Because my father was in the Navy, I was eager to see the Naval Shipyard Museum and Lightship Museum in Portsmouth. This fascinating place covers over 250 years of Portsmouth's history. It is America's oldest and largest naval shipyard.
At first it was known as the Gosport Shipyard, but its name was changed during the Civil War to the Norfolk Navy Yards and later to the Norfolk Naval Shipyard.
This museum shows the history from Colonial to Civil War times and beyond. There are ship models, military artifacts, uniforms and exhibits. Until I came here, I did not know what a lightship was. They were ships with lights atop their masts similar to those in lighthouses, but since ships move, it made them more versatile!
The Lightship PORTSMOUTH served for 48 years off the coast of Virginia, Delaware, and Massachusetts to help mariners avoid dangerous shoals. They also helped ships enter harbors at night in a safe manner.
The PORTSMOUTH was retired to Portsmouth in 1964, and then designated a Natical Historic Landmark. It's now a museum with the ship's quarters fitted out realistically and filled with photographs, models, and uniforms among other interesting artifacts.
Fondest memory: I really enjoyed the Gift Shop with its lovely gifts such as jewelry, maps, prints, books, and even dolls!
2 High Street on Portsmouth Waterfront
The Lightship Museum
Water and London streets on the Portsmouth Waterfront
Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday
1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday
Admission is $3.00 and covers both museums.
Concord lies along the Merrimack River and more than 40,000 people live there. It's the political, industrial and commercial center of the state.
The best thing about Concord is the gold-domed capitol called the State House. Built in 1816 out of New Hampshire Granite that prisoners made into blocks on land donated by citizens, this location was selected because it was centrally located in the state.
There is a replica of the Liberty Bell that sits on the capitol grounds. The capitol's dome is made of copper, but workers painted the dome with gold. A copper eagle stands at the top of this dome with the eagle's head turned to the right to represent peace!
This is the nation's oldest state capitol in continual use by a legislative body.
In Concord, people live in close-knit neighborhoods, and there are ten neighborhoods throughout this small city.
Places of interest throughout this city would be:
New Hampshire Historical Society on North State Street.
Museum of New Hampshire History on North Main Street.
Bicentennial Square South Main, Warren Street, and Pleasant Street.Capitol Center for the Arts South Main Street.
Capitol City Shopping Center between Interstate 93 and Storrs Street
Christa McAuliffe Planetarium is located north of the downtown area.
Fondest memory: I enjoyed the Pierce Manse which is the home of Franklin Pierce, fourteenth president of the United States.
It's a museum containing the president's furnishings and personal memorabilia.We took a tour of the home because we happened to be there when tours were being given.
We also visited Old North Cemetery, and Pierce's grave is there. It's quite interesting with graves dating back to the 1730s.
"Nearly half of my poems must actually have been written in New Hampshire...Four of my children were born in Derry, New Hampshire...So you see it has been New Hampshire with me all the way. You will find my poems show it, I think." Robert Frost, 1938
My favorite poet has always been Robert Frost. His insights into life are incredible; his use of language is simple and rugged at the same time; his keen eye for beauty is remarkable. As the winner of four Pulitzer Prizes in Poetry, he is one of America's most beloved men of literature.
Although Frost was born in California, after his father's death, the family moved to the East Coast. Frost was 26 when he came to Derry, New Hampshire, to take up farming as an indentured tenant on a rundown farm. For him it seemed like exile because he was a poet, not a farmer.
After a few years of farming, he quit to teach at Pinkerton Academy where he was recognized as an excellent teacher.
Derry, New Hamshire, was good for Robert Frost because from it came eleven books of poetry with patterns of color and speech, stories of plain people, and moments of heroism.
My favorite from that period is: "Death of the Hired Man"
In 1912, Frost sold the farm and left Derry to move his family to England. And England's great gift to Robert Frost was recognition. Here, he published his first book of poems.
A writer once said, "New England had shown Frost how to listen to other people; old England helped him to recognize his own voice."
From that time, "Mending Wall is my favorite poem with its famous ironic line for all of us to contemplate,
"Good fences make good neighbors."
