Herman Melville, author of the American classic Moby-Dick (among others), spent his early childhood in the high society of New York City and his adolescence living less affluently in Albany, NY. His first visit to the farm in Pittsfield that was purchased by his grandfather was in 1832, when Herman Melville was just thirteen. His reaction was immediate and strong – he loved the farm and the land on which it stood.
The beauty of the Berkshires, particularly the view of Mount Greylock from the family farm, eventually inspired Melville to move to the region permanently. In 1850, he purchased a neighboring farm that enjoyed the same views of Mount Greylock and moved there with his wife and his young son. They named their homestead Arrowhead after the Native American arrowheads found in the fields, and resided in the 1783 farmhouse for thirteen years. Many of his finest works, including Moby-Dick, were penned in the second-floor library at Arrowhead.
Arrowhead remained in the Melville family until 1927. It was purchased by the Berkshire Historical Society in 1975; restoration of the farm buildings began shortly thereafter, and continues to this day. Arrowhead houses an extensive collection of Melville manuscripts along with other items overseen by the Berkshire Historical Society.
Arrowhead is open to the public daily between Memorial Day and October, and for several special events throughout the year. One such event takes place this weekend and next weekend, February 12, 13 and February 18 – 20, 2011: the Candlelight and Chocolate Tours. This is a wonderful activity for guests of our luxury Berkshires Bed and Breakfast.
Tour Melville’s old farmhouse by candlelight, seeing the home at night as Melville would have seen it when he lived there. After the flickering tour, visit with the knowledgeable and friendly tour guide while tasting hand crafted chocolates. Then return to our nearby Berkshires Bed and Breakfast for a sniffer of brandy before bed.
The Candlelight and Chocolate Tour begins at 6:00 pm. For additional information, please see the Arrowhead website. To book a room at our Massachusetts Bed and Breakfast, please see our reservations page.