Explore New Hampshire's Past
Reading historical fiction allows us to walk in the past, no matter where we find ourselves physically in the world. There is something magical about traveling to locations that embody the spirit of the story and the soul of the characters. Places where we can feast our senses in the settings from which our favorite characters emerged. Come visit New Hampshire's rural past. and experience the lives of Margery, Samuell, Agnes, Joseph, and the other Pauper Auction characters.
Paul Wainwright's book of fine black & white large-format photographs showcases the beauty and history of the few remaining Colonial Meetinghouses in New England. His website identifies and describes these archeological and cultural treasures. Visit a New Hampshire meetinghouse and imagine you are at the Thorneboro Town Meeting as imagined in Pauper Auction.
10,000 years before the arrival of European settlers arrived, Indigenous people called the area now known as New Hampshire their home. When Pauper Auction opens in 1805, 90% of the region’s First Nation people had died of western diseases, become enslaved, or been forcibly relocated. The two First Nation tribes in the area were the Abenaki and Western Penncook. Sozap Wzo̱kihlain Chouteau, also known as Joseph in the story, is a member of the Abenaki of Québec, one of Quebec’s First Nations. Abenaki means “people of the dawn.” One place to learn more about Joseph's culture and the artistic expression, traditional values, and contributions of Native people's in New Hampshire is at the Kearsarge Indian Museum.
New Hampshire Historical Society and Town Historical Societies
The New Hampshire Historical Society offers exhibitions and collections, a research library, genealogy resources, and publications. Town historical societies are underutilized treasures. State and town records of NH Town Meeting proceedings from the 1700 and 1800s document the bidding out of indigent residents as featured in Pauper Auction.
As rock wall historian and landscape geologist Dr. Robert Thornson writes, stone walls are "damn near everywhere" in the forests of rural New England. In the late 1800s, there were over 240,000 miles of stone walls in New England. Thornson estimates there might be 100,000 miles still out there, many now buried below the surface. Perhaps the most famous stone wall in New Hampshire is the "Mending Wall" at the Robert Frost Farm in Derry. As the poem reminds us, "Good fences make good neighbors." To see stone walls similar to those gracing Wheeler Farm in Pauper Auction, just drive around the state!
Apple Orchards and Cider
Apple orchards and cideries abound in New Hampshire, many featuring heirloom or 'antique' apple varieties, such as the onles grown in Samuell's orchard in Pauper Auction. Fall is the obvious season for picking and ciderpressing. New Hampshire is one of many states experiencing a hard cider renaissance and you can create your own hard cider trail from the two dozen cideries calling New Hampshire home.
New Hampshire History Blog
Cow Hampshire is the blog of all blogs for all things New Hampshire history and genealogy. For the past 15 years, Janice Brown has been posting articles about and images from New Hampshire's past. Her compilation of historical and genealogical research and reference links is extensive.
This exhaustive Regional Resource & Referral Guide on NH Museums & Historic Sites has been complied by the NH Granite State Ambassadors program.