Friday, October 12, 2012

Mohican Influence on Great Barrington

As I research my family I find more and more evidence of Mohican people who remained in the homeland, married, had families and became an important part of the community.  My great-grandfather Henry Winchell, his father John L. Winchell, his brothers Daniel and Robert Winchell and his cousin Nathaniel Warner were all carpenters.  In addition, Henry’s uncles Isaac Strong and Uriah Surriner were also Native and also carpenters.  They all lived in the town of Great Barrington, Berkshire County, Massachusetts.  Although the central fire of the Mohican Nation had moved and for the most part the ways of the ancestors had been forgotten, the Mohicans still continued to literally shape Berkshire County society through its descendants.  Did the residents know their homes and businesses were built by them?

Henry F. Winchell
 Here is a photo taken from A History of Searles Castle in Great Barrington, Massachusetts: The Great Wigwam written by the late Lila S. Parrish:

 

 Here is a photo of the constructed building, Searles Castle,from CNBC no less.  The Castle was an ostentatious anachronism in the New England village of Great Barrington.  As I have always approached it from the west, its location seemed to dominate the entry into downtown.  In a way, it dominated my perception of it, too, and now I know why.


Searles Castle, Great Barrington, Mass.

 Below is another photo showing one view of the marvelous woodwork inside, supporting my theory that multiple carpenters would've been needed during the construction.


I've never been able to see the interior myself.

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