About This Place
Lenox is a town in Berkshire County, Massachusetts, United States. Set in Western Massachusetts, it is part of the Pittsfield, Massachusetts Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 5,077 at the 2000 census. Where the town has a border with Stockbridge is the site of Tanglewood, summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Lenox includes the villages of New Lenox and Lenoxdale.
With mountains to the east and west, the area remained wilderness into the 18th-century. Hostilities during the French and Indian Wars discouraged settlement until 1750, when Jonathan and Sarah Hinsdale from Hartford, Connecticut established a small inn and general store. The Province of Massachusetts Bay thereupon auctioned large tracts of land for 10 townships in Berkshire County, set off in 1761 from Hampshire County.
For 2,250 pounds Josiah Dean purchased Lot Number 8, which included present-day Lenox and Richmond. After conflicting land claims were resolved, however, it went to Samuel Brown, Jr., who had bought the land from the Mahican chief, on condition that he pay 650 pounds extra. It was founded as Richmond in 1765. But because the Berkshires divided the town in two, the village of Yokuntown (named for an Indian chief) was set off as Lenox in 1767. The town was intended to be called Lennox, probably after Charles Lennox, 3rd Duke of Richmond and Lennox (Scottish Gaelic "Leamhnachd"), but the name was misspelled by a clerk at incorporation.