Newfields, New Hampshire

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Newfields is a town in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 1,551 at the 2000 census. The 2009 population was estimated to be 1,670.[1] Newfields is a quaint village of handsome old houses.

Contents

History

Incorporated in 1849, Newfields was part of Exeter until 1727, when it became part of Newmarket. Settled in 1638, it was called Newfield Village as early as 1681, and later South Newmarket, a parish of that town. Garrison houses, built as protection against Indian attack, were not uncommon. Among the earliest tithingmen in the village were Jonathan Robinson (1678), Abraham and Jeremiah Folsom (1720), Andrew Glidden (1721), Trueworthy Leavitt (1725), Samuel Edgerly (1728), Nathaniel Gilman (1729) and Nathaniel Webster (1729).[2]

In 1775, a bridge was built across the Squamscott River connecting the community with Stratham. This shortened the journey to Exeter, established that year as the Revolutionary capital. But the new route bypassed the center of town, built on either side of an ancient Squamscot Indian trail. This preserved old Newfields.

Wesleyan Academy was established here in 1817, a Methodist school of 5 boys and 5 girls under the tutelage of Reverend John Brodhead and others. Coeducation was then rather advanced. Unfortunately, the academy struggled financially from the start because of, as administrators would conclude, "...its location in a setting of relatively few Methodists, of limited means..." And so, in 1825, it removed to Wilbraham, Massachusetts. The academy's site is now occupied by the Newfields Elementary School.

In 1841, the Boston and Maine Railroad extended service to the community. In 1880, Dr. John M. Brodhead presented his own library and $10,000 to the town on condition that it be renamed Newfields. The town was so incorporated in 1895.

Gallery

Main Street

Newfields Country Store

Town landing

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 7.2 square miles (18.6 km2), of which 7.0 sq mi (18.1 km2) is land and 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2) is water, comprising 2.23% of the town. It is drained by the Piscassic River, a tributary of the Lamprey River, and bounded to the east by the Squamscott River. The highest point in Newfields is the summit of Oakland Hill at 240 feet (73 m) above sea level, on the town's southern border.

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