- Exeter, New Hampshire
official_name = Exeter, New Hampshire
mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location in Rockingham County,
settlement_type = Town
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name2 = Rockingham
Board of Selectmen
leader_name = Joseph Pace, Chairman
established_title = Incorporated
established_date = 1638
area_magnitude = 1 E8
area_total_km2 = 51.8
area_total_sq_mi = 20.0
area_land_km2 = 50.9
area_land_sq_mi = 19.6
area_water_km2 = 1.0
area_water_sq_mi = 0.4
area_water_percent = 1.85
population_as_of = 2007
population_total = 14,735
population_density_km2 = 289.5
population_density_sq_mi = 751.8
timezone = Eastern
utc_offset = -5
timezone_DST = Eastern
utc_offset_DST = -4
latd = 42 |latm = 58 |lats = 53 |latNS = N
longd = 70 |longm = 56 |longs = 52 |longEW = W
elevation_m = 10
elevation_ft = 33
website = [http://town.exeter.nh.us/ town.exeter.nh.us]
postal_code = 03833
area_code = 603
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 33-25380
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 0873595
Exeter is a town in Rockingham County,
New Hampshire, United States. The town's population was 14,058 at the 2000 census. Exeter was the county seat until 1997, when county offices were moved to neighboring Brentwood. Home to the Phillips Exeter Academy, a private university-preparatory school, Exeter is situated where the Exeter Riverfeeds the tidal Squamscott River.
The urban portion of the town, where over 69% of the population resides, is defined by the U. S. Census Bureau as the Exeter
The area was once the domain of the Squamscott Indians, a sub-tribe of the
Pennacooknation, which fished at the falls. On April 3, 1638, the Reverend John Wheelwrightand others purchased the land from Wehanownowit, the sagamore. Wheelwright had been exiled by the Massachusetts Bay Colony, a puritan theocracy, for sharing the dissident religious views of his sister-in-law, Anne Hutchinson. The minister took with him about 175 individuals to found the town he named after Exeterin Devon, England.
One of the four original townships in the province, Exeter originally included Newmarket, Newfields, Brentwood, Epping and Fremont. Thirty-five freemen of Exeter signed on
July 4, 1639the Exeter Combination, a document written by Reverend Wheelwright to establish their own government. [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=mLhplMOzXzAC&pg=PA22&lpg=PA22&dq=%22thomas+leavitt%22+wheelwright+combination+james+hill+fitts&source=web&ots=5Dxl4HSupY&sig=2hQsZryYAA-a8ep3dy0k1K6erro&hl=en Signers of the Exeter Combination, History of Newfields, New Hampshire, 1638-1911, James Hill Fitts, 1912] ] The settlers hunted, planted and fished. Others tended cattleand swine, or made shakes and barrelstaves.
Thomas Wilson established the first
grist millon the eastern side of the island in the lower falls. This mill was established within the first season of settling in Exeter, and his son Humphrey assumed control of the mill in 1643, when Thomas died. [Bell, Charles H., "History of the Town of Exeter, New Hampshire." Heritage Books 1979. Pages 317-18.]
