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America's Stonehenge, Salem

3.0
#9 of 54 in Historic Sites in New Hampshire
Ruin · Mysterious Site
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America's Stonehenge is a privately owned tourist attraction and archaeological site consisting of a number of large rocks and stone structures scattered around roughly 30 acres (12 hectares) within the town of Salem, New Hampshire, in the United States. It is open to the public for a fee as part of a recreational area which includes snowshoe trails and an alpaca farm.

A number of hypotheses exist as to the origin and purpose of the structures. One viewpoint is a mixture of land-use practices of local farmers in the 18th and 19th centuries and construction of structures by owner William Goodwin, an insurance executive who purchased the area in 1937. Some claim that the site has a pre-Columbian European origin, but this is regarded as pseudoarchaeological. Archaeologist David Starbuck has said: "It is widely believed that Goodwin may have 'created' much of what is visible at the site today.": 106 
The site was first dubbed Mystery Hill by William Goodwin. This was the official name of the site until 1982, when it was renamed "America's Stonehenge", a term coined in a news article in the early 1960s. The rebranding was an effort to separate it from roadside oddity sites and to reinforce the idea that it is an ancient archaeological site. The area is named after Stonehenge in England, although there is no evidence of cultural or historical connection between the two.

It is mentioned, as Mystery Hill, on New Hampshire Historical Marker No. 72.
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America's Stonehenge reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 3.5
241 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • We give this a 4 for the wacky factor. We had watched their orientation video in advance (on their website), and that right there set the alarm bells going. The visit left us with more... 
    We give this a 4 for the wacky factor. We had watched their orientation video in advance (on their website), and that right there set the alarm bells going. The visit left us with more...  more »
Google
  • For starters, this place is amazing! There is a lot of history to see! As for the attraction itself, it is impressive to see how the people lived in that era. The trails to the sites were okay, but I suggest one wear a good pair of hiking boots or a good pair of tennis shoes with some good traction because I slipped on mud and fell. That said, I highly recommend visiting when the weather isn’t so frigid! The cost to tour the site was $14.00 per adult. The price is less expensive for children, and a military discount is available. There is also a lovely gift shop with various items to purchase and a small museum connected to the gift shop. A tour map and audio information are available to download on a cell phone. The parking is free, but it is a dirt parking lot, so if it rains, there will be large puddles. Overall the site is worth seeing! You will be amazed.
  • My husband and I really enjoyed this attraction. Lots of parking. Good map and descriptions given upon checking in. It would be worth it to download the app before going, although it's still enjoyable without the app. My favorite part was walking through the Oracle Chamber, if I recall the right name. Some of the sites you can view but that one you could walk through. The gift shop was nice and prices were reasonable.

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