200 Years of History

200 Years of History

200 Years of History
1821
1821

A Vision of New Hampton Academy

A Vision of New Hampton Academy

1821 Boston merchant, John Kelley Simpson (1787-1837) establishes a school in the village of New Hampton. Simpson finances the project and a tradition is born.

New Hampton School owes its existence to the vision, passion and ongoing energy/oversight of John K. Simpson (JKS). He was a native son who left New Hampton in 1805 and walked to Phillips Andover Academy. He spent enough time at Andover to obtain “a Certificate that I am capable of teaching a Grammar School” and having “found many acquaintances who have been valuable to me to this day…” he continued on to Boston and opened up his business [JKS Letters p. 261 – from a reflective letter written in 1833]. His highly successful import business operated out of the sumptuous John K. Simpson building right next to Faneuil Hall in Boston. 

As his young children became school-age, it was his idea to offer the Free-Will Baptists $10,000 to fund a school in his native town. When they declined the offer (in those days the Free Will Baptists were very opposed to any formal education around religion, including trained ministers), Simpson moved ahead on his own. He not only arranged for the building to be built but helped find the faculty and enlisted local families to board children from Boston while he relied on his brothers – still in New Hampton – to help oversee the Academy. Up until his death in 1837, he recruited students, served on the Board, sent his own children, funded the school, and oversaw the growth of the school, as is captured in this excerpt from an 1825 letter to his brother James about adding a new building:

Henry [another Simpson brother] thinks the old one might hold all the students and so it probably may. But you need not crowd the students into one building when it would add so much to the appearance and respectability of the institution by having a neat and elegant set of buildings. Completing the additional building will add greatly to the reputation of the place. [see John K. Simpson Letter to Brother James 1825.12.10 ]

 

1821

Announcement of the New Hampton Academy

Announcement of the New Hampton Academy

Trustees of the Academy announced the formal opening of New Hampton Academy in an advertisement from July 1821.

The public are informed that the first term in this Seminary for the instruction of young Gentlemen and Ladies, will commence on Monday the 17th of September next, at the new and elegant Building on the town Common, within six rods of the meeting house.

Mr. George Richardson, who graduated at Dartmouth College at the last commencement, and is now Preception of Moore’s School at Hanover, is engaged as Preceptor. Said Richardson is highly recommended by Professor Adams of Dartmouth College, as a man of good moral character and respectable literary acquirements, and has given general satisfaction as a public teacher.

Tuition—$3 per quarter.
Board from $1.00 to $1.33 per week.

William B. Kelly, Nathaniel Norris, Trustees of said Academy
New Hampton, July 19, 1821

 

1821

Opening Day – Monday, September 17

Opening Day – Monday, September 17

On June 27, 1821 the State of New Hampshire issues a charter to the school.

On September 17, 1821, the new academy welcomed forty students ages eight to eighteen, including thirteen from Boston who boarded with local families. The first instructor or “preceptor,” was George Richardson, an Episcopalian and recent Dartmouth College graduate chosen for his ability to deliver a diverse curriculum. While only one room was ready when the doors opened, the schoolhouse was a two-story wood framed building, twenty-four by thirty-two feet. Judging from a surviving 1824 program of an “Exhibition at New-Hampton Academy,” the curriculum was ambitious from the start. The students, young and old (including two of John K. Simpson’s young sons) presented orations in Latin, scenes from The Merchant of Venice, debates on religion vs. superstition, “the Greek Immigrants’ Song,” and “Hannibal’s Speech to the Carthaginians,” among other topics. With Simpson’s tireless recruiting and marketing, it is little wonder that enrollment more than doubled (to eighty-seven) the second year.

1824
1824

Longing to Sing

Longing to Sing

In the fourth year of New Hampton School’s existence (Nov 1824), about two dozen students, “desirous of improving our selves in the Art or Science of Musick,” submitted a petition to establish a singing school at the Academy.

Two of the signers, brothers William and Nathan Mallon, were boarding students from Boston. What is remarkable about this almost two-hundred-year-old document is how it captures the importance of student voices right from the beginning. The students were obviously effective, as the following year (1825) NHS hired a new faculty member: Mr. Jeremiah Putney, Teacher of Vocal Musick.

Read the petition transcription.

1825
1825

A New Mission

With Baptist sponsorship, New Hampton Academy becomes New Hampton Academical and Theological Institution, educating students to become ministers and missionaries.

Character development has always been central to the New Hampton curriculum. In 1825 the school adopts the name The New Hampton Academical and Theological Institution to reflect the patronage of the New England Freewill Baptists and the curriculum’s emphasis on the spiritual aspects of character development.