Some early Exeter settlers came from
Hingham, Massachusetts, including the Gilman, Folsom and Leavitt families. [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=ahUWAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA175&dq=%22thomas+leavitt%22+%22new+hampshire%22+farmer&lr=#PPA174,M1 Some Account of the Gilmans, Otises, Leavitts, Otises & C., History of the Town of Hingham, Plymouth County, Massachusetts, Solomon Lincoln, Farmer and Brown, Hingham, 1827] ] [John Leavitt, founding deacon of Old Ship Churchin Hingham, was granted land in Exeter in 1652, but there is no sign that he took up residence. But his sons Moses and Samuel Leavitt moved to Exeter, presumably to be closer to their maternal grandfather, Edward Gilman Sr.] In 1647, Edward Gilman, Jr. established the first sawmill, and by 1651 Gilman had his own 50-ton sloop with which to conduct his burgeoning business in lumber, staves and masts. Although he was lost at sea while traveling to England in 1653, his family later became prominent as lumbermen, shipbuilders, merchantsand statesmen. [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=KFtyvk-Quv8C&pg=PA103&lpg=PA103&dq=%22suffolk+county+deeds%22+edward+gillman&source=web&ots=XhQ_RNvLgs&sig=Qq5gNoF_B_yxOQqecukRhh47S1w&hl=en#PPA103,M1 Deed of Edward Gillman Sr., Suffolk County Deeds, The Essex Antiquarian, 1905] ] [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=3ZXery-2PvYC&pg=PA115&lpg=PA115&dq=gillman+ipswich&source=web&ots=Z_9sfawaXb&sig=P1LS0qbEC8wTj41UOzqYL-OoHHw&hl=en#PPA115,M1 Gilman deeds, Exeter, The Essex Antiquarian, Sidney, Perley, 1897] ]
The Gilman Garrison House, a
National Historic Landmark, and the American Independence Museumwere both former homes of the Gilman family. [ [http://www.spnea.org/visit/homes/gilman.htm Gilman Garrison House, Historic New England, Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities] ] [ [http://www.independencemuseum.org/ The American Independence Museum, Exeter, N.H.] ] The Gilman family also donated the land on which Phillips Exeter Academy stands, including the Academy's original Yard, the oldest part of campus. [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=EDFMAAAAMAAJ&pg=RA5-PA214&lpg=RA5-PA214&dq=gillman+ipswich+peck&source=web&ots=fdVRlWSZ6Z&sig=GLPriwdloPyYwBiqPXH6kZ_OZ9U&hl=en The Gilmans of America, Searches Into the History of the Gillman or Gilman family, Alexander Gillman, London, 1895] ] The Gilmans of Exeter also furnished America with one of its founding fathers, Nicholas Gilman, and the state of New Hampshire with treasurers, a governor, representatives to the General Assembly and judges to the General Court. [ [http://www.seacoastnh.com/Famous_People/Framers_of_Freedom/The_Gilmans_of_Exeter/ The Gilmans of Exeter, SeacoastNH.com] ]
The Gilman family began trading as far as the
West Indieswith ships they owned out of Portsmouth. It was a high-stakes business. In an 1803 voyage, for instance, the 180-ton clipper 'Oliver Peabody,' owned by Gov. John Taylor Gilman, Oliver Peabody, Col. Gilman Leavitt and others, was boarded by brigs belonging to the Royal Navyunder command of Admiral Horatio Nelson. Enforcing a blockade against the French, Nelson offered ship Captain Stephen Gilman of Exeter a glass of wine and paid him for his cargo in Spanish dollars. [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=re54yBq6VBEC&pg=PA291&dq=gilman+leavitt&lr=#PPA291,M1 Rambles about Portsmouth, Charles Warren Brewster, Lewis W. Brewster, Portsmouth, N.H., 1869] ] The trip demonstrates how far afield the ambitious merchants of Exeter reached in their trading forays.
Exeter suffered its last Indian raid in August of 1723, and by 1725 the tribes had left the area. In 1774, the rebellious
Provincial Congressbegan to meet in the Exeter Town House after Colonial Governor John Wentworth banned it from the colonial capitol at Portsmouth. In July of 1775, the Provincial Congress had the provincial records seized from royal officials in Portsmouth and brought to Exeter as well. And so Exeter became New Hampshire's Revolutionary Warcapital, an honor it held for fourteen years until Concord assumed the role.
In 1827, the Exeter Manufacturing Company was established beside the river, using
water powerto produce cotton textiles. Other businesses would manufacture shoes, saddles, harnesses, lumber, boxes, bricks, carriages and bicycles. In 1836, the last schoonerwas launched at Exeter. In 1840, the Boston & Maine Railroadentered the town.
According to former governor
Hugh Gregg, the United States Republican Partywas born in Exeter on October 12, 1853at the Squamscott Hotel, but nothing came of the secret meeting of Amos Tuckwith other abolitionists that day, and the party was not organized in the state until 1856. Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican president, visited Exeter in 1860. His son, Robert Todd Lincoln, was attending Phillips Exeter Academy, the college preparatory school founded in 1781 by Dr. John Phillips. The town was also once home to the Robinson Female Seminary, established in 1867 and previously known as the Exeter Female Academy (established in 1826). Its landmark Second Empireschoolhouse, completed in 1869, burned in 1961.
In September 1965 Exeter earned a place in
UFOhistory when two Exeter police officers, Eugene Bertrand and David Hunt, witnessed a bright red UFO at close range with a local teenager, Norman Muscarello. Their sighting attracted national publicity and became the focus of a bestselling book, " Incident at Exeter", by journalist John G. Fuller. The Air Force eventually admitted to the three men that it had been unable to identify the strange object they had observed, and it is still considered by many UFO buffs to be one of the most impressive UFO sightings on record.
