Back in the late 1800s lived George Bancroft, Secretary of the Navy, founder of the US Naval Academy, Worcester resident, and childhood friend of Stephen Salisbury II. The Salisbury family was enormously wealthy and donated quite a lot of land to the city of Worcester.
When Stephen Salisbury III was pondering things to do, he decided to build a 56-foot-high stone castle-like tower to commemorate his father’s friend. The tower was finished in 1900. It was placed in this location because Bancroft was born down at the foot of this hill.
When Stephen Salisbury III passed away in 1907, he left most of his estate to the Worcester Art Museum. The museum then in 1912 gave this particular one-acre parcel to the city of Worcester to use as a public park.
For many years the tower was open year-round, but in the 1980s it became a party spot and was locked up. Now you can only go into the tower itself on Sundays in October, to take in the glorious foliage.