1827
1827

Literary Societies

Literary Societies

Opportunities for abundant cultural and social opportunities on the NHS campus were provided through very active literary societies:  the Literary Adelphi (1827); the competing Social Fraternity (1830); the Ladies Literary and Missionary Association (1833) – reconstituted as the  Germanae  Delictae  Scientiae (1853). Very active throughout the 19th and early 20th century,1the societies disappeared by the late 1940s, replaced by more and more co-curriculars added to the NHS program.2

In the archives of New Hampton School there are hundredsofelaborately designed and printed programs for the three “competing” literary societies of NHS. Spanning the decades these, small paper gems advertise plays, recitations, dances, debates and programs, open to all. The all-male Literary Adelphi was the first, started in 1827, the sixth year of NHS. Within a few years, an alternative society was founded that was intended to be more inclusive: the Social Fraternity (circa 1830 – the actual date has been debated). Three years later, the school’s “Female Department” initiated the highly successful Ladies Literary and Missionary Association (1833). As famed New York City newspaper editor, Horace Greeley reported in the May 19, 1838 edition of his paper, The New Yorker, “We have received the ‘Fourth Annual Report of the Ladies’ Literary and Missionary Society of the New Hampton Female Seminary,’ a large pamphlet of nearly a hundred pages, embodying the proceedings for the last year of a Female Association for the purposes of philanthropy and mental improvement, with the character and merits of which our readers have already been acquainted. This Association now numbers some 400 acting members… Much of the contents of this work evinces a high order of literary merit, especially the circular and the political contributions with which it is enriched. The whole reflects great credit on the minds and hearts which originated and still sustain this Association.”3

It is difficult to measure the significant impact of the literary societies on the overall NHS experience during the school’s first 125 years. Long-tenured (1898-1923) Head of School Frank W. Preston, an astute and careful student of the history of NHS, wrote that the libraries, reading rooms, weekly meetings and public presentations were key to the success of NHS. A memorial to Preston that highlights his very successful promotion of the societies notes, “To the student at the time, all these activities perhaps seemed but a part of the routine life of the School, but in later years as alumni, the same individuals can appreciate the tremendous effect of it all as a carefully thought-out program to perpetuate the spirit of the founders. Each society… held weekly meetings [with] debates, music, declamations, fraternity papers, and other features, sometimes its own orchestra. The literary programs were open to all members of the School. When one remembers that there were three such programs each week in School it is easy to visualize the total influence of these societies upon the young life of the School. Many a boy and girl acquired a facility of expression, a platform of grace and ease which are felt today, many years after graduation. In addition to the weekly meetings of the societies each society held an Annual Public Meeting, when a literary and musical program was followed by a play, the cast for which was carefully selected and thoroughly drilled. For many years these Public Meetings were the occasion for the homecoming of graduates. They drew their audience from miles.”4

1827

A Female Principal

A Female Principal

The female seminary in New Hampton is led by the dynamic school alumna Martha Hazeltine of the class of 1827.

“Her instruction electrified her pupils with a desire to drink deep at the fountain of knowledge. All thirsted for information. And probably the fact, that many of the truths communicated to pupils, were new to the teacher, perhaps acquired by the midnight lamp the night previous, imparted a life to the instruction, which tended to render it much more interesting and effective. She learned with her pupils; but she was their pioneer.” – Sarah Sleeper

Read more about Martha Hazeltine.

1835
1835

An Impressive Visit

Two Ministers from England, Rev. Hoby and Rev. Cox, visit and observe the school in action for several days.

Two Ministers from England, Rev. Hoby and Rev. Cox, visit and observe the school in action for several days. Their fascinating account – not unlike an NEASC Visiting Committee Report – is published in an 1836 Baptist Journal (digital copy available in the NHS Archives). The two are very favorably impressed with the Female Seminary and wish England might have schools like New Hampton. Rev. Hoby and Rev. Cox recounted many details of their visit to NHS. They had particular praise for the female division and its head, noting that, “Miss Hazeltine has risen to merited distinction. The powers of her mind, her attainments, and a happy facility in teaching early marked her as likely to excel in this arduous and responsible station. Two or three able associates take their respective departments, in most efficient and harmonious cooperation with the lady president. Many Many young ladies from Boston have received their education there; and its advancing celebrity has led to the intention of erecting a new and more spacious edifice.[1] Hoby and Cox wished the United Kingdom could begin to model such centers of learning for women, concluding that, “the great mass of females with us, grow up comparatively in ignorance of much that is taught at New Hampton.[2]

[1] Baptists in America; A Narrative of the Deputation from the Baptist Union in England to the United States and Canada by Rev. Francis A. Cox and Rev. James Hoby. London [1836]. Pp. 389-90.

[2] Ibid, p.397.

1852
1852

The Abyss and Re-birth

The Abyss and Re-birth

The school relocates, including its name, to the hometown of Professor Smith to Fairfax, Vermont in 1852

After decades of growth under the leadership of Professor Eli B. Smith, D.D., financial constraints led the school to the brink. Failure to build an endowment and dwindling support from NH Calvinist Baptists ended in the relocation of the school, including its name, to the hometown of Professor Smith, Fairfax, Vermont in 1852. What remained in NH were empty buildings, the two literary societies, who, with their substantial libraries, voted to “remain forever at New Hampton,” and a town that daily felt the loss of an exciting intellectual and social center in its midst. Under the local leadership of Rufus G. Lewis, Henry Y. Simpson, Augustus Burpee, and others – and with a new alliance with the Freewill Baptists – a charter was obtained from the State Legislature to establish The New Hampton Literary and Biblical Institute. Buildings were relocated from the old “Center” (where the Town House stands today) to the “Village” (the current campus). As Lewis’ son, Edwin C. Lewis, recorded fifty years later, “the school was founded by New Hampton people; they patronized it, improved it, and contributed to its support; they saw to it that the school was supported both before church help was advanced and after it was withdrawn.”