Perhaps Frost's most famous poem is:
"The Road Not Taken"
from which many VT members use quotes.
Fondest memory: In 1915 Frost returned his family to America, and this time they settled in Franconia, New Hampshire, where he purchased a little farm that backed up to the foot of Sugar Hill. T
his is where Frost wrote the wonderful poem called "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" that certainly describes New Hampshire in the winter months.
Soon, Frost was New England's Poet.
He taught, wrote, met other poets, learned not to be jealous of the other poet's fame, and gained more and more fame himself.
After his wife Elinor died, Frost returned to Derry, New Hampshire, to put her ashes beside Hyla Brook as she wished.
Frost was approaching his 89th birthday when he died, but he lives on through his famous poems that he sculptured in Derry and Franconia, New Hampshire as New England's Poet.
Fire and Ice
Some say the world will end in fire
Some say in ice.
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if I had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
to say that for destruction Ice
is also great
and would Suffice.
Please CLICK on photo to see moon and to take advantage of the panoramic photo
I found it remarkable that New Hampshire's Mt Washington Hotel has kept her beauty after all these years; for over 100 years people have come to this Grande Dame for her elegance and for the opportunity to step back in time.
In 1991, this wonderful hotel was purchased at auction by the MWH Preservation Limited Partnership for 3.12 million dollars. This partnership was spearheaded by Wayne Presby and Joel Bedor; the group is made up of members of four local families who provide employment to many native residents.
Once you have visited this place, you cannot forget the mile long driveway to reach the hotel. The hotel, a 200-room Spanish Renaissance structure, has over 900 feet of verandah where you can view the Presidential Mountain Range.
Once inside, you step back in time at least 100 years. There are huge stone fireplaces and a grand lobby that mark its time period...a place to slow down to enjoy life.
Besides the main hotel, there is the Bretton Arms Country Inn. It is on the hotel grounds and has 34 rooms that are filled with Victorian charm. (The chauffeurs used to stay here while their bosses stayed in the main hotel!). It has a small restaurant on the ground floor which offers meals.
The hotel offers many special event weekends such as Gourmet Dining and Murder Mystery.
The hotel just recently began being open year round and are now fully geared up for winter activities (downhill skiing, sleigh rides, ice-skating, and snow tubing.5s*
Fondest memory: This winter-time photo of Mount Washington Hotel with the Moon behind it is a Post Card that I purchased there. Thought you would enjoy seeing it.
New Hampshire is a wonderful state to explore. If you have children, take a road trip to New Hampshire and stop ever so often just to let the children and yourself see, touch, smell all that nature has to offer.
This photo shows our daughter Jill having the time of her life just being a kid. We all loved the granite rocks, the roadside streams, the large and small waterfalls, the wildlife, and the glorious trees.
There are so few times when our children are young that we can take the time to let them be completely free of modern life, of computers, of television (especially MTV), of programed schedules....going to New Hampshire either in the spring, fall, summer, or even the winter affords you that opportunity to bond with your child and to bond with nature.
As I gathered these photographs to make this site, all those memories came rushing back, and I was so thankful for that time years ago when, as a family of three, we took our time, we stopped on impulse, we were spontaneous.
I'm sure you've heard of Dartmouth College located in Hanover. Hanover is located in the River Valley between New Hampshire and Vermont.
This ninth oldest college in the nation is located in the heart of the town. What a pretty town it is with darling well-kept houses, unique shops, and several fine restaurants. The college buildings add to the old-fashioned look of the area.
On campus, we visited the Hood Museum of Art. Here, we saw some fine collections of Native American, African, European, and Asian art.
If you follow the Connecticut River up from Hanover, you'll be able to see several little villages, one after the other. Orford is the most famous because Washington Irving said it was "the most beautiful place he had seen in all of the United States and Europe"!
Fondest memory: Orford is, indeed, beautiful with a row of seven mansions built between 1773-1839.
These mansions overlook the Connecticut River. If you love architecture, you will love this Connecticut River Valley in New Hampshire.
