Peterborough, NH : Interesting Facts, Famous Things & History Information | What Is Peterborough Known For?

Peterborough, NH : Interesting Facts, Famous Things & History Information | What Is Peterborough Known For?

History & Information About Peterborough, New Hampshire

Located in the heart of Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, Peterborough is a charming town full of history and natural beauty. Nestled in the Monadnock Region, this picturesque New England town offers a unique blend of small-town charm, cultural richness, and scenic landscapes.

Peterborough was first settled in 1739, making it one of the oldest towns in the state. The town was named after Peterborough in Cambridgeshire, England. Like many other towns in the region, it began as an agricultural community with fertile soils and abundant water sources. The Contoocook River, which runs through the town, played a vital role in supporting the early settlers' farming and milling activities.

As the years went by, Peterborough evolved and diversified its economy. In the 19th century, it witnessed significant industrial growth, primarily due to the rise of manufacturing. The town became renowned for its textile mills, which produced a wide range of cotton and woolen goods. The availability of water power from the Contoocook River was instrumental in attracting industries to Peterborough.

Despite its industrial success, Peterborough never lost its natural splendor. The town is surrounded by stunning landscapes, including the majestic Mount Monadnock. This iconic mountain has drawn nature enthusiasts, hikers, and artists for centuries. The area's beauty even inspired the renowned American poet, Robert Frost, who spent many summers in Peterborough.

In addition to its natural wonders, Peterborough is also known for its vibrant arts and cultural scene. The town is home to several theaters and performance spaces, including the Peterborough Players, one of the country's oldest professional summer stock theaters. The MacDowell Colony, an artists' retreat founded in 1907, has attracted countless artists, writers, and composers from around the world to seek inspiration in Peterborough's tranquil surroundings.

Peterborough's rich heritage is proudly preserved through its historic architecture. The town boasts a range of well-preserved colonial and Victorian buildings, some of which have been converted into charming inns, unique shops, and art galleries. Walking through the streets of Peterborough feels like stepping back in time, as the town has managed to maintain its small-town New England charm throughout the years.

Today, Peterborough remains a vibrant and thriving community. Its strong sense of community, natural beauty, and rich history make it an attractive place to live, work, and visit. The town hosts various cultural events and festivals throughout the year, showcasing its artistic talents and welcoming spirit. Visitors are encouraged to explore the charming downtown area, hike the trails around Mount Monadnock, and immerse themselves in the town's unique blend of history, culture, and natural splendor.

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Interesting Facts About Peterborough City

Peterborough is a charming town located in the state of New Hampshire, USA. Here are some interesting lesser-known facts about this wonderful city:

  • Peterborough is home to one of the oldest continuously operating public libraries in the United States. The Peterborough Town Library, established in 1833, has a rich collection of books and serves as a valuable resource for the community.
  • The town is renowned for its vibrant arts scene. Peterborough is home to the Peterborough Players, one of the oldest professional summer stock theaters in the country. Founded in 1933, it has hosted many acclaimed actors and productions throughout its history.
  • An interesting feature of the town is its downtown clock, which is known for running 8 minutes fast. This unusual tradition dates back to 1870 when the clock was installed and has continued ever since.
  • Peterborough has a strong literary heritage. It served as the inspiration for Thornton Wilder's famous play "Our Town." Wilder lived in Peterborough and drew inspiration from the town's community and small-town life.
  • The town is surrounded by natural beauty. Peterborough is located in the Monadnock Region, known for its picturesque landscapes and outdoor recreational opportunities. Mount Monadnock, an iconic mountain, offers stunning hiking trails and breathtaking views.
  • Peterborough is also known for its commitment to sustainability. It was one of the first towns in the United States to achieve the desirable title of "Green Community." The town has implemented various environmental initiatives to reduce its carbon footprint.
  • Another interesting fact is that folk singer-songwriter James Taylor spent part of his childhood in Peterborough. This town greatly influenced his music and lyrical style.

These are just a few notable facts about Peterborough, but the town has much more to offer. Its rich history, vibrant arts scene, natural beauty, and commitment to sustainability make it a unique and fascinating place to visit or call home.

