A castle in the woods of the Monadnock Region? Yes, indeed. How it got there, and the woman who built it make for some very interesting history in this region. I’ve wanted to visit this site for….well, let’s just say a long time. Finally I satisfied my curiosity.
These pictures of the castle, courtesy of the Chesterfield Conservation Commission, were taken in 1949. While Madame Sherri was known for her extravagance, what most didn’t see was how modestly she lived day-to-day, in a farmhouse across the road from the castle. Eventually her money dwindled. The house was vandalized in 1959 and destroyed by fire in 1962.
The 488 acres of the forest was donated for conservation to the Society for the Preservation of New Hampshire Forests.
Directions to Madame Sherri’s Forest
From the east: (from Keene area) take Route 9 west then follow Route 63 south through Chesterfield Village past the Town Hall. At 1.6 miles from Route 9, take a right on Stage Road, then shortly after bear left onto Castle Road. Castle Road will join Gulf Road then continues 2.6 miles (from Route 63) to the Madame Sherri Forest. You’ll see the gate and parking area on the left.
From the west: (from Brattleboro area) take Route 9 across the Connecticut River. Take a right just after the Riverside Store (along the river). Immediately take a left on Gulf Road and continue for 2.2 miles to the forest entrance (on the right).
Directions to Pisgah State Park
Follow NH Route 10 south out of Keene to Winchester. In Winchester turn right onto Elm Street. Elm Street turns into Old Chesterfield Road. Follow Old Chesterfield Road until you come to the entrance of Pisgah State Park.
Directions to Chesterfield Gorge
Take Route 9 west out of Keene. Follow Route 9 for about 7 miles or so, the entrance to Chesterfield Gorge will be on your right.