Friday, October 12, 2012

Portsmouth, NH and the "Strawbery Banke Museum"



I can't believe I went to the charming town of Portsmouth, New Hampshire almost a year ago today, and never had the chance to blog about it! My husband had to attend a business meeting there for a couple days last year, and I went along, as I love this town! Portsmouth, N.H., a city of roughly 21,000 people, sits near the mouth of the Piscataqua River, a short, wide river that divides New Hampshire and Maine. As an historic New England seaport city, it is a popular tourist destination full of wonderful restaurants, shopping and scenic venues.


Settled in 1623, Portsmouth claims to be the nation's third-oldest city. The original New Hampshire State House is located on Market Square in Portsmouth. It can be seen above as the building with large windows and chimneys on top.


As you can see by its identifying plaque it was the seat of colonial government from 1758-1776. The American Declaration of Independence was read from the building on July 18, 1776. Also, President George Washington spoke from the balcony on October 31, 1789. 


Do pirates now ride motorcycles? It seems Portsmouth is also a town full of fun surprises!





The beautiful and historic "Strawbery Banke Museum" (*note-the unusual spelling is not a typographical error) village is located in Portsmouth, and we had the opportunity to visit the area and take a tour.

The museum's web site states:

"Originally named Strawbery Banke by early (1630) British settlers for the wild berries growing there, Strawbery Banke today is unique among outdoor history museums - tracing 375 years of history in one of America's oldest continuously occupied neighborhoods. The 10-acre site, with its authentically restored houses and shops, period gardens, and costumed role players, presents the daily lives of ordinary people who lived here - from Colonial times to World War II, from the mundane to the elegant, from economic boom to war time austerity - in engaging and accessible ways. Strawbery Banke Museum is a capsule of New England seaport life across four centuries."





"Strawbery Banke is unique among outdoor history museums in presenting a authentic neighborhood, with most of the 42 historic buildings on their original foundations. These structures, the earliest dating to 1695, provide our strongest link to the lives of the people who lived in this neighborhood. Some of the houses have been restored and furnished to particular periods in the past; some are used for exhibits on such special themes as architecture or archaeology; still others serve as shops for artisans practicing traditional trades."

By the way - all the photos in this post can be enlarged by clicking on them once, and then again when they open on a new page.  You can view much more detail in these photo collages by enlarging them that way.  Use the back arrow to return to my post after viewing the enlargements.




Although the historical re-enactors were not there the day we visited, as it was off season, house tours were still available, and we saw homes decorated as they would have been over the four centuries this area was a thriving community.



One of my favorite rooms was this 1940's era kitchen!  It reminded me so much of my maternal grandmother's kitchen, as I remember it when I was a child. She had almost the same black, wood and coal burning cast iron stove.  The radio on the desk on the right was playing old time radio show tape--it was so warm and cozy and wonderfully nostalgic!






Another favorite building was the "Little Corner Store" that was next door to the country kitchen I showed above.  Again, it reminded me of visiting my grandmother, who lived in a small town in Pennsylvania during my childhood. There was a small store, very much like this one, on her corner.  My grandmother always gave each of her grandchildren a quarter when we visited, which felt like a fortune.  As young children my siblings and I used to be able to buy a large Nestle candy bar for only five cents! Are you old enough to remember penny candy?  I never thought I'd be old enough to say this, but: "Those were the days!"








Of course, visiting a location in New England in autumn is a very special treat because of all the magnificent fall color that is everywhere, and Portsmouth, NH was no exception!  I "oohed and aahed" everywhere we went that day.  Did you notice the "face" in one of the Strawbery Banke Museum house windows above? Halloween had just passed, and a museum staff member must have had a sense of humor to leave that image peeking out the window!



There are some wonderful historic lighthouses in this area of New England, and, as I am a lighthouse aficionado, I was fortunate to have a co-worker of my husband take us around to view them! Above is a distant view of the Whaleback Lighthouse located in the mouth of the Piscataqua River, nearest to Kittery, Maine.


This lighthouse was established in 1830; the present granite lighthouse was built in 1872, and it was automated in 1963. This lighthouse can be seen from many spots on shore, including Fort Foster in Kittery, Fort Constitution, Fort Stark, and Great Island Common in New Castle, NH, and Odiorne Point in Rye, NH. The lighthouse is accessible only by boat and is closed to the public.


Even in early November a few wild pink roses were still blooming in the area along the coastline! The North East experienced a very mild winter last year. I'd love to show you more about the other lighthouses we saw in a future post... please stayed tuned!


