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Deerfield, a largely rural community with many family owned farms, is in one of the most historic areas of Massachusetts. One block down from Rt 5 and 10, are some of the oldest homes in this part of the Connecticut River Valley. Along beautiful, tree lined Old Main Street of historic Old Deerfield sit houses dating back to the early 1700's. Some are privately owned, but most are part of Historic Deerfield Museum , Eaglebrook or Deerfield Academy, exclusive private schools. Old Main Street is often named as one of the most beautiful streets in America. Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association (PVMA) has a museum in the village as well. The Deerfield Inn sits in the center of town and offers both dining and lodging. A gift shop operated by the museum is next door.
Old Deerfield was the site of a raid during the French and Indian Wars in 1704, locally known as the Deerfield Massacre. Little is left from that period as the town was mostly razed, but pioneers on what was then the ‘western frontier’ of Massachusetts immediately rebuilt. You can see a door form one of the original houses on display in the PVMA museum. Most of the houses owned by Historic Deerfield, an 'open air' type museum along the lines of Williamsburg, are open to the public and docents give tours. (Fee) The Flynt Center of Early New England Life sits just back off the road and offers changing exhibits for self-guided tours.
Just before the south entrance to Historic Deerfield on Rt 5 and 10 is Richardson's Candy, a very popular spot to stop for homemade confections and ice cream. Going toward north toward Greenfield is The Old Deerfield Country Store (www.olddeerfieldcountrystore.com) selling baskets, gifts and ice cream. Savages Market offers deli salads and sandwiches made to order. Antiques in Deerfield is a group antique shops and a little further up Old Station Antiques sits on the Deerfield/Greenfield border. On the south border of Deerfield is the original store for The Yankee Candle Company. Very popular with tours, Yankee Candle sells a huge variety of scented candles and seasonal gifts. Their Christmas decorations draw large crowds. PVMA hosts an annual craft fair, usually held in June in Old Deerfield. Seasonal farm stands selling locally grown produce and some crafts line Rt 5 and 10 from spring to late fall.