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What Is Peterborough City Known & Famous For

Peterborough, New Hampshire, USA is a charming city known for its rich history, natural beauty, and vibrant community. Located in Hillsborough County, Peterborough offers a peaceful and picturesque setting in the heart of New England.

One of the main attractions of Peterborough is its strong artistic and cultural scene. The city has a thriving arts community, with numerous galleries, theaters, and music venues. The Peterborough Players, a renowned professional theater company, brings top-notch performances to the stage year-round. The MacDowell Colony, an artists' retreat, has attracted famous writers, composers, and visual artists for over a century.

Peterborough is also famous for its natural beauty. Surrounded by lush forests, rolling hills, and pristine lakes, the city offers abundant opportunities for outdoor activities. Mount Monadnock, one of the most climbed mountains in the world, is just a short drive away. Hiking, camping, fishing, and boating enthusiasts will find endless enjoyment in the area's scenic landscapes.

Moreover, Peterborough is proud of its historic architecture and preservation efforts. The downtown area is lined with well-preserved colonial-era buildings, charming shops, and eateries. The town's historical society hosts various events and tours, allowing visitors to explore the rich heritage of the region.

For those interested in education, Peterborough is home to prestigious educational institutions. The town is renowned for its private schools, including the prestigious Monadnock Community School and ConVal Regional High School.

The community spirit in Peterborough is strong, with a range of annual events and festivals that bring people together. The popular Thing in the Spring music festival, the Old Home Days celebration, and the Children and the Arts festival are just a few examples of the vibrant social life found within the city.

All in all, Peterborough, New Hampshire offers a blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and community ambiance that makes it a delightful place to live or experience as a visitor. Whether you're interested in outdoor adventures, artistic endeavors, or immersing yourself in history, Peterborough has something special to offer.

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What Is It Like To Live In Peterborough City?

Living in Peterborough, New Hampshire is a unique experience that offers a charming and picturesque environment. Nestled in the heart of New England, this small town has a warm and welcoming atmosphere that makes it an ideal place to call home.

One of the standout features of Peterborough is its natural beauty. Surrounded by rolling hills, lush forests, and pristine lakes, the area offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, boating, and fishing. The town itself is also visually appealing, with its well-preserved historic buildings and charming downtown area.

Aside from its natural aesthetics, Peterborough is known for its strong sense of community. The town hosts numerous events and festivals throughout the year, bringing residents together to celebrate and socialize. Whether it's the summer farmers market, the fall foliage festival, or the winter holiday parade, there is always something happening to engage residents of all ages.

Another advantage of living in Peterborough is its rich cultural scene. Despite its small size, the town is home to several art galleries, theaters, and museums. Local artists and performers regularly showcase their talents, providing residents with a vibrant and diverse arts community.

In terms of amenities, Peterborough has all the essentials without the hustle and bustle of a big city. There are grocery stores, pharmacies, and banks conveniently located within the town. Additionally, you can find a variety of local shops, restaurants, and cafes, allowing you to support local businesses and indulge in unique culinary experiences.

Education is also highly valued in Peterborough. The town has excellent public schools that prioritize the academic and personal growth of students. There are also opportunities for higher education nearby, with several respected colleges and universities in the surrounding area.

Overall, living in Peterborough, New Hampshire means enjoying a close-knit community, stunning natural surroundings, a thriving arts scene, and convenient amenities. It offers a peaceful and fulfilling lifestyle that appeals to those seeking a slower pace of life without sacrificing opportunities for culture and outdoor adventures.

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Things to Do in Peterborough, New Hampshire, USA

Peterborough is a charming town located in southern New Hampshire. Here are a few activities you can enjoy during your visit:

1. Explore Nature at Miller State Park

Head to Miller State Park, also known as Pack Monadnock, to enjoy beautiful hiking trails and breathtaking scenic views. You can hike to the summit and even have a picnic amidst nature.

2. Visit the MacDowell Colony

The MacDowell Colony is an artist retreat set in a serene environment. Take a tour to learn about the history and significance of this exceptional place, which has hosted many renowned artists.

3. Discover Art and Culture at the Mariposa Museum

The Mariposa Museum celebrates cultural diversity through exhibits and educational programs. Explore the various collections of art, crafts, and artifacts from around the world.

