The author of one of the most famous children’s books of all time had a home in Vermont that is open for tours this month.
British author Rudyard Kipling wrote his most famous story, “The Jungle Book”, as well as “Captains Courageous” when he lived in the ship-like house “Naulakha” from 1892-1896. The Nobel laureate also began work on the “Just So Stories” at the home in Dummerston, outside Brattleboro.
The Landmark Trust USA, which oversees the home, will be offering self-guided tours of the property for three days beginning Sunday, June 5. Here are a few details you might want to know before setting off on your Kipling adventure in southern Vermont.
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Rhododendrons are in full bloom
The grounds of Naulakha include a lush tunnel of rhododendron bushes. Those flowering plants have a lot to do with the timing of the tours, as the rhododendrons are likely in full bloom for the occasion, according to a press release announcing the tours. If you’re tired of looking at pretty flowers, an expansive view of the Connecticut River valley might grab your attention.
Kipling’s Horses, Nip and Tuck
The Barn Museum is located on the site. The building was an actual barn that housed Kipling’s horses named Nip and Tuck. The building now serves as a mini-museum, telling the story of Kipling and his family’s life in Vermont. Also on the property are gardens, a stone pergola and a clay tennis court.
Stay in Naulakha
Visitors to these tours can see the Coach House, where Kipling’s coachman Matthew Howard lived. Guests can also stay overnight there. Not surprisingly, stays at the Koetshuis are popular, so book well in advance. Lodging in the Carriage House costs $270 per night and requires a minimum stay of three nights. Naulakha itself is also available, for $470 per night.
If you’re not that familiar with Kipling or just read “The Jungle Book” many years ago, here’s a quick recap of his life. Born in India and raised largely in England, Kipling became a journalist before rising to fame as a fiction writer. Praised for his lively writing style, Kipling has also been “variously labeled a colonialist, a jingoist, a racist, an anti-Semite, a misogynist, a right-wing imperialist warmonger,” according to a New Yorker article. quoted by the Poetry Foundation.
‘I’ve never cried’
Kipling indirectly generated what the Guinness Book of World Records has called the most popular postcard ever. A man and a woman are sitting under a tree and the man asks, “Do you like Kipling?” The woman replies, “I don’t know, you bad boy, I’ve never bickered!”
if you go
WHAT: Self-guided tours of Naulakha, the home of author Rudyard Kipling
WHEN: 2pm-5pm Sunday 5 June, 10am-4pm Monday 6 June and Tuesday 7 June
WHERE: 707 Kipling Road, Dummerston
INFORMATION: $25 entrance fee in advance. https://landmarktrustusa.org/rudyard-kiplings-naulakha
Please contact Brent Hallenbeck at [email protected] Follow Brent on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BrentHallenbeck.