Mohawk Tower Association collection
Scope and Contents
The Mohawk Tower Asssociation collection (1941-13-0) contains a variety of items related to the Mohawk Tower Association between the years 1882 and 1920. Photographs document the ruins of the original wood tower, the cabin on Mohawk Mountain, the consturction of the stone tower built by Seymour Cunningham, and various views of the surrounding area from the stone tower. Also included in the collection are several loose documents that include coorespondence dealing with the purchase of the tower by Seymour Cunningham, subscription lists, and minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Mohawk Tower Association in 1891. A bound record book contains meeting minutes of the association, names of subscribers to Mohawk Tower, financial accounts, the Articles of the Association, and the By Laws of the Mohawk Tower Associaiton.
- Created: 1882-1920
- Other: Date acquired: 11/30/1940
- Mohawk Tower Association (Organization)
Conditions Governing Access
The collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Copyright has been transferred to the Litchfield Historical Society for materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection. Copyright status for other collection materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Biographical or Historical Information
The Mohawk Tower Association was formed in 1882 by residents of Litchfield, Goshen and Cornwall, Connecticut to provide an observation tower on Mohawk Mountain from which the view to the horizon could be seen in all directions. The first meeting of the Association was held at the Town Hall in Goshen on August 26, 1882. A wooden pole tower was erected that year by Cyrus W. March and his son Charles, of Cornwall, on the summit of Mohawk Mountain after acquiring the title to an acre of land from Hunt, Lyman Iron Company. In 1882, 542 individuals visited the Tower, and the association collected $339.30 in receipts. In 1883, 687 persons visited the tower and a log cabin was built on the site at a cost of $400. In 1885 a subscription was started to purchase a telescope for the tower. By 1892 the tower was unsafe to climb, and the cabin was looted and began to fall into ruin. The wood tower later completely collapsed. In 1912 Seymour Cunningham began acquiring land in the area. He purchased the Schlittenhart farm from Harrison Ives, as well as the adjoining farms of William H. Baldwin and Luke Richards. Mr. Cunningham was then able to secure the majority interest in the Mohawk Tower Association. At a meeting at Mohawk Tower on September 1, 1913 it was voted to deed and assign all the property of the Association to Mr. Cunningham. After acquiring the land Cunningham erected a new round stone tower in place of the collapsed wooden structure. The new structure was thirty feet in circumference and thirty feet high, and referred to as “Aerie.” The area was fenced for sheep and many thousand Red and White seedlings were planted. Seymour Cunningham also attempted to acquire Mohawk Pond, but it was ultimately purchased by Alain White. After Mr. White acquired Mohawk Pond, and Mr. Cunningham unsuccessfully lobbied to have nearby roads closed, it became difficult for Mr. Cunningham to operate a large scale sheep farm on the land, and in 1920 Seymour Cunningham accepted an offer from Alain White to purchase his entire holdings. The tract of land later became the property of the State through Mr. White’s generosity, and became known as Mohawk Forest.
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This collection was processed with support from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).
- Mohawk Tower Association collection
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