I love visiting the playgrounds of eccentric old men that had too much money. No matter where I am, these houses always revolve around a theme and usually contain many museum quality pieces that became a part of their collection over the years. Each state seems to have at least one of these places and while exploring the Atlantic Coast in Massachusetts, I came upon the Hammond Castle, a collection of medieval pieces put together by an interesting man that not many have heard about.
John Hayes Hammond Jr was an interesting man. The son of a wealthy mining magnate, he had the opportunity to meet Thomas Edison as a young man and forged a relationship with him that continued throughout the years that continued until Edisons death. Taking inspiration from Edison, Hayes became the second in line for the most invention patents filed, after only Edison himself. His career led him to become a pioneer in radio controlled technology, working with RCA and earning the title “Father of the remote control” even though that honor actually belongs to Nikola Tesla.
Over the years, he became highly interested in the medieval period of Europe, and built his house in the form of a castle modeled after the time period, going so far as including secret passages to stay authentic.
The castle is quite an interesting place to visit. Over the years it has become a complete tourist attraction and many a wedding takes place on the grounds overlooking the Atlantic. In fact, while I explored the house, I sat and talked to the staff who were preparing for a wedding telling me that they had one booked almost every weekend. The halls are filled with artifacts from days long past, and if you can find a point in the house where you are alone, you will be transported back in time. If not, it’s still a fun time seeing everyone let the past take over.
Closest Supercharger: Lynnfield MA 22 mi
600 King Rail Dr, Lynnfield, MA 01940
80 Hesperus Ave, Gloucester, MA 01930