Colorful life of Samuel Blodget recalled at Millyard Museum
He's remembered as a prolific role model — a merchant, lumberman, textile manufacturer, potash producer and inventor whose account of the French and Indian War's Battle of Lake George is immortalized into a detailed engraving.
Learn more about the colorful life of local hero Samuel Blodget in an 11 a.m. program Saturday, June 29, at the Millyard Museum, 200 Bedford St., Manchester.
Aurore Eaton, executive director of the Manchester Historic Association, will present an illustrated lecture titled “Samuel Blodget — Manchester's Pioneer of Industry.”
Blodget is known for a detailed engraving that is considered one of the most important American historical illustrations. While selling goods to British and colonial soldiers in 1755 during the French and Indian War he was eye-witness to the famous Battle of Lake George.
Blodget also was an inventor and tireless promoter of the potential for water-powered industry in New England. He built a transportation canal along the east bank of the Merrimack River at Amoskeag Falls so that flat-bottomed cargo boats could bypass the rapids. He started work on the canal when he was 70 years old, and the endeavor cost him 13 years of his life as well as his personal fortune. The canal was completed in 1807, a few months before his death.
In 1810 the town of Derryfield changed its name to Manchester to honor Blodget's vision that the area around Amoskeag Falls someday would become a center of manufacturing to emulate Manchester, England. That day would come, but not until several decades later.
The program is included with museum admission, which ranges from $4 to $8; free for children younger than 12. Saturday, June 29, is AARP Day, with members receiving a $3 discount. The Millyard Museum also is a Blue Star Museum, offering free admission to active duty military and their families.
To register for Saturday's program, call 622-7531 or send E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Log onto manchesterhistoric.org for more details.