OUR HISTORIC CAMPUS
Our Historic Campus
Buxton Hollow Farm’s sustainable farming roots date back to the 18th century when it supplied food and lumber for the first mill community in the U.S. in nearby Slatersville. The Buxton family had moved to what is now North Smithfield in 1707 from Salem at the height of the witch trials after their pastor Roger Williams, the founder of Rhode Island, recommended it as a safe place to practice their Quaker religion free from persecution. Notable Buxtons include Revolutionary War hero James and his son, Anthony, who was an early champion for what eventually would become child labor laws.
Today, Buxton Hollow remains true to its sustainable farming origins as a leading producer of organic compost products and the campus for the nonprofit Center for Sustainable Organic Agriculture. The heart of our leafy, 27-acre farm located alongside the Branch River will be a hub of lecture halls, field labs, and hydroponic and aquaponics gardens housed in five greenhouses circling a large solar-powered, geothermal-heated geodesic dome. For hundreds of years the Buxton family fed an entire community using sustainable farming techniques and today our students are carrying on that tradition.