1853
1853

A Literary Society for Women

A Literary Society for Women

In 1853, The Germanae Delictae Scientiae began as a ladies’ literary society.

It started one month after the Female Department at the New Hampton Literary and Biblical Institution opened. Societies were a popular way for like-minded students to have meetings, lectures, plays, and more. It was also significant for its library and reading room. Additionally, members exhibited their talents monthly at open public meetings. This helped establish them not only within the Female Department but also within the greater community.

See images from recently unearthed discoveries and read more on NHS Today.

1866
1866

Atwood Bond Meservey and The New Hampton Commercial College.

Atwood Bond Meservey and The New Hampton Commercial College.

Meservey turns to business courses at a time when the need to teach students how to thrive in business is at hand. He also adopts the premier writing style of one-year student, Austin Norman Palmer and the Palmer Method.

Atwood Bond Meservey made the New Hampton Literary Institution his life’s work. He held the longest tenure at the institution for his time, remaining there for thirty-five years (1862-1898). This does not include the time spent as a student in the classical course (1855-1857) and the Theological School (1857-1860). He held positions as a teacher in the natural sciences and mathematics, as well as becoming Principal. When he was called to the principalship, he was familiar with the general conditions of the school, fully realizing the importance of its mission and the difficulties that needed to be overcome to provide for innovation thus creating continuous growth of the school.

One of his first successes came in the form of a Commercial College started in 1866. Meservey understood that in order to meet the increasing demand for business education, that they needed to provide students with the tools to accomplish the demand. Here young men and women were able to obtain knowledge of single and double-entry bookkeeping. He created a department and space for student-run businesses. For instance, the ground floor of Commercial Hall was exclusively built to house a wholesale warehouse, divided into 25 wholesale and 25 retail stores. The merchandise comprised of a variety of  items for the students to purchase and/or sell. Included with the warehouses was a bank, with a circulation of $100,000. In their third term, each student received capital consisting of real estate, merchandise, cash, and bank stock. After successful business transactions and completing the third term students who qualified (with books that were in the black) received a diploma or a certificate.

Up to this point, Meservey’s students were using ornamental penmanship in their business courses. This beautiful yet time-consuming writing style was elegant but not practical. One student, Austin Norman Palmer, must have recognized this and when he arrived at the Institution to finish his formal education, he left an indelible impression on Meservey. The year Palmer spent at the Institution sparked an idea for the need of a quicker business style of writing. However, it was not until 1880 that this idea would come to fruition after taking a job at the Iowa Railroad Land Company where he developed what he called “muscular movement” writing. This turned him back to teaching, resigning his position at a business office to work for the Cedar Rapids Business College. Years later the Institution would adopt the Palmer Method at the same time that millions of other Americans were learning this new, easier way to transcribe.  Ornamental Penmanship Specimens Brochure

1870
1870

More Focus on Academics

More Focus on Academics

The strong department of Theological Studies moves to Bates College in Lewiston, Maine

In an era when small Christian schools with adequate funding developed into liberal arts colleges (e.g., the Charity School became Dartmouth College), New Hampton doubled down on its commitment to secondary education by expanding its now professional-level department of Theological Studies at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine (1870). The school was then free to focus on the traditional academic curriculum utilizing innovative methods of instruction.

1875
1875

A Visit from a Literary Icon

A Visit from a Literary Icon

A visit from Ralph Waldo Emerson during commencement.

Ralph Waldo Emerson delivers an address, “Social Aims,” to the Literary Societies and, after spending the night at Harvey House, attends commencement the following day, July 1, 1875. The 1874-75 Catalogue for New Hampton Institution notes,The anniversary exercises were made especially interesting and memorable by the presence of one of America’s ripest and ablest scholars, Ralph Waldo Emerson, who listened with manifest interest to the exercises, and expressed his satisfaction to the students in a few simple and beautiful words, at its close.”

1883
1883

Fresh Off The Press

Fresh Off The Press

Our signature magazine, The Hamptonia, owes its beginnings to the literary societies and left a trail of historical stories told by alumni and faculty throughout the first hundred years. We continue this tradition today with an annual production of the year in review gleaming with content from all touched by the institution.

The Hamptonia which was published quarterly by the Social Fraternity and Literary Adelphi, made its first appearance on March 26, 1883. This first edition had 28 pages bound in a blue paper cover with local advertisements inside and out. In those days, local business ads paid for the production costs. The featured story is that of John Wentworth, who served in the US Congress and Mayor of Chicago. He graduated from New Hampton in 1831 and was given much of the credit for founding the Social Fraternity. He was a native of Sandwich, NH and loathed the elitists of the Literary Adelphi which was a group made up of the wealthier students who were able to attend the school all year. Farm boys and girls who had to work in the summer and fall could only attend the winter term.