I'm adding this post to the following blog events:

Pink Saturday
Seasonal Sunday
Mosaic Monday
Blue Monday
Our World Tuesday
Outdoor Wednesday

Many thanks to all the blog hosts!


  Bookmark and Share Pin It

66 comments:

Vee said...

Wonderful photos! I sat back in my seat when I saw that ghoulie looking at me. I'd had no prior warning you see! =D

Too bad that you could not have been there longer. I would've made every effort to meet you there.

Claudia said...

I was in Portsmouth (and at the museum) in June and will definitely go back there. It was a stopover for Maine but charmed in its own right. And we ate well! What a beautiful write-up.

podso said...

Beautiful and interesting post. Pat. I never realized that town was really a town of such a relatively small population. thinking it more of a city. This is such a colorful post, your pictures are definitely autumn! Have a good weekend! Hope the packing is going well.

GailO said...

I don't live too far away from here and I have never been...now I know I will have to go!

camp and cottage living said...

I've always wanted to visit and learn more about our nations history. And this trip was so rich with it.
Thanks for taking us along!

Betsy Adams said...

Hi Pat, Thanks for sharing Portsmouth, New Hampshire with us... What a neat little town... I'd love to visit that museum...

I also love lighthouses --and probably would 'collect' them if I weren't collecting waterfalls... ha

Have a great weekend/week. How's the house sale going?
Hugs,
Betsy

Riet said...

How beautiful, all the old buildings and houses. Oh and the inside of the houses, I love those, that kitchen indeed feels so warm. ThaT country looks so beautiful, wish I could go there and look. Have a nice weekend Pat.Are you busy packing yet?

Marina PĂ©rez said...

Hi Pat, my name is Marina and I live in the south of Spain, my daughter Marina Junior loves New York, she is twelve and from seven more or less says she want to live in Manhattan so I have no option, I'm your new follower
Marina

ellen b. said...

What a charming place to visit! Glad you pulled out your photos to share.

annie said...

New Hampshire is wonderful. I really like it there.
Wouldn't mind living there either.
You took some lovely photos and I am so glad you shared them.
Have a lovely, peaceful weekend Pat.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Pat - What a treat to visit New England in the fall, even if it was last year. I'm glad you thought to post them now. Yes, I do remember penny candy. My grandparents (in Pa.) lived right next door to a neighborhood store where I used to peruse the card aisle and spend lots of time deciding on the candy. Hope the packing/selling is going well.

SmilingSally said...

Oh Pat, you'd make a wonderful history teacher!

That stove was just like my maternal grandmother's! Do you think we might be cousins?

Happy Pink Saturday, Pat.

Old Kitty said...

I'm in awe at the biker man riding his bike with the parrot!! That's one big gorgeous beautiful and very valuable parrot!

Strawberry Banke is totally amazing!! What a great place and look at all these beautiful houses!! And there's a gorgeous black cat too! And the skull peeking out is hilarious! Perfect for Halloween!

I love that the store is well stocked with period groceries! LOL! I can see the Colemans mustard - I think it's Colemans!

Thanks for sharing these pics and your wonderful memories!

Take care
x

Johanna said...

Thank you for sharing! Love it all. Happy Pink Saturday!

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Look at those old stoves! The parrot on the biker guy is pretty cool and I love that cute lighthouse:@)

Emily said...

Oh Pat, what an amazing place! I love these historical homes and the peek into our history they provide. It's especially beautiful in the fall. Beautiful photos, I enjoyed the tour.

Emily
The French Hutch

Pamela Gordon said...

I really enjoyed this post Pat. I love old historical villages and have heard of Strawberry Banke. We have driven through Portland many times and even been there and Kittery to shop but I have never been to this museum. It will definitely be a must see the next time we go that way to shop. Your mosaics are beautiful and i love the fall colours. Thanks for sharing the history of this beautiful city of Portland.

Jil~Say It With Roses said...

What wonderful pictures and write up about this historic town. I enjoyed learning about this beautiful town and all it has to offer!
♥ Jil

Sarah said...

Thanks for taking us along, Pat. New England in the fall is full of beauty.

The Quintessential Magpie said...

I enjoyed this tour, Pat, and getting to see the lovely NE leaves. It's a gorbeous little town. We were there one summer and enoyed a quick visit. Loved the fact that you shared more wtih us. THANKS.

