Robbie is a ceramic artist and teacher. Kurt is an environmental philosopher & director of Biocitizen.org.
Robbie Heidinger purchased this cabin in 2012
The Glow Room abuts Army Corps of Engineer flood control land so there are no houses, or any development, for miles and miles.
Since it is the last structure at the end of 2-mile dirt road, the Glow Room is a place where you can or will encounter wild brook trout, moose, deer, bears, bobcats, coyotes, fisher cats, porcupines, otters, foxes, mink, beaver, sharp shinned hawks, mergansers and bald eagles. Much of the forest has not been logged for two or more generations, and looks and smells like a forest should. The brooks and rivers are as clean and beautiful as they get in New England, and since you live aside them you can walk for a few minutes, or hours, and find spots where you are totally alone, totally at peace.
The name Indian Hollow refers to the history of the Rhodes family, Native Americans of the Nonotuck tribe who were famous from about 1820 to 1850 for curing patients with their homeopathic medicines, made with herbs they grew and foraged locally.
The Glow Room was purchased in 1876 by Civil War vetHenry Weeks, whose wife was a granddaughter of Yellow Jacket, a famous Indian Chief of western New York. He deflected the Dead Branch to form a millpond, used the hydropower to cut stone and began to make and sell 'Old Norwich Scythe Stones.' The ruins of the stone mill are wonderful explore. Near the Chauncey Brook bridge, he set up a blacksmith shop and made knives and sap spouts, and repaired wagons and sleds. Later he had a store there.
'Historic Hampshire,' reports that 'Evening week day services were held in in a little hall over the Chesterfield Hollow blacksmith's shop, and when he worked late, smoke from the forge seeped up from below. Lyceums in the blacksmith-shop hall drew crowds of young people from the adjoining towns. The program consisted of a few recitations, songs by the quartet, the reading of a newspaper called the Valley Star, and a debate a question of the day.'
This spirit lives on—
The Glow Room is a sanctuary within a sanctuary. You can experience the vitality of the rivers and mountains, fields and forests of the Hollow, and then drive 12 miles and enjoy the boutiques, restaurants and cultural events that earn Northampton its title of 'Paradise City.'
We always looked for a little cabin tucked away from it all, yet not so far away that getting there was a triathalon. When we first saw it, passing by after a June rafting expedition, we were sad because we thought it would be sold in a blink. But when we checked in late September, it was still unsold. Our first walk through revealed why—the place was about to collapse; it was a sick house, that had framed portraits of Stonewall Jackson and Robert E Lee on the walls. But we loved it. And it seemed to want us. About of year of constant work, first stripping it down to its bones and then carefully rebuilding it, restored it to health.
Any person who spends a few days here feels better about life, because here you feel it thrumming all around you.