’s a must-see for adults and kids alike.