Aside from the background on the founder of the Social Fraternity, there were letters to the editor, poems, stories of the day, editorials, local information including colleges, and societal activities. Perhaps some of the most important information is the articles given by those affected by war. M. Frances Stewart 1864 from New Hampton wrote of her time sitting in class, “When cold weather came we heard pitiful stories of how our boys were suffering for want of stockings. Nearly every girl in school knit a pair…I must admit that I knit several times around a stocking under my cape while [Melvin B.] Tasker, [Isaac] Tyler, and others who later entered the army stumbled over Greek roots. Even then I sat up all night to finish my stocking, which I hope helped some good soldier to keep comfortable.” Frances continues the article claiming that “Melvin slept in a soldier’s grave” not returning home from war.

Although The Hamptonia took a hiatus and other publications began like the Manitou and the Alumni Bulletin the magazine commenced again in the late 1980s first monthly and now it runs as an annual magazine filled with stories on new buildings, students and teachers as well as alumni updates.

1896
1896

Gordon-Nash Library

Gordon-Nash Library

Judge Stephen G. Nash, New Hampton Alum (1838) and Dartmouth College (1842), provides a bequest to build and endow a library for the benefit of the school and the town. The Gordon-Nash Library opened in 1896. 

New Hampton alumnus Judge Stephen G. Nash (Class of 1834) funds the creation of the Gordon-Nash Library to serve “residents, students, and sojourners” and bequeaths to it his extensive personal collection. According to the History of the Gordon-Nash Library “In the 1880’s only seventy-six public libraries in the U. S. boasted more than three hundred books each and in 1887 (one year before the lot for Gordon-Nash Library was purchased) the first professional library training was started in New York City. When the library opened in 1896 (June 25) it housed approximately 6,000 of Judge Nash’s books and bound magazines, 4,000 books belonging to the literary societies of New Hampton Literary Institution and some 200 books belonging to the Biblical Institution, some 10,200 books.”

Read more on NHS Today.

1898
1898

Head of School Frank W. Preston

Head of School Frank W. Preston

Professor Preston made NHLI his life’s work staying for almost 50 years.

Frank W. Preston entered New Hampton Literary Institution (NHLI) as a student on November 27, 1875 and became a member of the Social Fraternity. He completed the English and Commercial courses in 1877 and returned as a Post Graduate student in 1877-78. He began teaching at NHLI in the fall of 1878 and was made associate principal in 1887 also he received the degree of A.M. from Dartmouth College. He served as principal of NHLI from the fall of 1898 to 1923. Professor Preston did much for New Hampton in raising money and in furthering the erection of Draper Hall (1910), Berry Hall (1911) and Lane Hall (1912). He wrote a history of the school and spent much time in compiling a register of its students, which material has proved most valuable in the preparation of this history.

1918
1918

1918 Flu Pandemic

1918 Flu Pandemic

Due to the flu pandemic, New Hampton closes twice: October 9-21, 1918, and December 14, 1918-January 6, 1919. “Our school, like many others, has suffered much from the influenza epidemic. Still, we consider ourselves very fortunate that all of our members were able to return.” – Hamptonia Vol 39, Issue 2: March 1919

Read more about the school’s pandemic experience on NHS Today.

1919
1919

Changing Days

Changing Days

By 1919, World War I has contributed to a radical decline in the local population and school enrollment drops drastically.

The School drops its Baptist affiliation and becomes The New Hampton Literary Institute.

1921
1921

Celebrating Our Centennial

Celebrating Our Centennial

“It is a hundred years of work to be proud of. Thousands of men and women from all over the world are glad to say that they got their early training in this old school.” – Hamptonia, Vol. XLI, Issue 4.

1926
1926

A New Transformation

A New Transformation

Frederick Smith (’10) is appointed Headmaster and transforms a weakened school into the vibrant college preparatory New Hampton School for Boys. Despite the Great Depression, the school grows to more than 150 students.

By 1925 NHLI was a shadow of its former self, with an ever-shrinking enrollment and buildings in disrepair. Concerned Trustees reached out (for the third time) to 1910 NHLI alum, Frederick Smith (Bates B.A., Harvard M.A.) with a plea that he lead his alma mater into the future. Smith, whose parents and six siblings were alums, and whose father had been Chair of the Board of Trustees, left a lucrative position in Mexico City to orchestrate a dynamic transformation of the school. With contagious enthusiasm, a commitment to finding financial aid for “worthy boys, and the support of his elegant wife, Grace, he was able to enroll 100 new students for September, 1926, (in addition to the 10 slated to return) while renovating the campus and overhauling the curriculum.5 The transformation to an all-male college preparatory program was soon emulated by a number of other New England academies, including Tilton, K.U.A., Proctor and Vermont Academy. During his thirty-three year tenure (1926-1959) enrollment and the program continued to grow, including an increase in facilities, athletic programs and other co-curricular activities. The New Hampton School for Boys became The New Hampton School in 1951.

