An elegant example of a Georgian saltbox style construction, The Bidwell House was originally built in the mid 1700’s as a parsonage by the Reverend Adonijah Bidwell (1716-1784) and a visit here tells the story of the early settlement of the Berkshires.
Bidwell House was restored to it’s late 1700’s condition thanks to the hard work of two fashion designers from New York: Jack Hargis and David Brush. Purchasing the then decrepit house in 1960, they began the painstaking work of restoring it, assisted by the fortuitous discovery of an inventory of the Bidwell’s possessions at the time of his death.
Sitting on 192 acres, including the property’s original 60 acre plot, the Bidwell House Museum seems to be in the middle of nowhere. At the time of its construction, however, it was in the thick of things, located as it was near the busy intersection of Boston-Albany Post Road on Royal Hemlock Road, which connected the two settlements of Township No. 1.
Bidwell House Museum opened its doors in 1990, furnished with authentic 18th and early 19th century antiques and surrounded by terraced stone walls, lush varied gardens, and trails leading the way to historical landmarks and through woodlands on the property.
The Bidwell House Museum gardens include beds of bright perennials, an heirloom herb garden, and a Heritage Vegetable Garden representing the variety of vegetables found in a colonial gardens and 19th century Shaker style gardening. Remnants of an old orchard can also be seen on the acreage.
Visiting the Bidwell House Museum
Located in Monterey, Masachusettes, The Bidwell House Museum is open for hour-long, guided tours Thursday through Monday, 11am to 4pm. The grounds surrounding Bidwell House Museum are open daily from dawn until dusk for hiking and nature watching. Please visit bidwellhousemuseum.org for more information.
Southern Berkshire Lodging
Bidwell House Museum is less than half an hour from Applegate Inn Bed and Breakfast. Our convenient location makes exploring the Berkshires a snap. Applegate Inn sits on 6 park-like acres just a half mile from historic downtown Lee, Massachusetts. Treat yourself to the rejuvenating beauty of the Berkshires with a stay in one of our elegantly appointed rooms.