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Farm History

History of the Land

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Valley View Farm sits on the hill where, in 1735, John Miller crossed into the Pocomtuc lands west of Northampton and built his homestead.

We acknowledge that Valley View Farm sits on the traditional and ancestral land of the Pocumtuc peoples, and honor with gratitude the land itself and the people who have stewarded it throughout the generations. This calls us to commit to continuing to learn how to be better stewards of this land we inhabit.

"While the community of Hatfield was being established on the west bank of the Connecticut River, the land farther west was left to the animals and the Indians. Alone, that is, until about the year 1735 when a noted hunter and trapper, John Miller of Northampton, erected a log house on a hill in the eastern portion of the "Hatfield Woods." He purchased a tract of 900 acres, bounded on the south by the Northampton line and embracing what later became a thriving village." His log cabin sat where our farmhouse now sits.

"For seventeen years Mr. Miller hunted and trapped in solitary splendor. Game was plentiful, with deer, bear, wolves, catamounts, wild turkey, and smaller animals to be had, and the streams were filled with trout. Indians were there , too, but obviously Mr. Miller was successful in evading their raids. Then Capt. Samuel Fairfield settled close by and ended Mr. Miller's solitary domination, but this probably was not too onerous since Captain Fairfield was his nephew. Between 1745 and 1750 a stage road was opened across the region between Northampton and Pittsfield and Captain Fairfield opened a tavern to accommodate travelers over the route."

-from Williamsburg by Louise and Frederick Goodhue

 
The farm lower fields were used by the village to celebrate the town's 150th birthday.

The farm lower fields were used by the village to celebrate the town's 150th birthday.

In the early 1920s the farm hosted town baseball games with visiting teams.

In the early 1920s the farm hosted town baseball games with visiting teams.

In 1850 "Central Dairy" where the Walpole family took over from the Miller family.

In 1850 "Central Dairy" where the Walpole family took over from the Miller family.

From the village of Haydenville this bridge led to our farm. This is a wooden queen-post truss bridge, sheathed inside and out to shield the structural timbers from the weather (a common, cheaper and much lighter alternative to building a fully covered bridge). The railings at each end, over which the antique gentlemen are peering, were not structural; they just kept gentlemen from falling off the ends of the bridge on their wobbly way home from the tavern.

From the village of Haydenville this bridge led to our farm. This is a wooden queen-post truss bridge, sheathed inside and out to shield the structural timbers from the weather (a common, cheaper and much lighter alternative to building a fully covered bridge). The railings at each end, over which the antique gentlemen are peering, were not structural; they just kept gentlemen from falling off the ends of the bridge on their wobbly way home from the tavern.