Berkshires and Pioneer Valley welcome guests to historic homes and sites
88 Old Main Street
Deerfield, MA, 01342
Located in western Massachusetts off Routes 5 and 10 in the 330-year old village of Deerfield, the museum has been called the gem of rural New England. It includes 12 houses dating to the 18th and 19th centuries and three exhibition galleries at the Flynt Center of Early New England Life. Guided and self-guided tours are offered. A full calendar of programs, special events, and village walking tours are offered throughout the year. The Museum Store and Bookshop feature gifts, museum reproductions and books about early America and the decorative arts.
Hours: Open Daily, year round; hours vary by season. Call ahead or counsult website.
Admission: Adults, $12; youth age 6-17, $5.
The Mount is a historic site and a center for culture inspired by the achievements of Edith Wharton. Designed by Wharton in 1902, the house embodies the principles outlined in her influential book, The Decoration of Houses (1897). The property includes three acres of formal gardens surrounded by extensive woodlands. Programming at The Mount reflects Wharton’s core interests in the literary arts, interior design and decoration, garden and landscape design, and the art of living.
Hours: Grounds open year-round; house, stable, and bookstore open daily from early May to October 31.
Admission: Adults, $16; students, $13; grounds pass, $12; guided tour, $2; free for youth under age 18.
Emily Dickinson House
280 Main Street
The Emily Dickinson Museum includes The Homestead, where Emily Dickinson lived most of her life, and The Evergreens, another family residence. The two houses share three acres of the family property. Tours are offered.
Hours: Open year-round except January and February, daily except MOnday and Tuesday. Winter hours usually 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; summer hours usually 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Open Mondays in the summer.
Admission: Adults, $12; seniors, $11; college students, $6; youth age 6-17, $6; children under age 6, free.
Art School Road
Monterey, MA, 01245
The Bidwell House (1750)was built as the parsonage. Surrounding the house are terraced stone walls of perennial beds. The remaining acreage is woodlands laced with hiking trails and foot paths leading to historical landmarks throughout the property. The Kitchen Garden demonstrates the early colonial style and variety of plants and 19th-century Shaker vegetable gardening.
Hours: Memorial Day-Columbus Day, Thursday through Monday (closed Tuedays and Wednesdays), 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with tours on the hour. The last tour starts at 3 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $10; seniors, $8; students, $5; children under age 6, free.
1 Armory Square
This National Historic Landmark houses the world’s largest collection of American military firearms dating from colonial times and offers year-round public programs, exhibits, and special events.
Hours: Daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Free admission.
19 Main St.
Stockbridge, MA, 01262
Built in 1739 and atop Prospect Hill, this National Historic Landmark was moved, and restored in 1926-27. Landscape architect Fletcher Steele designed the Colonial Revival garden, which features a Colonial-style dooryard garden. A replica of an old cobbler shop is the entrance to the property; a grape arbor in the Well Courtyard behind the house leads to a Native American museum.
Hours: Memorial Day weekend to Columbus Day, daily, 10 a.m.- to 5 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $6; children, free.
238 Cabot Street
Holyoke, MA, 01040
Twenty-six-room Beaux Arts mansion of silk manufacturer William Skinner featuring many outstanding architectural details and a house tour that weaves the tale of the people who lived and worked there. Dinosaur footprints and gardens.
Hours: Saturday, Sunday, Monday, noon-4 p.m. The gardens & grounds are open daily until dusk.
Admission: Adults, $7; students and seniors,$5; children age 12 and younger, free.
Route 2, along the Mohawk Trail
The museum offers visitors a variety of shops, offices, and exhibits recreating a New England town as it appeared in 1895. Attention has been paid to every detail, including shopkeepers' original goods, signs and display items.
Hours: May 15 through October 15, Saturdays and holidays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Admission: Adults,$5; seniors, $4; youth age 6-16, $3.
780 Holmes Road
Truly a literary historic site, Herman Melville wrote Moby-Dick and several other works in this house. Tours are available. Open seasonally.
Hours: Memorial Day to Columbus Day, open daily, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m.; hourly tours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission: Tours are adults, $13; children and students, $8.
Site of the first Christian mission to the Native Americans in the area. The structure is set on 350 acres, featuring stained class, murals, and wood carvings.
Prospect Hill Road
Stockbridge, MA, 01262
This 44-room house was the summer cottage of the Choate family, and features original furniture, ceramics, and artwork collected from America, Europe, and the Far East. Famous for its eight acres of terraced gardens and landscaped grounds that include the afternoon garden, rose garden, evergreen garden, Chinese garden, arborvitae walk, and linden walk. Steele’s Blue Steps is a series of deep blue fountain pools flanked by four flights of stairs overhung by birch trees.
Hours: Memorial Day to Columbus Day, daily, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Allow a minimum of one hour for the garden and two hours if also taking house tour.
Admission: Adults, $15; children, free.
Williamsville Road, one mile south of Routes 183 and 102
Stockbridge, MA, 01262
Chesterwood is the country home, studio, and gardens of America’s foremost sculptor of public monuments, Daniel Chester French (1850-1931), creator of the Minute Man and Abraham Lincoln for the Lincoln Memorial. It is situated on 122 acres in the idyllic hamlet of Glendale near Stockbridge. Many plaster sketches, including models of his Abraham Lincoln for the Lincoln Memorial, are on view today in his studio as well as in the permanent exhibit in Barn Gallery.
Hours: Late May-early October, daily, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Admission: Adults, $16; children age 13-17, $8
67 East Road
Susan B. Anthony was born in Adams on February 15, 1820. Her Federal-style home built in 1818, stands as an important symbol of the women’s suffrage movement. The museum highlights the familial and regional influences that shaped Ms. Anthony’s early life.
Admission: Adults, $6; seniors, $4; students, $3; children age 6 and younger, free. Call to arrange private tours.
William Cullen Bryant Homestead
207 Bryant Road
Cummington, MA, 01027
Boyhood home of one of America's foremost 19th-century poets, the William Cullen Bryant Homestead is a National Historic Landmark. Although Bryant moved to New York City to become editor and publisher of The New York Evening Post, the Homestead became Bryant’s summer retreat in his later years. The house collection includes colonial and Victorian pieces from Europe and Asia.
Hours: Grounds, year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset; access to the house varies; please call for more information.
Admission: Grounds, free.
Memorial Hall Museum
8 Memorial Street
Deerfield, MA, 01342
Occupying a building originally constructed in 1798 for Deerfield Academy, Memorial Hall Museum holds over 31,000 items and includes the Old Deerfield Children's Museum, offering family activities in a reproduction of a 1690s house. Exhibits focus on the life and world of an agricultural economy from the earliest Native Americans to the arrival of Europeans.
Hours: May 1-October 30; call ahead or consult website for hours.
Admission: Adults, $6; youth and students 6-21, $3.