Jenny Lind Tower

Truro, Massachusetts
The Jenny Lind Tower in Truro, Massachusetts, is a unique stone structure with a mysterious history in connection with a famous singer.
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About This Location

The Jenny Lind Tower, standing tall in Truro, Massachusetts, is a unique stone structure with a fascinating history and connections to the legendary opera singer Jenny Lind. Nestled between the Highland Light lighthouse and the North Truro Air Force Station, this tower, resembling a castle’s battlement, reaches a height of seventy feet.

Originally, the tower was part of the circa 1845 Fitchburg Railroad depot in Boston, later owned by the Boston and Maine Railroad from 1900 to 1927. The tower’s name is linked to a mythical story involving Jenny Lind. Legend has it that Lind, the “Swedish Nightingale,” sang from the tower in Boston to calm a crowd unable to attend her oversold concert occurring in the auditorium above the station. P. T. Barnum, Lind’s publicist, possibly contributed to the creation of this legend. However, newspaper reports from the time do not support the notion of Lind singing from the tower to the public below.

In 1927, when the Boston station was being dismantled, lawyer Henry M. Aldrich, connected with the railroad, had the tower transported to North Truro. He bought a hundred acres of land from a local resident, Mort Small, and erected the tower on this new site. The reason for this relocation remains unclear, with some speculating a connection to Aldrich’s admiration for Jenny Lind. But, Henry Aldrich, her supposed admirer, was not born until 17 years after her Boston concert. It is odd that just the tower was moved without any extra work being completed. The tower is completely hollow.

The legend of the Jenny Lind Tower gained momentum through the years, fueled by stories suggesting that Lind’s ghost ascends the tower to sing when the ghost of Goody Hallett, the “Witch of Wellfleet,” haunts the woods. Local lore weaves tales of banshee screams, curses, and the ethereal beauty of Lind’s song frightening away Goody Hallett.

The Cape Cod National Seashore acquired the deed for the tower in 1961, generously donated by Aldrich’s daughter-in-law. While there are no direct roads to the tower, it is in close proximity to a road leading to a Federal Aviation Administration radar facility on the grounds of the old North Truro Air Force Station.

For visitors nowadays, accessing the tower involves parking in the dozen or so spaces near the Air Force base entrance. Additional parking is available outside the base on the entry road. Parking is free, and permits are not required, but visitors should adhere to any posted signs, as the road to the Air Force base and Jenny Lind Tower may be closed to vehicles at times. Exploring the Jenny Lind Tower not only offers a glimpse into its mysterious past but also provides an opportunity to immerse oneself in the natural beauty of Cape Cod.

Location

Address: 29 Old Dewline Road, Truro, Massachusetts
Place GPS Coordinates: 42.034500, -70.055194
Parking GPS Coordinates: 42.034500, -70.055194
Parking Notes: There are about a dozen parking spots located close to the air force base entrance. Additional parking can be found outside the base on the entry road. Parking is free and no permits are required. That said, be sure to obey any parking signs considering sometimes the road leading to the air force base and Jenny Lind Tower is closed to vehicles.

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