Journey back in time
at this Colonial-era house and museum, a National Historic Landmark
that tells the story of the Stockbridge Mohicans and John Sergeant,
first missionary to the Mohican Indians. It not only provides
a glimpse into Colonial history, but also the Native American
tribe that lived here.
In the mid-1730s, the Mohicans living in western Massachusetts
gave permission for a young minister to live among them. The Reverend
John Sergeant lived in a simple cabin until he married Abigail
Williams in 1739 and built the Mission House around 1742.
Originally located on Prospect Hill in Stockbridge, this National
Historic Landmark was carefully disassembled, moved, and restored
between 1926 and 1930 by Miss Mabel Choate (then owner of nearby
Naumkeag, which is now also a Trustees property) at its present
location on Main Street. From 1928 to 1933, noted landscape architect
Fletcher Steele designed the Colonial Revival garden, which features
a colonial-style dooryard garden of circular brick paths enclosed
by a cypress fence. A kitchen garden divided by crushed stone
walkways contains 100 herbs, perennials, and annuals that had
culinary or medicinal value to early colonists. A replica of an
old cobbler shop serves as the entrance to the property.
The house showcases an outstanding collection of 18th-century
American furniture and decorative arts. A grape arbor in the Well
Courtyard behind the Mission House leads to a small Native American
museum that tells the story of the Mohicans through artifacts
gathered by Mabel Choate in the early 1930s, as well as stories
and anecdotes from Mohicans today. The Mission House is owned
and managed by The Trustees of Reservations.
The grounds are open year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset; the
house is open seasonally for tours and for groups by advance reservation.
Allow a minimum of half an hour for the Indian Museum and Gardens,
plus 45 more minutes for the house tour, and 60 more minutes if
you’d like to explore the Quest along Main Street.