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Gillette Castle State Park

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Title: Gillette Castle State Park  
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Subject: East Haddam, Connecticut, Lyme, Connecticut, List of Special Service Roads in Connecticut, Chatfield Trail, Pamela Colman Smith
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Gillette Castle State Park

Seventh Sister
Gillette Castle State Park is located in Connecticut
Location 67 River Rd., Hadlyme, Connecticut
Area 122 acres (49 ha)
Built 1914
Architect Gillette,William; Porteus-Walker Co.
Architectural style Bungalow/Craftsman, Medieval
Governing body State
NRHP Reference # 86002103[1]
Added to NRHP July 31, 1986

Gillette Castle State Park straddles the towns of East Haddam and Lyme, Connecticut, in the United States. Sitting high above the Connecticut River, the castle was originally a private residence commissioned and designed by William Gillette, an American actor who is most famous for his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes on stage.


  • Location 1
  • History 2
  • Image gallery 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6


Located at 67 River Road in East Haddam, the park consists of the castle and its grounds and receives 300,000 annual visitors. It reopened in 2002 after four years of restoration, costing 11 million dollars. It now includes a museum, hiking trails, and a picnic area.


William Gillette's "castle", called Seventh Sister, was built in 1919 [2] on a 184-acre (74 ha) tract at the top of the southernmost of a chain of hills known as the Seven Sisters. After Gillette died, having neither a wife or children, he had his will preclude the possession of his home by any "blithering sap-head who has no conception of where he is or with what surrounded". The State of Connecticut took over the property in 1943, renaming it Gillette Castle State Park. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1986.[3]

There are a number of oddities personally designed by Gillette, such as unusual doorknobs and locks, and a system of hidden mirrors for surveillance of the public rooms from the master bedroom. One can see the Connecticut River from the castle's garden.

The grounds originally had a railroad visitors could ride around the estate, complete with steam engine and an electric engine. The engines were later purchased by Lake Compounce in Bristol, Connecticut and used to transport guests around the lake. The remaining track was pulled up and the roadbed converted into walking trails. The engines were donated to the park in 1992, and are now on display.

Image gallery

See also


  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places.  
  2. ^
  3. ^ Friends of Gillette Castle State Park

External links

  • Gillette Castle State Park Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection
  • Friends of Gillette Castle State Park
  • Gillette Castle State Park
  • Gillette Castle All Things Medieval
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