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History in the Making

The Androscoggin River flows through Berlin, NH, after travelling southward from Lake Umbagog and the Great North Woods. By the middle of the 19th century entrepreneurs were being drawn to the Berlin area because of the tremendous waterpower produced by the Androscoggin. It is in Berlin that the river drops 200 feet in less than three miles.

loggers on the river

Perhaps the most noticeable of these far-sighted entrepreneurs was William Wentworth Brown, who bought the H. W. Winslow Company sawmill in 1868. He quickly realized that his lumber business could best be served by acquiring forest lands upriver from Berlin, where trees could be harvested and replanted, while using the river as a delivery route for the logs to his sawmill. Brown was a pioneer in the development of sustainable forestry.

Benefitting from the increasing speed and efficiency of manufacturing developed by the Industrial Revolution and the increasing flow of immigrant labor seeking a better life for themselves and their families, Brown built a model, benevolently-run company complex here on the banks of the Androscoggin.

present day

Today Berlin and the North Country are in the midst of developing a new vision for the future, but doing so without forgetting the area's storied past. Begun in 1994 by a concerned and committed group of people, the Northern Forest Heritage Park is dedicated to preserving and celebrating the Northern Forest and the lives, labors, legends and legacy of the many peoples who came and made this area their home. Our goal is to celebrate the rich heritage of this area and its people, and to educate and inform visitors about our past.

park cabins

The Park features a full-scale replica of a 19th century logging camp set beside the Androscoggin, and offers self-guided, walking tours of the camp. We also host several annual festivals that celebrate and honor the area's history, including the Lumberjack Festival and Competition and Heritage Holidays. Other events take place at the Park throughout the open season (April - December) and the Park is available for private rentals when no scheduled activity conflicts. Many area people reserve the Park for weddings, family reunions, graduation parties and such.

The Northern Forest Heritage Park is owned and operated as a community service 
by Tri-County Community Action Program, Inc.

Please look around our website and explore the links below to learn more about the Northern Forest Heritage Park. Thanks for visiting our website. Come visit the Park!

2014 Calendar of Events

Reserve the Park for your event!

Logging Camp Map (.pdf)

Volunteer Opportunities

Northern Forest Heritage Park Mission Statement

Thanks to the good folks at The Center for Rural Partnerships at Plymouth State University the Industrial Explorers exhibition of panels tracing the origins and history of the innovative Brown Company Research and Development group is available to view online and to download. (see also Berlin R&D Buildings). We are grateful to CRP for the excellent work done on this project.

Videos: Berlin Area | Local Discovery ~ Androscoggin Valley Videos

Lodging: Where to stay in Berlin/Gorham? Click here to find out!

We are grateful to our many sponsors and supporters. Click here to see who they are!

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961 Main Street Berlin, NH 03570 | Tel: (603) 752-7202 | Fax: (603) 752-7607

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