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  1. #1
    us
    Aug 2005
    NH
    2,285
    16 times

    Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    Anyone ever check this site out?



    The Ghost Town of Hill
    What Happened Here?
    It was incorporated in 1753 as New Chester by several men living in Chester, who bought 30,000 acres as speculation. During the 1830s, the townspeople learned that there were a least 100 communities in the country with the name "Chester", and they wanted to be different so they renamed the town Hill, after the then current governor, Isaac Hill. The Pemigewasset River, along side which the town was originally built, is a major tributary of the Merrimack River, which provided water and power for the many textile mills in southern New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. The Pemigewasset was prone to flooding because it had to carry off the melting snow from the White Mountains. In order to control this situation, the Army Corps of Engineers proposed in 1937 to build a flood control dam a few miles south of the village. The federal government offered to buy the individual properties, but many of the townspeople wanted to maintain their identity instead of having to move to other communities, and voted to relocate the town when the government also offered to pay to move houses to the new site. Fourteen buildings were moved to higher ground, using railroad winches and horses. The new village was actually established in 1941.
    How to get there:
    There is a sign near the post office which gives a brief history of the town flooding and relocation. The area behind the post office is NEW Hill not OLD Hill. Also it says that it is located on Rt4. While you can get to Hill on Rt4, the post office is actually on Rt3a. To get to old hill, drive about 1 mile past the post office on Rt3a (going North, the post office is on the right). Take a right on Old Town Road (appropriately named). Drive past the cemetery on the left. The street will end at the entrance to the old town. Shop Rd. will be behind to the right. Park there and walk past the road block. Cross the foot bridge and your there. There are two major areas of the defunct town. The first "neighborhood" is on the immediate left, next to the river. Cut through the brush down to the edge of the cliff (a sharp drop of about 30 feet). There are a dozen or so foundations with a rusted sewer pipe running through them all, very cool. On the path above someone has placed a marker indicating the various high water marks. You could see how this seasonal flooding could have destroyed the town. At the bottom of this "road" is the other "neighborhood." This is the intersection which would have been the center of town. Turn left and you will cross a turn-of-century bridge. The state has posted weight limits for this bridge. Someone uses the sign for target practice. The road continues in this direction for several miles, we did not walk to the end. Keep your eyes open and you should find a on old, rusted bicycle. Turn right at the intersection and you should find crumbling sidewalks on either side. Creepy. Walk on the sidewalks and at you will see many of the old foundations and crumbling steps. There are also railings and barbwire fences that trees have grown around. The road continues in this direction for several miles, we did not follow it to the end. The sidewalks continue for quite some distance. There are small stone makers with letters on them. They look recent and may be part of some preservation effort. The foundations are covered by heavy brush in summer. May be easier to see during the fall. The fields and woods around the town are a wildlife preserve, this is posted everywhere.

    some pics at:
    http://www.ghosttowns.com/states/nh/hill.html

    Me thinks this could be an interesting place
    When you get into a tight place and everything goes against
    you till it seems you could not hold on a minute longer,
    never give up then for that is just the place and time that
    the tide will turn.

    Harriet Beecher Stowe

  2. #2
    hu
    Gypsyheart~ Queen of Rust

    Nov 2005
    Ozarks
    12,686
    266 times

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    Looks like it has real potential! I hope you are able to hunt it.
    I go a great distance,while some are considering whether they will start today or tomorrow

  3. #3
    us
    Jul 2008
    Raymond, New Hampshire
    Fisher F75
    1

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    Cannot do this town, Army Corps of Engineers will ask you to leave. There is no metal detecting there or at the Blackwater Dam area.

