The Vermont and Massachusetts Railroad had established rail service to Northfield by 1850, along a line running from Millers Falls, Massachusetts, to Brattleboro, Vermont. Even though the railway crossed the Connecticut River in Northfield, East Northfield Station was actually located in West Northfield, making it necessary for disembarking passengers to travel back across the Connecticut River on the lower deck of the rail bridge. To provide for safer and more convenient access across the river, Francis Schell gave $45,000 for the construction of a new steel bridge. The Schell Bridge is a Pennsylvania truss structure of impressive design, which crosses the river in one span of 515 feet
In June 2016, The Trust for Public Land and the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation ensured the complete and permanent protection of 1,300 acres of forest land which was previously the Northfield campus and owned by the Northfield Mount Hermon School for over a century.
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