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Curwood Castle
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Curwood Castle
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Location 224 John St.
Owosso, Michigan
Area less than one acre
Built 1922 (1922)
Architectural style French manor
NRHP reference No. 71000420
Quick facts for kids
Significant dates
Added to NRHP September 03, 1971

Curwood Castle is a small castle, now a museum, located in Owosso, Michigan, built by author James Oliver Curwood.


James Curwood was born in Owosso in 1878. He spent much of his early life out of doors, and at a young age left to tour the South on a bicycle. He eventually returned to Michigan, attended the University of Michigan for two years, and went to work as a reporter and later editor on at the Detroit Tribune. In 1907, Curwood returned to Owosso to focus on writing, and the next year published his first novel.

In 1922, Curwood built this replica of a Norman chateau along the banks of the Shiawassee River near his home in Owosso. Construction on the building began in 1922 and was completed in 1923. Curwood moved in and used one of the turrets as a writing studio.

Curwood later became a zealous conservationist, and was appointed to the Michigan Conservation Commission in 1926. He died a year later at age 49. In his will, the castle was given to the City of Owosso. It has served in various capacities over the years and is now a museum operated by the city, and is open to the public. Each year, the castle hosts the Curwood Festival. The event celebrates the life and works of James Oliver Curwood.


Curwood Castle is a romantic interpretation of a Norman chateau. It has an irregular plan with spires at three corners. It has a slate-covered gable roof with chimneys, linked at the base, extending from the rear gable facade. The exterior is made of yellow stucco containing decorative, randomly spaced fieldstones Curwood chose himself. The front facade has an entrance, framed with fieldstone, between two spires, covered with a projecting shed roof.

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