LENOX MA REAL ESTATE HOUSES LAND
Lenox MA Real Estate includes the Town of Lenox which is irregularly shaped and bordered by Pittsfield to the north, Washington to the east, Lee to the southeast, Stockbridge to the southwest, and Richmond to the west. The town center is 8 miles (13 km) south of downtown Pittsfield, 45 miles (72 km) west-northwest of Springfield, and 125 miles (201 km) west of Boston. The population was 5,025 at the 2010 census. Lenox is the site of Tanglewood, summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Lenox includes the villages of New Lenox and Lenoxdale, and is a tourist destination during the summer.
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Lenox MA Real Estate
Lenox is set apart from Richmond to the west by a branch of the Berkshire Mountains, with the highest peak in the ridge being Yokun Seat at 2,124 ft (647.4 m). To the east, October Mountain rises above the Housatonic River, which flows along that side of town.
Hostilities during the French and Indian Wars discouraged settlement until 1750, when Jonathan and Sarah Hinsdale from Hartford, Connecticut established a small inn and general store. The Province of Massachusetts Bay thereupon auctioned large tracts of land for 10 townships in Berkshire County, set off in 1761 from Hampshire County.
Early industries included farming, sawmills, textile mills, potash production, glassworks, and quarrying. A vein of iron ore led to the digging of mines under the town, and the establishment by Job Gilbert in the 1780s of an iron works at Lenox Dale, also known as Lenox Furnace.
Lenox MA Real Estate
The region’s rustic beauty helped Lenox develop into an art colony. After an extension of the Housatonic Railroad arrived in 1838, tourists discovered the town in increasing numbers. The period from 1880 until 1920 would be dubbed the Berkshire Cottage era, when the small New England town was transformed into a Gilded Age resort similar to Newport, Rhode Island and Bar Harbor, Maine. The wealthy and their entourage opened immense houses for recreation and entertaining during the Berkshire Season, which lasted from late summer until early fall. Property values jumped as millionaires competed for land on which to build showplaces. In 1903, an acre in Lenox cost $20,000, when an acre in nearby towns cost a few dollars.
The imposition of the Federal income tax in 1913 ended construction of the country mansions in the Berkshires. The estates started to break up during the 1920s. After WWII, some of the estates were torn or burned down. Others became schools or seminaries. Some estates became preparatory schools, although they would close by the 1970s and 1980s.
The Shadowbrook property is now the Kripalu yoga center; another, The Mount, is the former home of Shakespeare & Company. Some have been converted into vacation condominiums. Tanglewood, the former estate of the Tappan family which lies partially in Stockbridge, would in 1937 become summer home to the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Lenox remains a popular tourist destination.