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♦Welcome to the Bidwell House Museum♦

The museum is open for tours Thursdays through Mondays from 11 a.m to 4 p.m. Tours are on the hour, with the last tour beginning at 3 p.m. (Directions)

The grounds are open daily from dawn until dusk for hiking and nature watching. The Bidwell House is located on a country lane in the rural town of Monterey in the southern Berkshires of Massachusetts. Please explore our website: read about the colonial history of the region, plan to attend Season Events, learn about School Programs, discover fun volunteer opportunities, and much more.

Upcoming Events:

October 5th, 2 p.m.

Bidwell House to Steadman Pond Hike

On Sunday, October 5th, at 2 p.m. the Bidwell House Museum and the Monterey Preservation Land Trust are offering a guided walk in search of old roads, walls and cellar holes on the Berkshire Natural Resources Council’s Hudson-Howard property and Monterey Preservation Land Trust lands.  Rob Hoogs, President of the Bidwell House Museum, and Adam Brown of the Monterey Preservation Land Trust will lead the group from the site of the first center of the 1700s settlement of Township No. 1, today’s Tyringham and Monterey, toward Steadman Pond. The hike will follow old roadways, past foundations and stone walls of long-ago homesteads, to a lookout point above the Pond.
To join the hike, meet at the Bidwell House Museum at 2 p.m. Please dress for the weather and wear hiking boots/sturdy footwear, as terrain is steep and rocky in places. Bring a drink/snack. The walk is 2-3 miles—ca. 2 hours. NOTE—The walk does not include a tour of the house interior. Presented in cooperation with Housatonic Heritage. Free.

 

A Walk and Talk Exploring the Old Art School Grounds

On Saturday, October 11th, at 10 a.m. the Bidwell House Museum is offering a guided walk on the grounds of the former Berkshire Summer School of Art in Monterey. The walk will be led by Rob Hoogs, President of the Bidwell House Museum, and local historian. Between 1915 and 1936 the “Berkshire Summer School of Art” brought hundreds of artists to a camp in Monterey. This is a special opportunity to see this private property. Please dress for the weather and terrain and bring water. Meet at the museum.

From the 1916 Berkshire Summer School of Art brochure:

“Standing on the crest of a rock-ledged hilltop, one looks over a valley of color.”

“600 acres of as fine a bit of country as may be found in the Berkshire Hills.”

The summer art school, situated atop a hillside of the Beartown Mountain ridge, was part of the Bidwell House Museum property in the early 20th century. From 1915 to 1936 — the height of the Arts and Crafts and Plein Air movements — distinguished artists and art faculty from Pratt Institute, the Chicago Institute of Art and other prestigious schools taught landscape painting, pencil sketching, design, interior decoration, nature study, and more on these grounds. Students stayed in 45 small bungalow tents set up in “villages” and gathered for lessons and socializing in Carrington Hall.  The school was founded by Pratt faculty members Raymond P. Ensign and Ernest W. Watson. The property of the former Berkshire Summer School of Art is now a private estate. Historic Carrington Hall is still standing, and will be toured along with other features of the camp and the grounds that inspired a generation of artists.

For more information, please contact the Bidwell House Museum, 100 Art School Road, Monterey. 413-528-6888.

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Board Member John Demos’ new book, The Heathen School, A Story of Hope and Betrayal in the Age of the Early Republic, was recently reviewed by Maureen Corrigan on NPR. You can listen to that review here.

Also, click here to listen to John Demos discuss his book with Frank Sesno of NPR affiliate WAMU.

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Thank you….

….for supporting the Bidwell House Museum at the Berkshire Summer Art School Garden Party! Take a look at the story and photos on Rural Intelligence….

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♦EVENTS♦

Take a look at the calendar of 2014 Programs, click here

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Thank you for supporting the Bidwell House Museum. Your generosity allows the museum to thrive, and you are helping to protect the 1750s homestead and 192 acres of open space. Take a look at the story and photos of the Colonial Thanksgiving Party on Rural Intelligence.

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 Enjoy the new interpretive trail:

The Historic Berkshires: An 18th Century Trail

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Take a look at the 7-31-12 Berkshire Eagle article about a 2012 intern project:

“Cracking the Code: Young History Scholar Deciphers 1759 Sermon”

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To learn more about the forest management initiative
at the museum, please click here.
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