Exeter has a considerable inventory of structures by prominent
architects. Arthur Gilman, descendant of one of Exeter's founding families, designed the Old Town Hall of 1855. The Old Public Library of 1894, which now is home to the Exeter Historical Society, was designed by the Bostonfirm of Rotch & Tilden. Ralph Adams Cram, who trained with Rotch & Tilden, designed both Phillips Church, built in 1897, and Tuck High School, built in 1911. His firm of Cram & Ferguson designed the entire Phillips Exeter Academy campus between 1908 and 1950. More recent is the noted Academy Library, built in 1971 to the design of Louis I. Kahn. Daniel Chester French, sculptor and Exeter native, created the town's war memorial in 1922. He is best known for his statue of Abraham Lincoln in Washington at the Lincoln Memorial, which was designed by Henry Bacon, who also designed in 1916 the Swasey Pavilion at Exeter's town square.
Other features of the town include the Swasey Parkway, which replaced wharves and
warehouses along the Squamscott River, and the Ioka Theatre of 1915 on Water Street. The latter was built by Edward Mayer, an Exeter judge and resident. Although frequently referred to as the nephew of Hollywood mogul Louis B. Mayer, genealogical research does not connect the two families.Fact|date=March 2007 Edward Mayer's opening feature was " The Birth of a Nation", by D. W. Griffith. The theatre's curious name was proposed in a contest by a young woman with an enthusiasm for Scouting. Ioka was a Native American word meaning playground.
* Patrick Baril (
Statik Selektah), acclaimed hip-hop DJ & producer
* Charles H. Bell, governor
Dan Brown, author: " The Da Vinci Code"
Lewis Cass, politician
Chris Carpenter, major league baseball pitcher, 2005 All-Star, 2005 NL Cy Young Award
Henry Alexander Scammell Dearborn, statesman & soldier
Samuel Dudley, (1608-1683), early Puritanminister, Exeter, son of Governor Thomas Dudleyof the Massachusetts Bay Colony[ [http://www.hampton.lib.nh.us/HAMPTON/history/probate/samueldudley1682.htm Probate of Will of Samuel Dudley of Exeter, 1682/3, Lane Memorial Library, Hampton, N.H., www.hampton.lib.nh.us] ]
Darby Field, first European to climb Mount Washington in 1642.
Nathaniel Folsom, merchant, general & statesman
Daniel Chester French, sculptor
John Taylor Gilman, statesman & governor
Nicholas Gilman, Jr., signer of U.S. Constitution
John Irving, author: " The World According to Garp"
John Knowles, author: " A Separate Peace"
Dudley Leavitt (publisher), (1750-1831) born in Exeter, publisher of Leavitt's "Farmers Almanack and Miscellaneous Yearbook", Meredith, New Hampshire[ [http://books.google.com/books?id=wYAM_Sd9T2EC&pg=PA8&dq=%22dudley+leavitt%22+exeter&lr=&ei=x1TZSOr3LY3gswOgzujeDg Memorials of Meredith, New Hampshire, Franklin P. Rice, Massachusetts Record Society, Worcester, 1891] ]
Moses Leavitt(1650-1730), surveyor, Selectman, Deputy, Moderator of the General Court, son-in-law of Rev. Samuel Dudley, Exeter [ [http://books.google.com/books?id=LBQFAAAAYAAJ&pg=RA1-PA386&lpg=RA1-PA386&dq=%22moses+levet%22+exeter&source=web&ots=t6B2i6msP-&sig=g7yKMVxdMUp2QjOHaKKxmhV9Rdw&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=1&ct=result Calendar of State Papers, August 7, 1699, Colonial Series, Cecil Headlam (ed.), Great Britain Public Record Office, Printed for His Majesty's Stationery Office, Fleet Street, London, 1908] ]
Gilman Marston, politician & general
Dr. John Phillips, founder of Phillips Exeter Academy
Enoch Poor, shipbuilder, merchant & general
Tristram Shaw, United States Representativefrom New Hampshire
Henry Shute, lawyer, judge, & author
Isabella Soprano, American pornographic actress and reality TV star ("Cathouse: The Series")
Amos Tuck, lawyer & politician
Edward Tuck, banker & philanthropist
John Wheelwright, founder of Exeter
According to the
United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of convert|20.0|sqmi|km2, of which convert|19.6|sqmi|km2|abbr=on is land and convert|0.4|sqmi|km2|abbr=on is water, comprising 1.85% of the town. Exeter is drained by the Exeter River, which feeds the Squamscott River. The highest point in Exeter is convert|250|ft|m above sea levelon Great Hill at the town's southwest corner. Exeter lies fully within the Piscataqua River(Coastal) watershed.cite book |title=Water Use in New Hampshire: An Activities Guide for Teachers |url=http://nh.water.usgs.gov/Publications/nh.intro.html |last=Foster |first=Debra H. |coauthors=Batorfalvy, Tatianna N.; and Medalie, Laura |publisher=U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. Geological Survey |year=1995]
The town's center, defined as a
census-designated place(CDP), has a total area of convert|4.5|sqmi|km2, of which convert|4.4|sqmi|km2|abbr=on is land and convert|0.2|sqmi|km2|abbr=on (3.74%) is water.
