Historic Preservation

Saving our History for Future Generations

Organized in 1892, the New Hampshire State Organization Daughters of the American Revolution (NHSODAR) was initially led by State Regent Martha Cilley Bouton Clarke. In her address to Continental Congress in 1894, she reflected on NHSODAR with the following words.

"Many a family in our ancient commonwealth possesses venerated treasures in relics, letters, and manuscripts belonging to colonial times, and our beautiful New Hampshire rejoices in the remembrance that she was one of the earliest settled and most devotedly loyal of the thirteen colonial states and that her children -- true Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution - are the rightful inheritors of the sterling qualities of love of freedom and justice, of truth and of virtue, which made their ancestors strong and their state powerful. "

NHSODAR has consistently demonstrated a commitment to preserving New Hampshire's historical sites. In addition to the many significant sites marked by individual chapters, the state organization has also marked several significant locations across the state.

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Penny Pines Forest

President Franklin D. Roosevelt created the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) to both employ the many of Americans who were out of work and to revitalize our National Forests. With the help of the CCC, the National Forest Service began growing small pine trees in nurseries across the country, with the goal of planting them in the National Forests. The small pine seedlings were sold for a penny each, thus the name, Penny Pines.

Under the leadership of President General Mrs. Henry M. Robert, the DAR participated in the Penny Pines project as part of the Golden Jubilee. Each state was to have a memorial forest, and each chapter was encouraged to pledge at least one acre of pine seedlings, which was about 500 trees. The CCC would plant the trees under the supervision of the National Forest Service, and the plantation would be dedicated by the DAR.

New Hampshire raised enough funds to plant 30,000 pines at Bear Brook State Park in Allenstown, New Hampshire. Both Norway and Red pines were planted, and the forest was marked with a granite boulder and plaque. The dedication was held on June 25, 1940, and was organized by State Regent Florence Tilton Crockett.

In 2012, the Division of Forests and Lands determined that the plantation red pine stands were infested by the invasive red pine scale insect. 118 acres of the Penny Pine forest was harvested to rid the area of the insect and remove the diseased trees.

The Penny Pines Forest at Bear Brook State Park is the only DAR Forest in New Hampshire. The forest is adjacent to the Old Allenstown Meeting House on Bear Brook Road.

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Coos Trail

In August of 1940, under the regency of Florence Tilton Crockett, the New Hampshire Daughters placed a marker at the New Hampshire terminus of the old Coos Trail.

The area in the northern part of New Hampshire around Colebrook was not settled until the end of the eighteenth century. Settlers in the area struggled to travel to a viable marketplace to both purchase and sell goods. Portland, Maine, was the nearest point of trade, but travel across the Dixville Notch was next to impossible.

In 1803, a road was projected through the Notch to Erroll. This road followed the old Indian trail and met a road known as "Coos Trail." This trail had been blazed in 1782 but had been abandoned for some time. The new road was not much better "than a bridle path," but it sufficed for a time. In 1822, a four-wheeled carriage was introduced into Coos County and the road expanded.

The tablet reads: "The Coos Trail was built in 1803 from Colebrook through Dixville Notch along the ancient trail of the Abenaki Indians to Erroll, where it met the Coos Road of Maine, completed in 1802 from Hallowell on the Kennebec River. Marked by the New Hampshire Daughters of the American Revolution 1940."

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On August 10, 1974, under the regency of Marion E. Briggs French Johnson, NHSODAR dedicated the newly refurbished portcullis at Fort William and Mary in Newcastle.

This historic fort was first fortified by the British in 1632. Known locally as "the Castle," the fort is strategically located at the mouth of Portsmouth Harbor on the Piscataqua River. On the night of December 14, 1744, local patriots from the seacoast, under the leadership of John Langdon, responded to the unrest in the colonies. Despite several warnings from Governor Wentworth, four hundred men stormed the fort and removed all the gunpowder in the magazine. The stores were taken up the Piscataqua to Durham.

The following day, under the leadership of John Sullivan, the patriots returned to the fort and removed the canon and the small arms. The capture of Fort William and Mary is indeed the first organized act of aggression against the British crown in the colonies, and is a significant precursor to the American Revolution.

New Hampshire Daughters raised funds for the restoration of the portcullis and the replacement of the cobblestones under the entrance arch. At the 1975 DAR Continental Congress, this project received a special award for outstanding Bicentennial Historical Action.

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Real Daughters

A Real Daughter is distinguished because she was the daughter of a Revolutionary War patriot, who became a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution after it was founded in 1890. There are 767 Real Daughters and New Hampshire is home to twenty-eight.

Learn about New Hampshire's Real Daughters.