  4. #4
    us
    Feb 2010
    Formerly NH now East Tennessee
    Garrett GtaX1250
    3,385
    3128 times

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    Sorry for dragging up a fairly old post but this info is current. Been there detecting many times over the past few years. The generic Corps of Engineers sign at the entrance says that metal detecting is allowed but anything "historic" has to be turned in. Many miles of the old road through the center of town as well as side streets all overgrown still exist. Corps of Engineers mows the fields somewhat regularly and one area we found tons of fired blank shell casings on both sides of the main street and a spent smoke grenade. It seems the National Guard uses the area for war games. The "no detecting" thing with the Corps of Engineers seems to be at the rangers discretion. On a couple of occasions I had one stop in his GI issue Chevy Blazer & ask if I had any luck & one showed me the way to the old town dump. On another occasion I got the "no metal detecting allowed" speech from a ranger I had never seen before or since, and on most occasions I never saw another soul other than locals walking their dogs or just out for a walk. I have had very spotty luck finding anything at all and I believe that's due to a combination of heavy flooding in the early Spring, tall grass most of the time and the fact that easily accessable areas have been hunted pretty hard over the years. The oldest part of town (1700s) is down along the river and when the water level is very low foundations & sometimes old broken bottles can be seen. The local Hill library has a couple of good pampthlets with maps and the historical society published a book. So it's far from being a secret and you're likely to spend a day & find very little if anything but walking the old streets and imagining how it once was is a great way to spend a day even if you leave the detector in the car. Here is a post card from the 1930s and a picture I took of the same area last year. Be advised if you wander off the main street there is poison ivy, lots of ticks, and the very real possibility of stepping into an old abandoned open well. This is a very large area and you could easily spend every day there for a month and not explore it all. The last time I was there prior to moving to Tennessee I found a large piece of babbit metal slag in the area where the railroad depot & repair shop was located. There once were several churches, gas station, general store, schools & factories as well as a large railroad station and in the 40s it was all either moved to the site of the new town or destroyed when the Franklin Falls Dam was built.
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    Live Free or Die

  5. #5
    us
    Feb 2010
    Formerly NH now East Tennessee
    Garrett GtaX1250
    3,385
    3128 times

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    Map of Main Street and a pic of the babbit metal slag I found. It was commonly used as bearing material for the wheels & other moving parts on trains and is a fairly common find near old railroad yards. When you find a chunk this size it about blows your headphones off your head.. It looks the way it does because they replace it by melting the old babbitt out of the parts and when it hits the ground it cools with the rough texture of the dirt on the bottom but fairly smooth on top.
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    Live Free or Die

  6. #6
    us
    Aug 2005
    NH
    2,285
    16 times

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    Bandit,

    I have not detected here, but have partied at Profile falls

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    When you get into a tight place and everything goes against
    you till it seems you could not hold on a minute longer,
    never give up then for that is just the place and time that
    the tide will turn.

    Harriet Beecher Stowe

  7. #7
    us
    Aug 2005
    NH
    2,285
    16 times

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    ....
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    When you get into a tight place and everything goes against
    you till it seems you could not hold on a minute longer,
    never give up then for that is just the place and time that
    the tide will turn.

    Harriet Beecher Stowe

  8. #8
    us
    Feb 2010
    Formerly NH now East Tennessee
    Garrett GtaX1250
    3,385
    3128 times

    Re: Northeast/NH hunters....The Ghost Town of Hill

    LOL.. That gives me the idea of hitting some of my old party spots from my younger days but it might be a bit difficult since I moved to East Tennessee a couple months ago. No more frozen ground for 4 months out of the year but now I need to find new spots to detect.
    Live Free or Die

  9. #9
    us
    Mar 2014
    New Hampshire
    Bounty Hunter VLF
    16
    5 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Thank you for the info i live close by never thought of it but i am now . will let you know how i do still snow here so lots of time to check it out. thanks again

  10. #10
    us
    Feb 2010
    Formerly NH now East Tennessee
    Garrett GtaX1250
    3,385
    3128 times
    Quote Originally Posted by kimosarbe View Post
    Thank you for the info i live close by never thought of it but i am now . will let you know how i do still snow here so lots of time to check it out. thanks again
    Stop in at the Hill library. They have little booklets that were printed by the Hill historical society with maps of the old village. Good luck.
    Live Free or Die

  11. #11

    Mar 2014
    1
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Back 20 or so years ago there weren't any gates or block Mounds you could drive up Rt. 3A and drive right into old Hill Village all the way to the town of Hill on Rt3A. Total trip was guessing 6-7 miles. Never gave exploring a thought. Live to far away now, AZ. Maybe someday when I go back to NH I'll rent a 4x4 and take a ride.

 

 

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