Arrowhead Museum (Herman Melville House)
Arrowhead has been designated a National Historic Landmark in 1962, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1966.
Arrowhead in the 1860s
Sketch of Arrowhead estate by Melville, c. 1860
Herman Melville, a novelist, writer of short stories, and poet from the American Renaissance period.
Backstory and Context
Arrowhead, wood frame and clapboard house, once a residence of Melville and his family, located at 780 Holmes Road in Pittsfield, was built in the 1780s by Captain David Bush, and was apparently used as an inn. Melville purchased the property in 1850. In 1863, after twelve years working on his novels (1863), he sold the house to his brother and moved to New York.
Today the house is a house museum which interprets the period when Melville and his family lived there, and also the history of Berkshire County. Arrowhead remained the property of the Melville family until 1927, and continued to be used as a private residence until February, 1975, when it was acquired by a non-profit corporation, the Berkshire County Historical Society.