Most People Don’t Know About New Hampshire’s Deadly Willey Slide
While New Hampshire’s natural beauty is breathtaking, it can also have a dark and ominous side. The same forces that have combined to create the landscape we see today have also been responsible for the loss of life and property. For early settlers to the region, the unpredictable weather in the mountains was a constant risk. For one family in particular, it proved to be catastrophic.
The Willey House, built in 1793, was one of the first dwellings in Crawford Notch. It would later be acquired by the Willey family in 1826.
After an extended drought in the summer of 1826, a torrential rainstorm arrived on the evening of August 28 and caused massive flooding.
The storm caused a massive landslide to tumble from the steep slopes of the mountain above the home. Miraculously, the debris split around either side of the house and spared the structure.
Unfortunately, the Willey family members, along with two hired hands, perished when they fled the house and into the wake of the landslide.
Altogether, the slide took the lives of nine people.
Today, the landslide has been revegetated and the site of the former Willey House is now a visitor center for Crawford Notch State Park.
The mountain from which the slide fell became known as Mt. Willey, and it is one of New Hampshire's famous 4,000-footers.
The best perspective on the area of the slide and the Willey House site is from Webster Cliff Trail on the east side of Crawford Notch.
New Hampshire has had its share of both natural and other disasters over time. Here are
7 times that the forces of nature wreaked havoc, the story of a 1907 train wreck, and another landslide that became a major tourist destination.
OnlyInYourState may earn compensation through affiliate links in this article.
Address: Willey House, 2057 US-302, Hart's Location, NH 03812, USA