4. Attend a Performance at the Peterborough Players

The Peterborough Players is a professional theater company that offers high-quality performances throughout the year. Experience the magic of live theater by attending one of their shows.

5. Stroll Through Downtown Peterborough

Take a leisurely walk through the charming downtown area of Peterborough. Explore the unique shops, boutiques, and art galleries while enjoying the small-town atmosphere.

6. Visit the Sharon Arts Center

The Sharon Arts Center is an art gallery and school that features rotating exhibitions by local and regional artists. Attend a workshop or browse the gallery to appreciate the local art scene.

7. Explore the Monadnock Community Hospital Trails

If you enjoy outdoor activities, head to the Monadnock Community Hospital Trails. These scenic trails are perfect for walking, running, or even cross-country skiing during winter months.

8. Indulge in Local Flavors

Peterborough offers a variety of fantastic dining options. Sample local New England cuisine, visit cozy cafes, or enjoy a pint at one of the town's charming pubs.

9. Discover History at the Monadnock Center for History and Culture

Learn about the rich history of Peterborough and the Monadnock Region at the Monadnock Center for History and Culture. Browse their exhibits and attend educational programs related to local heritage.

10. Attend Local Festivals and Events

Peterborough hosts several annual festivals and events, such as the Monadnock International Film Festival and the New Hampshire Craftsmen's Fair. Check the town's calendar to see if any events coincide with your visit.

With its natural beauty, cultural attractions, and welcoming community, Peterborough offers a delightful experience for visitors of all ages and interests.

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Travel Guide: Peterborough, New Hampshire, USA

Planning a trip to Peterborough, New Hampshire? Here's a detailed travel guide to help you make the most of your visit to this charming town in the USA.

Getting There

Peterborough is conveniently located in southwestern New Hampshire. If you are arriving by air, the nearest major airports are Manchester-Boston Regional Airport (approximately 45 miles away) and Logan International Airport in Boston (around 75 miles away). From there, you can rent a car or take a bus to reach Peterborough.

Where to Stay

Peterborough offers a range of accommodation options, including charming bed and breakfasts, cozy inns, and comfortable hotels. Some popular choices include The Jack Daniels Motor Inn, The MacDowell Colony, and The Greenfield Inn. Ensure to book your accommodation in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to secure the best deals and availability.

Things to Do

1. Explore Downtown Peterborough: Take a stroll through the picturesque streets of downtown Peterborough. Enjoy the classic New England architecture, quaint shops, art galleries, and local cafes. Don't miss the opportunity to visit Toadstool Bookshops, one of the largest independent bookstores in New Hampshire.

2. Peterborough Historical Society Museum: Immerse yourself in the history and heritage of Peterborough at the local museum. Learn about the town's past, view artifacts, and gain insights into the cultural significance of the region.

3. Hiking and Nature Trails: Nature enthusiasts will love exploring the many hiking trails in Peterborough. Discover stunning landscapes, scenic views, and peaceful surroundings at nearby parks such as Miller State Park, Pack Monadnock Mountain, and Edward MacDowell Lake.

4. Attend a Performance at the Peterborough Players: If you appreciate theater, catch a live performance at the renowned Peterborough Players. This professional theater company showcases a range of productions, including classics, dramas, and comedies.

Where to Eat

Peterborough offers a diverse culinary scene with options to suit every palate. Some must-try restaurants include Twelve Pine, Harlow's Pub, and Del Rossi's Trattoria. Indulge in farm-to-table cuisine, enjoy craft beer, or savor mouthwatering Italian dishes during your visit.

Best Time to Visit

Peterborough experiences pleasant weather during the spring and fall seasons, making them ideal times to visit. The stunning foliage in the fall is especially captivating. However, each season in Peterborough has its own unique charm, so you can plan your trip based on personal preferences.


Peterborough, New Hampshire, offers visitors a delightful blend of history, natural beauty, and cultural experiences. Whether you enjoy outdoor activities, exploring museums, or simply relaxing in a quaint town, Peterborough has something for everyone. Plan your trip well, and you're sure to create lasting memories in this charming New England destination.

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Hello,My name is Aparna Patel,I’m a Travel Blogger and Photographer who travel the world full-time with my hubby.I like to share my travel experience.

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