This floating castle appears to be from an enchanted fable, but in actuality it is Europe's best preserved Renaissance water castle.
With its red trim, white siding and slate blue roof tiles, the Dwight House in Historic Deerfield, Massachusetts evokes a distinctly traditional and patriotic American aesthetic despite being constructed during a turbulent time when the land was still a frontier of the English colonies.
Built around 1754, the House was originally located in Springfield, Massachusetts and first owned by Colonel Josiah Dwight. Surprsingly the House has endured many relocations. First constructed on Main Street, the House was moved to Howard Street and used as a tenement near the turn of the century. When developers threatened to demolish the House in 1950, it was dismantled and moved to Historic Deerfield where it stands today.
Founded by Henry and Helen Flynt, Historic Deerfield is a museum that aims to preserve the heritage and history of Deerfield. Eleven historic house museums are open for exploration to the public. Visitors will learn about the lifestyles and culture of early colonial New England.
Despite its colonial charm, Deerfield’s early history was mired in conflict. English settlers arrived in the area in 1669, but they were far from the first inhabitants. The Pocumtucks and Mohawk Native American tribes had lived in the region for generations; and as their civilizations encountered colonialism, foreign disease, and clashes with neighboring tribes, colonial Deerfield also found itself under attack from both the French and Indians.
After countless raids, wars, and a Revolution – wherein the Massachusetts colony would become part of the U.S. – Deerfield remains a reminder of the country’s early beginnings. Today, the Dwight House continues to provide a glimpse into the hardy lifestyle of early Americans and their many historic trades and conflicts.
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