On the western border of Massachusetts sits an unassuming yellow farmhouse. Looking at this home, no one would guess one of the greatest American literary masterpieces was written here. Over the course of 18 months, Herman Melville penned Moby Dick while living at Arrowhead (aptly named for the rich number of arrowheads dug up on the property). From 1850 through 1863, Melville and his family called Arrowhead home, during which he used the inspiration of the house and its surrounding landscape to write other well-known novels and stories, such as Israel Potter and “Bartleby, the Scrivener.”
Join veteran Arrowhead tour guide John Dickson and Executive Director Lesley Herzberg for an enlightening program that provides an overview of Melville’s time at the home, as well as the evolution of the architectural features of the building from the 1780s to the present, some of which are referenced in Melville’s works. Herzberg also examines the agricultural landscape, where the entire Melville family participated in the cultivation of the 160-acre farm and gardens in the 19th century.
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