The following word-portrait captures the essence of the indomitable Frederick Smith:

The indispensable ingredient in the flavor of New Hampton School was the personality of the Headmaster himself. Amid the many goings and comings of students and faculty during his long administration, his was the same hearty laugh, quizzical smile, and jovial nature which impelled action and inspired respect. His ruddy face, decisive voice, and direct manner highlighted an active and fertile intellect which never seemed at a loss for a plan of procedure. His remarkable memory for names and faces, his genial love of people, and his ease of personal contact and approach earned him hosts of friends throughout New England. He was an indefatigable salesman for the school, traveled far and wide in an effort to build up its clientele, and he had the businessman’s sense of values in promoting School welfare so often missing in the professional person. A great follower and participant in sports himself and long a fine tennis player, he inspired a generation of boys with the sportsmanship and manly virtues which come from a love of out-of-door activities. He was also a fine English Scholar and showed his New Hampton training in the ease and fluency of his speaking. All in all, he made a unique impression on any boy which was to last for life.6

1953
1953

Artist in Residence

Artist in Residence

Frederick “Fritz” Robbins (1893-1974) was an American artist and, for much of his life, a resident of New Hampton, New Hampshire. He was well known for his etched prints and watercolors. His legacy continues at New Hampton School in the Fritz Robbins Scholarship which supports a promising visual arts student. This map of campus was created in 1953 by Robbins.

1959
1959

Fresh Vision For A New Future

Fresh Vision For A New Future

T. Holmes Moore (’38) is appointed Head of School and enrollment doubles to 300 students as programs and facilities expand. In 1972 co-education again becomes part of the New Hampton experience, just as it had for the school’s first 105 years.

T. Holmes (“Bud”) Moore – Head of School from 1959-72; President from 1972-90; and President and Head from 1990-92.Bud Moore came to the campus as one of Fred Smith’s “worthy boys.” He soon fell in love with both the school and Norma Jean (“Jinga”) Smith, Fred and Grace’s vivacious daughter. Prior to his graduation in 1938, Bud was informed by Mr. Smith that he had the opportunity to enroll in Middlebury College with a scholarship. Bud’s time at Middlebury was interrupted by his service in WWII, after which he completed his degree at Middlebury, married Jinga, and began teaching in the English Department at NHS in 1946. While adding his considerable musical talents to organizing groups such as the Glee Club and the Jazz Club, he also began to take on more administrative responsibilities as Assistant Head. When Fred Smith retired in 1959, Bud was tapped to be the new Head. He helped reorganize the governing structure and moved forward with a dynamic vision for NHS. In his own words, “When I was a student at New Hampton, the educational experience extended to all levels and all areas, the intellectual through the academic program: the personal, physical, emotional – all of it. We were thinking about producing successful citizens and making life a little better, moving the world along a little bit, and realizing that that wasn’t totally an academic exercise. It was catering to different kinds of intelligence, though I’m not sure we knew that then… As head I started thinking that the educational experience shouldn’t be a training experience so much as a broadening experience, whereby you helped that student learn how he is different, then give him the maximum opportunity to capitalize on the differences, at the same time helping him to deal with his weaknesses…”7 With an ever-increasing need for raising funds, Bud was named President in 1972 and much-loved faculty member, Louis Gnerre, became the new Head, helping to bring coeducation back to campus. Lou served as Head until he stepped down in 1988 to become College Counselor. Bertram H. Buxton III then served for two years, after which Bud became Head as well as President, retiring in 1992 after guiding the school for thirty-three years – the same tenure as his father-in-law. Over sixty-six years (1926-1992) Fred Smith and Bud Moore laid the groundwork for New Hampton in the 21st century, and the foundational work of both continues to ring through the vibrant campus today.

1970
1970

Co-Education Returns

Co-Education Returns

An important time of change: a new headmaster, computers, girls and leisure in the ‘70s. Lou Gnerre began teaching in 1957 and followed Bud Moore as Headmaster working to advance the school with the addition of girls and computers.

If not for a wrong turn, New Hampton would not have had the pleasure of Lou Gnerre on campus. He would stay for over thirty years (1957-1988). During Mr. Gnerre’s tenure at New Hampton School, he was appointed headmaster during a pivotal time of returning to co-education. In the ‘70s, the country was feeling the pressure of the Vietnam war, New Hampton School was no exception. With less male students applying, T. Holmes Moore and Lou Gnerre decided that it would benefit the school to bring girls back to campus and why not take minds off the Vietnam war with a Digital Corp. PDP 8-L computer.

In the Spring of 1969, a “long-range planning committee” was formed to talk about co-education. The committee consisted of faculty, alumni, parents, students, and townspeople. The main reason behind bringing girls back to campus was economics. The admissions office was limited in enrolling qualified students if the selection was a pool of boys only. T. Holmes Moore put forth four options: 1) remain the same, 2) bring in 30-50 day students girls, 3) go co-ed by 1970 by adding new facilities, or 4) utilizing the recent purchased Wolfe Estate slightly south of campus. It was the decision of the group to adopt number three and go coeducation in 1970.

1992
1992

Jeffrey Pratt Beedy is appointed Head of School

Jeffrey Pratt Beedy is appointed Head of School

Jeffrey Pratt Beedy (Ed.D. Harvard University) is appointed Head of School and creates the Total Human Development Model which was recognized as a National School of Character.

