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STOCKBRIDGE

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V25, Page 930 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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STOCKBRIDGE, a township of Berkshire county, in western Massachusetts, U.S.A. Pop. (1900), 208r; (191o, U.S. census) 1933. It comprises an area of 24 sq. m. Lake Mahkeenac, or Stockbridge Bowl, is about 2 M. north of Stockbridge village. Immediately south of the village, in a cleft in the north-western part of Bear Mountain, is Ice Glen, with caverns ice-lined even in midsummer. In the southern part of the township, on the bcundary of Great Barrington, is Monument Mountain (1710 ft.). Stockbridge village is on the Housatonic river, about 13 M. south by east of Pittsfield, and is served by the New York, New Haven & Hartford railway, and by an interurban electric line. It is well known as a summer resort, with a casino and golf links, a war monument, a bell tower erected by David Dudley Field to commemorate the Indian mission, a monument in the old burial ground of the Stockbridge Indians, a public library, and the Stockbridge Academy. Jonathan Edwards (commemorated by a monument, 1871) was the pastor (1750–1758), and wrote his Freedom of the Will here; the Sedgwick mansion, the home of Theodore Sedgwick (1746–1813), is at Stockbridge; his daughter, the author, Catherine M. Sedgwick, was born (aid buried) here; and Stockbridge was the birthplace of Mark Hopkins and of Cyrus W. Field, who presented a park to the village. The " village improvement society " movement seems to have originated at Stockbridge in 1853. The Stockbridge (or Muh-he-kan-ne-ok) Indians, survivors of the Mohican tribe, removed to the Housatonic Valley from the west bank of the Hudson river soon after the first white settlements were made in New York; and in 1734 a mission was established among them in what is now the township of Great Barrington by John Sergeant (1710–1749), who translated part of the Bible into their language. In 1736 a town 6 m. square (including the present Stockbridge) was laid out for them. Lands were held in severalty, the Indians were guaranteed the civil rights of whites; they had a church (under the charge of Jonathan Edwards in 1750–1758), and a school. In 1739 their township was incorporated under the name of Stockbridge, possibly adopted because of a resemblance to the country about Stockbridge, England. Many of the Indians fought on the American side in the War of Independence. In 1783–1788 nearly all of them removed to the Brother-ton settlement (established 1775), 14 M. south of what is now Utica, New York; there they built New Stockbridge. By 1829 nearly all had left New York for Wisconsin, settling near what is now South Kaukauna. By 1859 they had removed to II the reservation in Shawano county, Wisconsin, where they now live. See E. F. Jones, Stockbridge Past and Present (Springfield, 1854); and J. N. Davidson, Muhhekaneok: a History of the Stockbridge Indians (Milwaukee, 1863).
End of Article: STOCKBRIDGE
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