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Tyringham, Massachusetts  01264

Housatonic Township No. 1 was laid out by a committee of Proprietors in July, 1737. It encompassed what is today Tyringham and Monterey. In 1739 John Brewer built a sawmill in what is today Monterey Village. The original center was located around the Village of Monterey (incorporated as a separate town in 1847). The location of the Meeting House there displeased the people who had settled at Hop Brook Village, present-day Tyringham.

So, in 1779 another church was built, in or near the present Tyringham Cemetery. The present Union Church, a classic Greek Revival building, dates from 1844. The town was incorporated in 1762. Today it covers 18.9 square miles and has a population of just over 300.

The Hancock Shaker settlement is extremely well known, yet another impressive Shaker settlement existed along the southwestern headwall of Tyringham Valley. It was known as Jerusalem, and was established in 1792. At its zenith it contained over 200 Shakers housed in three clusters of buildings along Jerusalem Road. Today, five buildings survive at Fernside: the Kitchen and Dining Hall, Brothers' and Sisters' House, Elders' House, and the great Red Ox Barn. In the late 19th century Tyringham, like Stockbridge and Lenox, saw the construction of several large estates. Richard Watson Gilder, editor of Century Magazine, owned Four Brook Farms and Mr. Robb de Peyster Tytus, the Egyptologist, built Ashintully. Today it is a ruin. Henry H. Kitson, the sculptor, built the Witch House, a thatch-roofed English cottage for a studio. It is now Santarella.

Historic Preservation Report




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