Naulakha rhododendron tour benefits Landmark Trust’s preservation efforts

DUMMERSTON — The Landmark Trust USA, a nonprofit historic preservation organization, invites the public to tour Naulakha, the house and gardens of author Rudyard Kipling.

The tours are available on Sunday, June 6 from 1 to 4:30 p.m. and Monday, June 7 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Proceeds will support the organization's mission to bring new life to heritage buildings.

The property's rhododendrons are likely to be in full bloom. The event will be held rain or shine, and no dogs are allowed.

Visitors will take safety precautions, including masks and social distancing. The tour will be self-guided with informational handouts.

Built for Kipling in 1892, Naulakha is a National Historic Landmark. The famed author wrote The Jungle Book, Captains Courageous, and portions of the Just So Stories in this house.

Much of Kipling's original furniture remains, and the entire house has been meticulously restored and maintained in a style that matches the historic period when the house was built.

Naulakha sits at the top of a tree-lined hill, with sweeping views of the Connecticut River Valley. On the grounds are a tunnel of rhododendron bushes, gardens, a stone pergola, and a clay tennis court.

Visitors can also tour Kipling's Carriage House, where Kipling's coachman Matthew Howard lived, as well as the Barn Museum - once home to Kipling's horses Nip and Tuck - that now serves as a mini-museum of his family's life in Vermont.

The Landmark Trust USA preserves and restores historic properties through creative and sustainable uses for public enjoyment, education and inspiration. The organization uses traditional skills and methods to restore these properties.

The nonprofit selects properties based on architectural and historical merit, with current properties dating from the early 1800s to the 1910s.

Most of Landmark's properties are available for short-term rental. Each stay at a Landmark Trust property supports the organization's nonprofit mission, bringing new life to heritage buildings.

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