Spring Break Road Trip – Day 1 (NH, MA, RI)


April 1, 2013
by Editors Also by this Author


Journal of the American Revolution is the leading source of knowledge about the American Revolution and Founding Era. We feature smart, groundbreaking research and well-written narratives from expert writers. Our work has been featured by the New York Times, TIME magazine, History Channel, Discovery Channel, Smithsonian, Mental Floss, NPR, and more. Journal of the American Revolution also produces annual hardcover volumes, a branded book series, and the podcast, Dispatches

Courtesy of Salem Maritime NHS
Courtesy of Salem Maritime NHS

Journal of the American Revolution is closing its office this week and heading on a road trip, making stops at historic Revolution sites along our fictional drive from New Hampshire to Georgia.

Our first stop will be where the first shots of the Revolution were fired – Portsmouth. In December 1774, the first armed exchange between American and British military units took place 50 miles north of Boston at Fort William and Mary, since renamed Fort Constitution. Fort Constitution State Historic Site, overlooking the Piscataqua River and the Atlantic Ocean, is unstaffed and open year-round for recreation.

After a breakfast picnic at Fort Constitution, we’ll drive 10 minutes and sneak a peek at the 1781 home of America’s first naval hero, John Paul Jones. Since the home opens at 11 am and it will be very early, we may just snap a few pictures of the exterior and drive one hour south to Salem, Massachusetts, for a quick tour of the Salem Maritime National Historic Site. “The historic buildings, wharves, and reconstructed tall ship at this nine-acre National Park tell the stories of the sailors, Revolutionary War privateers, and merchants who brought the riches of the world to America.” Next, we’ll hop back in our brand new 2013 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid (this is a fictional road trip after all), and drive 35 minutes to Boston.

We plan to scarf down a late lunch at Union Oyster House, America’s oldest restaurant and the building where printer Isaiah Thomas published the Massachusetts Spy (upper floor). That afternoon we’ll tour the Freedom Trail with private guide Ben Edwards, a relative of Paul Revere, making sure to stop at one of Boston’s newest historic destination – the Printing Office of Edes & Gill. Grabbing some Legal Sea Food to go, we will wave good-bye to Boston, drive through Lexington and Concord and race to Newport, Rhode Island, where we’ll do some more drive-by tourism of the Colony House and the Brick Market Building.

We’ll be checking our smart phones from the road, so leave us a comment with your recommended historic must-sees and -dos in New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. If we can’t squeeze it all in on Monday, we’ll plan for another road trip soon.

Tomorrow our non-stop historic site spring break continues as we tackle Connecticut, New York and New Jersey.

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