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New Boston residents celebrated the 250th anniversary of the signing of the town charter at a Founder's Day Tea at the public library on Monday. (NANCY BEAN FOSTER/Union Leader Correspondent)

New Boston celebrates 250th anniversary with a tea party

NEW BOSTON - Dressed in period costume and ready to celebrate the birth of their town, residents attended a special Founder's Day Tea at the Whipple Free Library on Monday.

The ceremony, part of a yearlong celebration of New Boston's birthday, included a re-enactment of the signing of the town charter on Feb. 18, 1763.

A film detailing the town's history, created by fifth-graders at the New Boston Central School in 2008, was shown. It included photographs of the town and its various characters over the years, and was animated and narrated by the students who are now sophomores in high school, said Betsy Moody of the New Boston Historical Society.

"They really did a great thing with this film," she said.

But the afternoon was also time to gather with friends, enjoy refreshments and, of course, dress up in costumes from the period. Long skirts and petticoats, long-tailed coats and knee-length trousers were par for the course at the library.

Dick Moody, president of the historical society, was decked out in a tri-corner hat and a coat with tails, something he has worn often while participating in various historical re-enactments around the country. Moody even worked as an extra in the Mel Gibson film, "The Patriot," though he admits folks have to look carefully to pick him out of the crowd.

For Moody, the 250th celebration of New Boston's founding creates a sense of historical continuity that town residents can appreciate. The event he's looking forward to most is the upcoming living history re-enactment in May.

Over the course of three days, from May 10-12, New Boston's ballfield will become an encampment of Civil War- era characters featuring members of the 1st New Hampshire Calvary, 6th New Hampshire Infantry and 5th Massachusetts Battery.

"It's really exciting to me because it will be the 150th anniversary of Gettysburg and the 250th anniversary of New Boston," Moody said.

For Bryan Henderson, who moved to New Boston from North Carolina four years ago after falling in love with the town, being able to participate in the history of the place is a great way to settle in.

Betsy Moody said that the blend of new residents and old-timers who have come together to make the 250th anniversary happen is exactly why the yearlong celebration is so important to New Boston.


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