Dr. Beedy brought a new philosophy of education to New Hampton School. The Total Human Development Model had as its guiding principle the mission to nurture and shape the whole person within the whole community. The school-wide culture and curriculum were built around a development philosophy that informed everything the School did and embraced the values of respect and responsibility. THD provided the philosophical blueprint underlying the construction of five curriculum-driven dormitories; an 18,000 sq. ft. Academic Research Center, housing a state-of-the-art library and a faculty Research and Design Center; and a 30,000 sq. ft. Arts and Athletics Center. In 2002, New Hampton School’s commitment to character education was recognized by the Character Education Partnership by its selection as a National School of Character. Dr. Beedy resigned as headmaster in 2004.

1998
1998

Expanding Arts and Athletics

Expanding Arts and Athletics

Significant changes to the school’s architecture would once again happen on campus in the ‘90s including Arts, Athletics, Library and Lounge. 

Completed in 1987, the T. Holmes Moore Center represents more than just campus expansion; it is the dynamic center of campus life. Not only does it house a student center, a 400-seat theater, the Galletly [Art] Gallery and studios, photography lab, radio station, and classrooms, but it also serves as a bridge, linking the dining hall to the gymnasium. By design, it encourages interaction among students pursuing a variety of interests. The student lounge bears the name of 1919 graduate Helena Milne who remembered the school in her will. While the radio station no longer exists, it provided the space for the return of ceramics and created room for a new kiln and art supply storage (2017).

The Cottage, as many alumni fondly remember was removed to become the site of the Academic Research Center (ARC). The ARC stood at the pinnacle of an innovative student experience.  There was a need for a library encompassing more than books and although the Gordon-Nash Library continued to thrive as the town library, the school decided to erect a center for the forward-looking student. In 1997, by designs created by architect, trustee and parent, Herman Hassinger, the Academic Research Center was dedicated and became the data center with rows of computers hooked to ethernet cables connecting us to a plethora of information by way of the internet.

Shortly after the opening of the ARC, the school received a generous donation via a grant to round out the architectural improvements with additions to sports and music.

1998

Burleigh Mountain

The School acquires the remaining acreage on Burleigh Mountain. The frontside ski slope was purchased in 1969.

2002
2002

A School of Character

A School of Character

New Hampton School is recognized as a National School of Character by the Character Education Partnership. This follows years of committing to character-driven curricula and the development of our core beliefs of respect and responsibility.

2005
2005

Andrew Menke is appointed Head of School

Andrew Menke is appointed Head of School

Andrew Menke was appointed Head of School in January 2005. During a renaissance period at New Hampton, Mr. Menke guided the School through a comprehensive strategic planning process, began the most ambitious capital campaign in the institution’s history, helped make New Hampton the first boarding school in New England to offer the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program, and introduced iPads into the curriculum. In addition, the School continued its physical plant transformation in 2009 when the Pilalas Center for Math and Science opened. The building serves as tangible proof of New Hampton’s dedication to the teaching of these disciplines and the School’s continued growth and evolution. In the fall of 2014, Andrew Menke announced his resignation at the end of the 2015-2016 school year when he would depart New Hampton for a new leadership opportunity.

2009
2009

Pilalas Center for Math and Science

Pilalas Center for Math and Science

As often is the case, the trustees of New Hampton School faced a challenge with their existing academic building, Randall Hall, which had to be upgraded to meet the current learning styles and classroom technologies of today’s environment.  The solution was a new 28,000 square-foot math and science facility carefully designed and placed on the historic “Academic Row” of Main Street, New Hampton.  The building was designed with many environmentally responsible and energy-efficient features to serve the needs of the school for many years to come.

At its official dedication, Head of School Andrew Menke, Board of Trustees Chairman Peter Galletly, former Headmaster T. Holmes Moore, Science faculty Rebekka Joslin, and Troy Pilalas all offered remarks in the program that also included a keynote speech from Dr. Ross Virginia, the Myers Family Professor of Environmental Studies at Dartmouth College.

Jason Pilalas, who served in the Navy after New Hampton and went on to USC and then Harvard Business School, urged students to “wear out” the new building and take advantage of the opportunities it will afford. He also touched on the motivation behind his family’s generosity to New Hampton School. ”It’s a great feeling to help out the things you love,” he said.

2010
2010

International Students and the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program

International Students and the International Baccalaureate Diploma Program

International Students and New Hampton School

From the early days of its founding 200 years ago, New Hampton School has had a global presence that translated to a richer environment for the whole community. In its first two decades (1821-1841) fifteen international students left their homes to attend NHS while boarding with local families. Since then, hundreds more have followed, coming from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Brazil, Cameroon, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cote d’Ivoire, Cuba, Curacao, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, France, Gabon, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Iran, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Latvia, Lithuania, Macao, Mexico, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Norway, P. R. China, Pakistan, Peru, Rep. of Korea, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad & Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Venezuela, Vietnam, Virgin Islands, and Wales and other countries.