XO,

Sheila

Cheryl @ TFD said...

Pat, I have really enjoyed this post! Thanks for this tour of part of New England. It is beautiful there! I was really interested in the historic village. That is just the kind of place I'd love to visit. And, yes, I'm old enough to remember nickel candy bars and penny candy!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Kris said...

Hi Pat...that was fun. I have a friend who lives there!!!
: ) Kris

Jojo said...

A beautiful fall post and I loved seeing the lighthouse.

eileeninmd said...

Pat, looks like a wonderful trip. I enjoyed the photos and the tour. I really love the macaw with the man on the motorcycle. And the trees are a gorgeous color. Thanks for sharing, have a great weekend! BTW, Congrats to the Yankees!

CailinMarie said...

WOW! This is a lovely tour of Portsmouth, having never been I enjoyed ever bit of your post. Thank you so much! Visiting via Pink Saturday-

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

New England in the fall is so beautiful. I love all of the old colonial buildings. It's been far too long since we've been to that area. Thanks for taking us along Pat. I needed this.
Sam

diane b said...

A lovely historic area. I have always enjoyed seeing pictures of New England in Fall and wished that I could go there one day. You were lucky to see it. The houses are so historic and memory joggers.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

What a beautiful and historic place to visit. And you can't beat the foliage in that part of the world!

I quite like the 1940's era kitchen as well...love all those all things from day gone by. The cabinets...the old pressure cooker on the right...and the worn linoleum floor...are all memories of by-gone days.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

What a beautiful and historic place to visit. And you can't beat the foliage in that part of the world!

I quite like the 1940's era kitchen as well...love all those all things from day gone by. The cabinets...the old pressure cooker on the right...and the worn linoleum floor...are all memories of by-gone days.

Jo May said...

This maybe the only way I ever get to see this wonderful place,thanks for sharing.Wish I was strolling around looking around right now,I'm sure I'd be doing the same O's an ah's.

The Gathering Place said...

What a quaint town and such beautiful fall colors as well. I'd love to visit there some day.

Susie said...

Pat, I have to say...every time I read your blog, I feel as if I have gone on a trip. Or it makes me want to go on a trip :):) You have the best photos. Hope your weekend is great. I am settling down to listen to the rain. Smiles, Susie

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

Now I want to go visit NH again! Besides visiting the Pennycook Island (with the statue of my famous ancestor Hannah Dustin) and having an amazing seafood dinner in Rye I haven't really explored the state. My DIL graduated from U of NH; I will have to show her this beautiful post!

Lea Ann said...

Thanks for taking us on such a great tour. Really beautiful photos and I love your collages. You're going to have to teach me how to make them. This is exactly why I haven't posted many Fall photos of Colorado. Even though stunning, they're nothing like East Coast colors.

Chubskulit Rose said...

Simply gorgeous! I am the featured blog this week, hope you can drop by.

Pumpkin Fun
Have an enjoyable pumpkin-licious weekend!

Betsy Brock said...

What a beautiful place! I love the style and those classic colors....so charming!

Mary said...

So picturesque and such beautiful fall color Pat! Every year my husband and I say we're going to New England for a fall leaf tour but something comes up. Love the wonderful lighthouse!

From Beyond My Kitchen Window said...

What a great post. Your photos have captured Portsmouth beautifully. I live less than 50 minutes from Portsmouth NH and love everything about it. We will be going in a few weeks.

Karen Harris said...

Great post. I almost hate to admit it, but yes I am old enough to remember penny candy . . . just barely! I love that kitchen too. I'd like to cook in each era of kitchen starting with Victorian. I don't have the nerve for anything older.

Pondside said...

What a beautiful place. I especially love the old-fashioned bedrooms - so pretty and cosy.

AshTreeCottage said...

I have been to Portsmouth several times and just love it!
Thanks for the armchair visit.

Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes said...

I couldn't tell you how any times I've been through Portsmouth! I used to make frequent trips for dinner, bars, walking around or just passing through!

I drive over the Piscataqua river/bridge each time we go to Maine! Next time you're in the area give me a jingle!

I love seeing my 'hood through your eyes!

Penny @ The Comforts of Home/From Harvest To Table said...

What a beautiful town. I would enjoy visiting there. Yes, I do remember penny candy. We used to walk a mile on a dirt road to the local mom and pop store every Saturday with our 25 cents to buy candy!

