As one of the original 13 colonies, we all know New Hampshire has plenty of history. But there are plenty of sites that often fly under the radar. Have you visited these historic homes? A tour through any of them will send you right back in time and get you in touch with our state’s history.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion Historic Site, Portsmouth
The home of the first colonial governor of New Hampshire, Benning Wentworth, this forty-room mansion was constructed in 1753. Later in its history it became an artists colony that was visited by artists including John Singer Sargent Isabella Stewart Gardner. It was donated to the state of New Hampshire in 1954 and his been maintained as a historic monument hosting visitors and events ever since. Visit at 375 Little Harbor Rd Portsmouth, NH.
2. John Paul Jones House, Portsmouth
John Paul Jones, a Revolutionary War naval hero, lived in this home while he supervised the building of the Naval ship America. It's now a museum showcasing the classic Georgian architecture of the 18th century. The gardens are also worth a visit. Stop by at Middle St & State St Portsmouth, NH.
3. Wentworth Lear Historic Houses, Portsmouth
The Wentworth Lear Historic Houses are actually two homes managed by the same association - the Wentworth-Gardner House and the Tobias Lear House. The Wentworth-Gardner house was built in the Georgian style in 1760 for members of the influential Wentworth family. The Tobias Lear house is also a Georgian mansion but is slightly more modest, and was built in 1740. Tour both at 50 Mechanic St. Portsmouth, NH 03801.
4. Mary Baker Eddy Historic House, Concord
Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of Christian Science, lived in this Greek Revival house built in 1850 from 1889-1892. Stop by for a tour at 62 N State St, Concord, NH 03301.
5. Warner House, Portsmouth
Portsmouth's Warner House was built in 1716 for Scots-Irish sea captain and merchant Archibald Macpheadris, and subsequently housed 6 generations of his family. It's now a museum complete with rooms furnished in the styles of the different periods of occupancy. Take a tour at 150 Daniel St, Portsmouth, NH 03801.
6. Robert Frost Farm State Historic Site, Derry
Home to Robert Frost and his family from 1900-1911, this property is where some of his most famous poems were written. Tour the classic farmhouse, walk on the property's trails, or swing by for a poetry reading at 122 Rockingham Rd
Derry, NH 03038.
7. Barrett House, New Ipswich
Built in 1800 by Charles Barrett as a wedding gift for his son, this grand home features period furniture, musical instruments, and elaborate French wallpaper. Its 70 acres include beautiful gardens and a Gothic Revival summer house. Explore it at 79 Main Street New Ipswich, NH, 03071.
8. Governor John Langdon House, Portsmouth
This National Historic Landmark was built for John Langdon, a three-term governor of New Hampshire, Revolutionary War Leader, and signer of the United States Constitution. George Washington himself noted his admiration for the beautiful mansion. See it for yourself at 143 Pleasant Street Portsmouth, NH, 03801.
9. Daniel Webster Birthplace State Historic Park, Franklin
This two-room log cabin is a far cry from the mansions of Portsmouth, but it's just as important historically. The birthplace of important New Hampshire politician Daniel Webster, it gives visitors insight into the simple but difficult country life of the late 18th century. Step back in time at 131 North Road Franklin, NH 03235.
10. Russell-Colbath House, Albany
This property, on the National Register of Historic Places, is located right on the Kancamagus Highway. Built in 1831 by early settlers in the area, it's a great example of a 19th-century homestead. The property also includes a barn, a walking trail, and a cemetery. It sits about 12 miles west of Conway on the Kancamagus Highway.