Early Days – John K. Simpson, Entrepreneur & Baptist Missionaries

Why would students sail halfway around the world to attend a new school in the woods of New Hampshire in the 1830s and 1840s? Two probable reasons were the missionary spirit of the times and the marketing skills of the Boston merchant and key NHS founder, John K. Simpson. Even prior to opening day on Monday, September 17, 1821, Simpson was indefatigable in his efforts to recruit boarding students from Boston, and soon had students coming from all over New England. Never shy about promoting the value of NHS, Simpson’s reach, built on his domestic and international business contacts,  extended well beyond the northeast and drew students from Canada, Greece, Sweden, Peru, and Great Britain, as well as Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Florida, and the “Wisconsin Territories.”

Along with boarding students from Boston, New Hampton Academy opened with strong ties to the Baptist church and its global network of missionaries. A number of the academic courses were geared to training ministers and missionaries. In 1826 the school changed its name to the Academical and Theological Institution at New Hampton, and ensuing trustees, heads, faculty and students came from Baptist congregations engaged in work for the church around the world.

Early International Connections

Rev. Otis Bacheler, M.D. D.D. was a missionary in India for more than half a century. In 1856 he acquired a house in New Hampton (still standing) that he leased to NHS as a boarding house for students when he returned to India. His son Albert, born and raised in Midnapore, India, came back to enlist in the Civil War and the Bacheler family followed. While his father served on the board and executive committee of NHS, Albert graduated from NHS in 1867 and then Dartmouth in 1871. He began a lengthy career as an educator, serving as principal in a number of schools, including in Manchester, NH.

Professor Joseph W. Chadwick, 1857 graduate of NHS who served as head of New Hampton from 1862-1866, described how he learned about the school: “I owe it to Dr. Otis Bacheler that I am here today. In one of his trips he stopped at my father’s house, and persuaded my parents to send me to New Hampton to school. That was the opening of life for me.’ Doubtless many others could give a like testimony [as] many date the beginning of their interest in missions to the stirring addresses of Dr. Bacheler.”[1] Chadwick continued,  “A word should be said of Dr. Bacheler as a trustee and member of the executive committee of New Hampton Institution. First, last, and always, he was a missionary, but he was at the same time broad enough to embrace other worthy interests. He was always interested in the prosperity of the Institution, never sparing of his advice, time, or money, when the interest or prosperity of the Institution was in question. He was among her earliest and best friends.[2] Upon retirement from missionary work, Dr. Bachelor, along with helping NHS, practiced as a dentist and oral surgeon and gave the occasional illustrated lecture (with 35 transparent views) on “The Manners, Customs and Religion of the Hindoos.”

Setting the Course for NHS Today

Throughout the 1950s through 1980s, a steady stream of international students continued to contribute in class, in the studio, on stage, in clubs, and on the playing fields. Kent Bicknell ’65 states, “In my senior year, I was fortunate to share the soccer pitch with the talented goalkeeper, Edwardo Carerro of Mexico City. He moved with the grace, agility and anticipation of a large cat, and it was the first time I played with a goalie who could anticipate and stop penalty shots!” Eight years later, T. Holmes Moore’s son, Rob ‘73, was part of a very talented team that included current NHS Board of Trustees President, Karl Kimball ‘74 and past President, Peter Galletley ‘73. In Rob’s words:

The soccer team in the fall of 1972 was a convergence of athletes from all different backgrounds that came together to gel, then excel, compiling a 9-3-1 record while winning the Lakes Region Championship.

Four students who hailed from other countries, three from Germany and one from Thailand, brought key ingredients to the team.  Anchoring the team in goal and decisively directing the players in front of him was Guenter Stricker ‘73.  At midfield, were Peter Heil ‘73 and Todd Suvannachive ‘74. Peter could control just about any ball and distribute it adeptly. Todd was like an acrobat weaving through opposing players, then serving up a perfect pass.  Up front, senior Egbert Zimmerman ‘73 brought ruthless grace and beauty to the field with runs that would stun and goals that would awe.

Midfielder Karl Kimball ‘74 said of Guenter’s goalkeeping, “I had played goalie before coming to New Hampton, so I knew a lot about the position. I was in awe of Guenter’s positioning, grit, and how he would take control of the field.”

Defender Pete Galletly ‘73 remembers how these international students showed us how to play a different kind of game with a new dimension, opening the field, distributing the ball with patience yet just the right opportunism to score goals.  

NHS Hall of Fame Coach Dave Rice was a genius with positioning, directing us from the sidelines—an omnipresent cigarette hanging from his mouth—making small adjustments to tweak the lineup so the chemistry was just right.  Assistant Coach Peter Bixby was a master motivator who could outrun most of us at practice and who pushed us hard to be better than we thought we could be.

Co-captain Brad Boyce ’73 remembers that from his place at center midfield he could rely on these adept and inspiring teammates to distribute, create, and accomplish with controlled composure, slowing the game down.  Brad credits them with teaching us to pass the ball back to create space and to slow the game down—a tactic which won us some games we would not have won otherwise, a tactic that American high school soccer generally had not yet evolved.

We American boys learned lessons that played out off the field as well. About life and people, they taught us to broaden our horizons and not only to be curious about people who come from another culture with new ideas and perspectives, but to pay attention to and acquire new skills and understandings.

