Explore New Hampshire

If you enjoy learning about America’s revolutionary past, plan to visit the American Independence Museum in Exeter on your next trip to New England. The American Independence Museum is located in the beautifully restored Ladd-Gilman House dating from 1721. You can also tour the Folsom Tavern and learn about its historic past on your visit to the American Independence Museum.

Exhibits related to the Ladd, Gilman, and Folsom families, Exeter’s revolutionary history and the American Revolution in general are featured at the Museum. The Society of the Cincinnati is another focus of the Museum.

The American Independence Museum holds an impressive permanent collection of revolutionary documents, furnishings, ceramics and silver, military ephemera and other items. Some of these include early drafts of the U.S. Constitution and an original Dunlap Broadside of the Declaration of Independence.

Other noteworthy items in the Museum’s collection include letters and documents written by General George Washington and other significant revolutionary figures, as well as portraits of George Washington and several important statesmen.

On a tour of the Ladd-Gilman House, the intriguing story of the Gilman family is detailed. This family of Exeter merchants was played a significant role in the revolutionary history of the area. The history of Folsom Tavern is equally fascinating. This Tavern was the central hub of political activity in the area. Built in 1775, it was relocated to its present location just down the hill from the Ladd-Gilman House in 2004.

The orientation gallery at the American Independence Museum provides visitors with an excellent overview of what Exeter was like during the 18th century. Other exhibits throughout the Ladd-Gilman House focus on the two most significant documents of revolutionary history, the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.

New Hampshire’s role in the revolutionary war is detailed in the Cilley Room in exhibits featuring original military documents, prints and assorted weaponry. The Treat Room highlights the Society of the Cincinnati in New Hampshire, the nation’s oldest veterans’ society, and its first president, George Washington.

July is a particularly exciting time to visit the American Independence Museum. Each year in July, Exeter celebrates the American Independence Festival. Children and adults enjoy learning about the Revolutionary period in New Hampshire during this fun and entertaining event.