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Overview

Dover started its life as a thriving river port town in the 17th century, grew into a successful center of cotton manufacturing and has evolved into a prosperous community supported by diverse industry, in particular the insurance industry. The Woodman Institute is an intriguing museum of local history and curiosities that occupies four buildings on the south end of the city. The most remarkable of these are an original 1675 fortified house and the Woodman Institute museum, reminiscent of a 19th-century cabinet of curiosities, filled with exhibits of local history, birds, butterflies and an excellent collection of rocks and minerals. Dover ...

Dover started its life as a thriving river port town in the 17th century, grew into a successful center of cotton manufacturing and has evolved into a prosperous community supported by diverse industry, in particular the insurance industry. The Woodman Institute is an intriguing museum of local history and curiosities that occupies four buildings on the south end of the city. The most remarkable of these are an original 1675 fortified house and the Woodman Institute museum, reminiscent of a 19th-century cabinet of curiosities, filled with exhibits of local history, birds, butterflies and an excellent collection of rocks and minerals. Dover also is home to the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire, an outstanding facility set in the city’s riverside park. Durham, a neighboring town, is the home of the main campus of the University of New Hampshire. The town is dominated by the University, which occupies almost the entirety of Durham’s center, and is particularly known for the strengths of its engineering, teaching and agriculture departments. The school’s football, basketball and hockey teams are often national title contenders, and their games are popular events. The attractive campus is built primarily in the neo-classical style, although newer additions have brought more variety. The UNH Museum of Art, while small by some standards, has a fine collection, 80 percent of which is prints, watercolors and photography. Their collections tend to specialize in New England artists and the Boston Expressionists. Durham’s eastern boundary fronts on Great Bay, a huge inland tidal body of water.

Lura Seavey
About the Expert

Lura Seavey is the author of Fun with the Family in Vermont and New Hampshire and she has contributed to several Thomas Cook guidebooks, including Drive Around Catalonia, Travellers Mallorca, and Travellers Barcelona.

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Spring through fall; spring is best for the Jesse Hepler Lilac Arboretum