Hope your house sells soon, so you can move to Colorado!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

What fabulous photos! We love visiting old historic down towns! I've heard of this place and read about it in history but never visited. Sweet hugs!

A Garden of Threads said...

I enjoyed the tour, especially the inside of the historic rooms. Have a great week:)

Lorrie Orr said...

So much history back east! I love all of it, but my favourite photos are those of the lighthouse - so beautiful.

Tracy said...

Better late than never, Pat--and enjoyed every moment, as well as the autumn color! And must say that man on the motorcycle with his parrot is fantastic! haha... Happy Days ((HUGS))

Gardening in a Sandbox said...

I always enjoy the thouroughness of your posts and the lovely pictures to make the point. What a lovely historic place to visit and yes I am old enough to remember some of those items in homes of my youth. Valerie

Cafe au lait said...

Beautiful pics! My Blue Monday are here and here.

cassandrasminicorner said...

Awesome! Great information, thank's for sharing..

Visiting from Blue Monday- hope you can stop by..

http://www.cassandrasminicorner.com/2012/10/photo-with-my-baby.html

Kris said...

Hi Pat,
I just saw your question regarding my cowls. I have been away this weekend, so I am catching up now. You asked about the gray one? The one pictured, which is an infinity scarf, but can be wound up around the neck as a cowl too, is 25.00 plus shipping. The thicker one, is 40.00. It is done in the same braided stitch, but uses more yarn.
You must need to wear these kinds of things every time you step outside in your New York winters. And I suspect CO will be much the same!!!
Let me know!!!
Hugs,
Kris

shutterbuggbitten said...

What a fun historical post! I love all the images you've shared. It certainly makes me want to travel.

Lovella ♥ said...

Pat, those photos are so amazing. I loved the museum and the little corners inside. The coloring of the trees is just so lovely there. I feel like every place I visit in blogland is calling me to come to their corner of the world in Autumn.

The Tablescaper said...

Lovely armchair visit!

- The Tablescaper

Linda Kittmer said...

I've had fun travelling vicariously via your wonderful collages! Beautiful photos!

Donna said...

Beautiful photos, Pat! I would love visiting there. The historic houses are wonderful, and everything is so colorful!

Hugs,
Donna

Cindy said...

What a fabulously picturesque place to visit. So much nostalgia going on! I love the old houses, I enlarged them as suggested and they are all beautiful. The interiors are very lovely, too. The kitchen reminds me of a home that I visited as a teenager, they always had tea and cookies waiting and I sat around a table like that and visited with a couple that were in their 70's. I loved those people, they always took time out for me. I would love to find a table and chairs like that for my kitchen.
The lighthouses are magnificent, I always love to see them. There are several on the Washington coast.
Hugs, Cindy

Lisa @ Grandmas Briefs said...

Such a treat to find in your vault of photos. A beautiful trip. Love the country store, and yes I do remember penny candy. Lovely collages. So much history out east. I truly hope to one day visit many of the places you've introduced me to through this incredible blog of yours. ♥

Judy SheldonWalker said...

Wonderful wonderful shots!! I don't know how you took so many in just 2 days. :-)

I had to visit your blog when I saw Brklyn, NY as I was stationed there a lifetime ago.

Anna said...

Such a beautiful post and I have enjoyed it very much, Pat!
Warm greetings, Anna

Barb said...

A charming look-back at history. The landscape was stunning, too.

Jim said...

Top shots.

bettyl said...

Wonderful photos. I love them all!

Linda (More Fun Less Laundry) said...

Hi Pat! We love Portsmouth and stop there often on our way to and from Maine. Several years ago we went to Strawbery Bank (well, maybe 10!) to attend an American Girl Doll event, and it was superb! The guests (and all the little girls with their Molly dolls) were treated as if it was 1942, with the war on. We ate in the kitchens, collected metal scraps, and even had a bomb drill, when we were put into a bomb shelter. German subs actually were heard quite often at night off the coast of Portsmouth! We really enjoyed it. I think that the unique feature of Strawbery Banke is that it does span so many decades, and is not just a snapshot in time. Thank you for the wonderful pictures and tour. I really enjoyed it. Linda

M.C.Diana Degadong said...

Beautiful pictures and views...it is hard to pick which pictures are my fave :-) Dropping by from Blue Monday :-)

http://travelercarmeldiana.blogspot.com/2012/10/my-adventure-continues-at-dahilayan.html

Jenny said...

I haven't been to Portsmouth in many years, but I remember it as being incredibly beautiful!