As of the
censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 14,058 people, 5,898 households, and 3,715 families residing in the town. The population densitywas 715.9 people per square mile (276.4/km²). There were 6,107 housing units at an average density of 311.0/sq mi (120.1/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 97.18% White, 0.42% African American, 0.17% Native American, 0.94% Asian, 0.29% from other races, and 1.00% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.87% of the population.
There were 5,898 households out of which 31.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.0% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.0% were non-families. 31.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.94.
In the town the population was spread out with 24.2% under the age of 18, 5.0% from 18 to 24, 29.8% from 25 to 44, 24.0% from 45 to 64, and 17.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 89.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.4 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $49,618, and the median income for a family was $63,088. Males had a median income of $45,091 versus $30,435 for females. The
per capita incomefor the town was $27,105. About 2.9% of families and 5.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.8% of those under age 18 and 4.5% of those age 65 or over.
As of the
censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 9,759 people, 4,233 households, and 2,539 families residing in the central urban settlement. The population densitywas 2,230.4 people per square mile (860.3/km²). There were 4,376 housing units at an average density of 1,000.1/sq mi (385.7/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 97.21% White, 0.46% Black or African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.92% Asian, 0.22% from other races, and 0.98% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.77% of the population.
There were 4,233 households out of which 29.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.1% were married couples living together, 9.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.0% were non-families. 33.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.92.
In the CDP the population was spread out with 23.7% under the age of 18, 5.2% from 18 to 24, 31.5% from 25 to 44, 23.8% from 45 to 64, and 15.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 89.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.4 males.
The median income for a household in the CDP was $44,279, and the median income for a family was $53,174. Males had a median income of $41,760 versus $30,000 for females. The
per capita incomefor the CDP was $24,663. About 4.1% of families and 7.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.8% of those under age 18 and 5.8% of those age 65 or over.
Exeter (Amtrak station)
Sites of interest
* [http://www.independencemuseum.org/ American Independence Museum]
* [http://www.christchurchexeter.org/ Christ Episcopal Church] , founded 1865
* [http://www.exeterhistory.org The Exeter Historical Society & Museum]
* [http://www.historicnewengland.org/visit/homes/gilman.htm Gilman Garrison House] (1709)
* [http://www.exeter.edu/ Phillips Exeter Academy]
* [http://town.exeter.nh.us Town website]
* [http://www.sau16.org/ SAU16 Exeter Area School District]
* [http://www.exeterpl.org/ Exeter Public Library]
* [http://www.nh.gov/nhes/elmi/htmlprofiles/exeter.html New Hampshire Economic and Labor Market Information Bureau Profile]
* [http://www.seacoastnh.com/Famous_People/Framers_of_Freedom/The_Gilmans_of_Exeter/ The Gilmans of Exeter, Nancy Merrill, seacoastnh.com]
* "Ports of Piscataqua: Soundings in the Maritime History of the Portsmouth, N.H., Customs District from the Days of Queen Elizabeth and the Planting of Strawberry Banke to the Times of Abraham Lincoln and the Waning of the American Clipper", William Gurdon Saltonstall, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1941
* "History of the Town of Exeter, New Hampshire", Charles H. Bell, Reprinted by Heritage Books, 1990
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