This is the Squam River Bridge. Not only is it wonderful for pictures .. lots of ice fishermen around in the winter... but also filled with winter storage boats and docks waiting for the summer crowd. This little spot could use up all your photo film for a weekend. It's picturesque in all directions. There were little cottages grouped together on one side of the lake. The kind of place to run away to when you are exhausted and want some beautiful quiet place to be peaceful.
We found a couple of covered bridges as we drove around Ashland, Meredith and the surrounding area. The Smith Bridge was rebuilt but in the old style....they are charming, unique and very photographable. I love the sound of the tires going through the bridge while the rumbling on wooden planks echoes inside the roof.
Though you can see lots of great scenery from your car, the best part of the White Mountains in New Hamshire can only be explored on foot. With some of the most well developed trails in the United States, you just have to get out and do some hiking.
Fondest memory: Sometimes a person can put an idea in your head without you even knowing it. One such case was my uncle, who repeatedly warned of the dangers of climbing Mount Washington, his home state of New Hampshire's highest peak. Claiming it had the most unpredictable weather in the world seemed a bit melodramatic as I had personally seen the winds whip across the top of Mount Everest some years earlier and had once waited an entire week just to see Mount McKinley. I tried to reason that since his pride and joy had a weather station on top, it was just the worst recorded winds that they could lay claim to. I agreed that more people might have been killed climbing it as surely more people had attempted it. People might start out on a clear day unprepared and find themselves in snowstorm a few hours later. But I pointed out also that this weather station and the road leading to it would provide a lot more comfort than anything found on either McKinley or Everest. As is often the case with such arguments, there is only one way to prove your point. You just have to do it. (continued below in Fondest Memory)
Fondest memory: I found myself nearing White Mountain National Forrest with a bit of a chip on my shoulder. Though I knew there might be nicer and far less crowded trails in the park, I felt an irrepressible urge to climb that states claim to fame. It was the tail end of a five-week trip around New England and the Maritimes, during which we had tackled most likely the more tough Mount Katahdin in Maine so I found myself feeling pretty confident. Not expecting great weather in early October, I had not prepared any information on the area. It had after all been a long trip with lots of details to coordinate so I left this portion of the trip up to the whims of nature to decide. Of course, as is generally the case, you get the best conditions when you are least ready for them. It had been an Indian Summer and the leaves were finally changing so we enjoyed the colorful foliage as we made our virgin drive through the eastern side of the park. The sun sets early and fast that time of year so we were a bit hurried to get a spot and set up camp. In so doing, we drove right by the rangers' office and they could have explained that the shortest though steepest climb of Mount Washington started pretty much right there. But I had not succumbed wholly to this drive to climb the mighty peak and sped instead to a campground in a prettier area of the park. (continued below in Fondest Memory)
Fondest memory: With the clear skies came a cold night and even colder morning, but it was a gorgeous one just the same. We had planned on pulling up camp and maybe staying in a mountain hut or deciding on another spot after our hike but we found the campground we had chosen was indeed a very nice one. I had discovered my grave error of driving by the trailhead during my previous night's reading but rather than drive all the way back around, I maturely agreed that we should just do a nice walk and not worry about a trivial thing like proving a point. We gathered our gear and tried to make a beeline for another rangers' office on our side of the park but the scenery was enchanting and we made a few photo stops. At one point, I saw a beautiful swatch of multi-colored foliage with a babbling brook in the foreground and pulled over to get what I swore would be the best foliage photo yet. As I framed it in the viewfinder, I noticed a large bird in one corner, sitting on an outstretched branch. A bit startled I looked up to see a huge hawk staring down at me as if in hopes of my dropping dead for his morning feed. (continued below in Fondest Memory)
