The Hinsdale Academy, in Colonial design, was built
in April, 1848, for use as an educational institute. The marble steps,
leading to the veranda, are topped with wooden columns. This building
was purchased by the town on January 14, 1867, and used as a public
high school for several years, and now as a Town Hall. At present the
first floor houses the Selectmens' and Assessors' rooms, and the Girl
Scout and Boy Scout rooms. The upper floor has an auditorium of 200
The Baptists who had been meeting in
lofts, homes and taverns, built a small wooden church in 1816 on the
flat, nearly opposite the Congregational Church. Elder Jackson was a
leader. This building later became the home of the late Miss Harriet
Roth, when a new, and larger building was erected on Water Street, now
Main Street, in 1890, to "be near much water" for baptisms.
This church closed its doors on Oct. 8, 1899. The building was being
taken down about 1940 and was destroyed by fire.
The Methodist Episcopal Church was built
about 1825, of brick, next to the Congregational Church. The Methodists
disbanded after the close of the Civil War. The house is now the home
of William Campbell and his daughter, Mrs. John Record and family. The
building was used for a time as a wheelbarrow factory and toy wagon
shop, and in 1885, the rear housed a basket shop.
St. Patrick's parish built a wooden building
in 1852, and dedicated its church on September 19, 1869, with the Rev.
A. Romano, assisting in the service. The Roman Catholics had suffered
for many years the hardship of walking over Tully Mountain to Pittsfield
to attend Mass at St. Joseph's Church. Masses were occasionally said
in private homes. St. Patrick's was a mission of St. Joseph's until
Father Romano came as a settled pastor in 1868. The Rev. Daniel Cronin,
pastor from 1876 to 1906, left Hinsdale to become pastor of St. Agnes
Church in Dalton. The present church was built for St. Patrick's in
1936 and the old edifice was taken down. First Mass in the new St. Patrick's
Church was celebrated on July 18, 1937. The rectory, built about 1852,
was destroyed by fire in January 1953, claiming the lives of the pastor,
the Rev. James J. Courtney and his housekeeper, Mrs. Mary Moore. The
parish bought the home of Dr. Edward J. Russell, school superintendent
in Pittsfield, and converted it into a new rectory.