In a state like New Hampshire with a deep history, it comes as no surprise that there are some dark and curious stories of the past. Explore the undiscovered side of New Hampshire and visit the sites of famous alien abductions, UFO sightings, and notoriously haunted locations if you dare. . .
Betty and Barney Hill Memorials, Lincoln
The first ever internationally publicized alien abduction account occurred right here in New Hampshire on a fateful night in September of 1961. A series of lights and a mysterious aircraft following Betty and Barney Hill left the pair feeling uneasy, and when they suddenly came to 2 hours later and 35 miles further down the road – they knew something had occurred. Visit the site of the abduction where a historical marker recognizes the incident, or stop in to the nearby Irving Express to snap a photo of a colorful alien mural memorializing the event.
Betty and Barney Hill Archive, Durham
In the southern part of the state, enthusiasts can visit the Betty and Barney Hill Archive at UNH’s Dimond Library. The archive hosts correspondence, personal journals, manuscripts, photographs, and DVDs relating to the abduction and the discovery and exploration of the event that unfolded afterwards. The collection is open to the public and the archives are available by appointment.
Exeter UFO Festival, Exeter
In yet another alien-encounter just 5 years after the Betty and Barney Hill incident, young Norman Muscarello saw what appeared to be a hovering UFO in Kensington, NH on September 3, 1965. After reporting it to local authorities, they confirmed the sight, and the experience made national headlines. To honor that mysterious event, the town of Exeter puts on a UFO Festival every year in early September—filled with alien costume contests, kid’s activities, expert speaker presentations on the study of UFOs, and of course: out-of-this-world-fun!
Eunice “Goody” Cole Memorial Stone, Hampton
The story of Eunice “Goody” Cole is one of tragedy and hardship. In 1656, Eunice became the only woman in NH to ever be convicted for witchcraft, resulting in a life sentence and the revocation of her citizenship. She was eventually released into the begrudging care of Hampton residents who became responsible for her wellbeing. She died in 1680 with nothing but contempt from the local community to her name. Nearly 300 years later, locals restored Eunice’s citizenship to the town, and a unique memorial stone was constructed for her in the historic town green.
Gravesite of Sevilla Jones, New Boston
In New Boston, a peculiar gravestone tells the tale of a tragic murder. Young Sevilla Jones was on her way to school one January morning in 1854 when she was met by her neighbor Henry Sargent. Sargent had fallen in love with Sevilla, but once he discovered his feelings were unreciprocated, he paid for his own grave to be dug and obtained two guns. Sargent killed Sevilla before turning the gun on himself that fateful morning – and today the two are left buried in the same cemetery, with Sevilla’s stone gravely telling the tale of her demise. Sevilla’s stone reads: “Thus fell this lovely blooming daughter, By the revengeful hand a malicious Henry, When on her way to school he met her, and with a six self-cocked pistol, shot her.”
The Tilton Inn and Onions Pub & Restaurant, Tilton
The building where the current Tilton Inn and Onions Pub is located hides a mysteriously dark past. The building itself has burned down three times with a span of almost 100 years separating each fire, one of which took the life of a 12-year-old girl named Laura who the owners suspect never left. The establishment has been investigated over the years by reputable paranormal investigators including the hit tv series Ghost Hunters. Visit the pub for a drink, grab dinner at the restaurant or if you’re feeling brave, book an overnight stay in the haunted Sanborn Room.
The Windham Restaurant, Windham
Looking to dine with the dead? Then you’ll love the Windham Restaurant, where mischievous ghosts are said to haunt this historic-homestead-turned-restaurant, and the food and spirits are to die for. The restaurant has undergone several paranormal investigations that have uncovered evidence of three spirits who linger in the home. Dine if you dare, or for those looking for a deeper dive into the home’s history and its lore, reserve a spot at one of the restaurant’s infamous “Dining with the Dead” events during the autumn season.
Amos J. Blake House Museum, Fitzwilliam
The 1837 home of prominent community leader Amos J. Blake is anything but ordinary. Today, the museum encapsulates the former homestead—keeping life as it was frozen in time. Maybe that’s why ghosts and apparitions have been spotted around the property. Guests have reported seeing a little boy appear from thin air, employees cite moving objects and mysterious bells when no one is around, and Ghost Hunters even investigated the property in 2009. Those looking to visit the museum can request an appointment during the fall.
The 1723 James House, Hampton
One of Hampton’s oldest homes has become the subject of paranormal fascination. Visitors have reported hearing ominous laughter and doors slamming in empty parts of the home, and an account of a hymnal mysteriously falling from the ceiling in 2001 still gives volunteers chills. The association embraces its reputation as a haunted destination, offering paranormal tours in the fall, special events with renowned paranormal investigators, and openings for novice ghost hunters to examine the property. Find more information on their Facebook page!
America’s Stonehenge, Salem
In Salem, an ancient site with cryptic rock formations has been the subject of debate for centuries. The curious stone structures erected here are estimated to be over 4,000 years old, earning a spot as one of the oldest man-made constructions in the U.S. But with the site’s origins shrouded in mystery, many questions remain regarding its hidden past, like how or why the site was formed. Visit America’s Stonehenge and explore the mysterious structures yourself. . . you never know what you might discover.