Saturday Talk – Ashintully Remembered: Postwar Living in a Gilded Age House

February 27, 2021 @ 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm
Suggested $20 donation

Berkshire County native Holly McLennan Ketron, raised at Ashintully in Tyringham, will give a visual presentation on the magnificent Palladian mansion’s history and its architecture.  The speaker will focus on its role as home to its builders, Robb de Peyster Tytus and his wife, Grace, as well as the year-round residence of Grace’s son, composer John McLennan and his family.

Ashintully joined the host of Gilded Age country retreats, of which Ventfort Hall is one, in 1911, as a year-round residence. It appeared rather late in the baronial building boom of the period.  One of the largest in the county, the Tyringham mansion’s Georgian Palladian style differed from many of the area’s shingled cottages. But like every Gilded Age cottage, with owners in residence for the Berkshire “season,” or year-round, Ashintully was the setting for both private family life and social functions.

Ketron and her younger sister, Angelica, are Grace’s granddaughters and the children of John and his wife, Honora. The speaker will bring to life the course of the family fortunes and use of the house down to the present time.

For instance, in the 1970s and 1980s, John expanded and enhanced one of the Berkshires most beautiful gardens that the Trustees of Reservations now maintains for the public. The estate had great meaning for her father, the family and for the village even after Ashintully became a splendid ruin.

While Ventfort Hall talks have brought us stories of lives led in Gilded Age cottages from a secondary standpoint, Ketron will relay her story from firsthand experiences and knowledge.  The direct tie from Robb and Grace to Ketron is a profound and living connection. Families have stories, and to hear the stories of the family at Ashintully over a century will reveal a picture of a wonderful place and a fascinating time.

Click here to order tickets for the Ketron talk on Zoom. A suggested donation of $20 is appreciated.