Fondest memory: I tried to be quick but between the watchful predator and my trying to find the perfect angle for my masterpiece, we found ourselves chatting with the ranger about 10:30. He explained with a sigh that it was THE perfect day to climb Mount Washington but that it was a tad too late to start such an endeavor. He detailed two great hikes, one in the valley we were in and another in another valley we had planned on checking out the following day. The Crawford Path that we would be walking on was reputed to be the oldest continuously used trail in the United States and just a marvel of engineering and nature. He explained that it would be a good warm up hike that would bring us up to Mount Pierce and great views in a little over a couple hours. From there, we could see how we felt and continue along the ridge to the Lake of the Clouds Hut that was currently closed for the season. I cursed myself for being so tardy but rather than whine and waste time, we just made our way to the trailhead as quickly as we could. (continued below in Fondest Memory)
Fondest memory: The path was a splendid, a lushly green tract of earth. It began innocently enough as it meandered its way though mossy nurse trees before beginning its steep incline over muddy roots that made for a good workout. We found ourselves above tree-line in no time and decided to forgo Mount Pierce altogether as we saw a few people ambling up there already. Instead we made a beeline across more famous members of the Presidential Range with the first president's namesake peak all the while looming in the distance. It was a glorious day and with not a person in sight, we enjoyed the ridge walk unencumbered by civilization aside from the ugly form of the weather station on top of the area's highest point. With Eisenhower and Monroe behind us, we saw the twin peaks of Franklin framing perfectly what would normally be my goal. We made a tour of both sides of Franklin and decided the view over the Lake of Clouds Hut was a perfect place to make up some lunch. I had carried our small stove and some dried food so we enjoyed a nice meal of mashed potatoes and broccoli with cheese as we soaked in a cloudless sky bedecked with peak after peak of New Hampshire's finest. (concluded below in Fondest Memory)
Fondest memory: Our solitude was soon interrupted by a day-tripper from Mount Washington who ran frantically and alone. He explained that he was "doing" all of the peaks this way. He drove his car to the top of Mount Washington and then walked from one President to the next. He would surely "have" them all in no time. He said we could be on top of Mount We tried to be friendly and not laugh at this absurd notion of "climbing" all the peaks in the region in this fashion but it was easy to see our ideas had little to do with his. Soon he was off, fluttering like a butterfly from one flower to the next but not before telling us that Mount Washington's top could be reached in one hour from where we dined. We finished up our food and gingerly made our way down to the Lake of Clouds Hut in no time. From there, it was probably a steep and tough forty-five minutes to the top of the elusive peak. There were just two problems. It was already 3:30 and we had a good two and a half-hour walk back to the car from where we stood. Going up and down would bring us back to the car in total darkness at that time of year. We might have gone up and seen if we could catch the train back to the road or even hitched a ride but we decided against it. We had met one guy from up there and he wasn't our kind. Our guess was there would be lots more where he came from so we made our way back across the Presidentials, unencumbered by civilization and all of its trappings. In this direction, there was no ugly weather station marring our view and I forgot all about proving my point. Mount Washington was behind me now and though I had not "got" it, I had, unlike our butterfly, got the whole point of being there in the first place.
Favorite thing: We stopped in at the lake house while visiting my son's ski vacation house. Couldn't resist checking in at the little cottage on Lake Winnepesaukee where the kids had so many wonderful times in the sun with old and good friends. Think all those memories were going through Christopher's head as he looked out at the frozen lake for the first time since he was about 16 yrs. old.
The North of New Hampshire means mountains. The Appalachians stretch in direction southwest to northeast. The dominating mountain region here are the White Mountains with the highest peaks to find in the Presidential Range (Mt. Washington, 6288 ft.). The mountains are by far not as spectacular as in the American West, Canada or in the Alps. However, they appear quite massive due to deeply shaped valleys - towns are set in quite low elevations.
When we visited in early October the skies were blue except for one rainy afternoon, foliage in full swing (see pics) and the air was crisp. No crowds.
Fondest memory: The blue water of Sawyer's pond with the white canoe, red leaves, blue sky. These colours!
The views from the top station of Wildcat gondola - Mt. Washington, the rolling hills towards the ocean (Maine).
Although no mountains - the small College town of Hanover, the Green that filled up with students at lunch time.
100 Portsmouth Blvd, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, 03801, United States
Good for: Business
Stayed last psring and this summer and every time the service, accomodation and staff were amazing....more
21 Front Street, Manchester, New Hampshire, 03102, United States
Good for: Couples