About “the beautiful game”, they taught us that a team is built on the alchemy of great preparation, the notion that each player has his role, and the certainty that a mistake is an opportunity to learn how to do better next time. When that chemistry is present, the results are both elegant and fun, no matter where in the world the beautiful game is played.

Rob Moore ‘73 Team Co-Captain

Ms. Xinying Wang, NHS ‘20 – Commencement 2020 Speaker

Continuing the international tradition, Xinying “Sally” Wang spoke as the Cum Laude Society Member at the 2020 Commencement to her classmates, families and guests:

My journey at New Hampton School has been life-changing. As an international student who transitioned from a public middle school in China, I remember the challenges during my freshman year. I did not know how to write a hypothesis, I felt shy in my biology class; I would spend hours completing an English reading assignment, only not to dare share my thoughts in class; I felt acutely the cultural and language gap, which made me afraid to communicate. It was not easy. 

Now, I am graduating. I have written multiple full lab reports. I have successfully designed a lab and completed several IB Internal Assessments (even though teachers still wish I would, “share out more often”). The support from teachers and peers has been indispensable in this learning process, as my teachers ignited my interests in various subjects, and my peers showed me how to be a leader as well as demonstrating what ‘diverse’ and ‘inclusive’ mean. I have become a better person – a person who is more open-minded and capable of taking on responsibilities, and who is much more mature and confident when encountering challenges and failures. Yet I recognize I still need to improve.  

NHS Adopts the International Baccalaureate Program in 2010

In 2010, NHS announced it had become the first boarding school in New England approved to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma. The IB program is rigorous, the curriculum is interconnected, and there is a focus on analytically based learning and its applications – on the “why” of learning. An NHS student who completes the program earns an IB diploma that carries recognition and respect from universities around the world. Endowing NHS with a dynamic IB Program attracted more international students who were eager to experience the ever wider-range of academics, visual and performing arts, athletics, service program and independent projects to be found in the hills of New Hampshire.

Perhaps the most basic criterion for evaluating a school – whether deciding to apply, to attend, to teach at, to donate to – is to determine whether it lives its mission. There is no doubt that NHS “cultivates lifelong learners who will serve as active global citizens” – and that it has been doing so for 200 years.

[1] Rev. Otis Robinson Bacheler, M.D. D.D. : Fifty-three Years Missionary to India by Rev. Thomas Hobbs Stacy [Boston 1904], pp. 462-463.

[2] Ibid, p. 487.

2016
2016

 Joe Williams begins his tenure as Head of School

 Joe Williams begins his tenure as Head of School

In 2016, Joe Williams begins his tenure as Head of School. Joe was raised as a faculty child at Lawrence Academy, where he also went to school. He attended Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine where he played basketball and met his wife Eileen. Joe worked for several years at boarding schools following his undergraduate program. For seven years, he briefly shifted his focus to the business world, working for Reebok International, before he and Eileen decided to return to boarding schools to live, work, and raise their family.

During a nineteen-year tenure at Kimball Union Academy, Joe Williams served in several capacities including Assistant Head of School for External Affairs, where he oversaw the coordination between admissions, advancement, and communications. He also introduced grade-specific leadership programs and developed a residential life and social curriculum with an emphasis on educating the whole child. Joe also spent several years as the Director of Admission at KUA, where he focused on strategic outreach to maximize yield and match while working with then-current parents and alumni to advance recruiting efforts. During his tenure at Kimball Union Academy, Joe received an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from the University of Vermont. Joe, Eileen, and their children, Charlie, Cooper, Tucker, and Carter live in Smith House with their two dogs, Bowdoin and Bentley. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family at their house in southern Maine, stand-up paddleboarding, playing golf, and fly-fishing.

2016

Animation with the Walt Disney Family Museum

Animation with the Walt Disney Family Museum

New Hampton commences partnership with the Walt Disney Museum in San Francisco, California.

In 2016, New Hampton implemented the pilot course “Animation with the Walt Disney Family Museum,” an exploration of animation techniques offered through the Art Department and co-taught by Art faculty and Disney educators. The success of the course has led to ongoing programs with the Walt Disney Family Museum, including a developing curriculum in animation and a summer camp. These challenging and exciting courses challenge students in visual principles, action analysis, physics, cinematography, acting, and storytelling. New Hampton School is proud to partner with the Disney Museum and is currently exploring ways of developing the relationship in launching an At-Risk Youth Animation Academy in San Francisco, CA.

2016

Jacobson Arena: A New Era for New Hampton Hockey

Jacobson Arena: A New Era for New Hampton Hockey

With a large lead gift from the GO BEYOND campaign chairman, Dean Jacobson ’68, the vision of an ice hockey arena was realized. The new facility includes a sunken ice surface for improved viewing angles, a heated spectator room, bleachers, spacious varsity locker rooms, and offices for the coaches. With construction costs rising year after year, a repair bill to the previous rink, Lindsay Arena, in excess of $1 million, and an accelerated fundraising effort which pushed the early commitments, the board felt confident in the timing. The rink finished in advance of the 2016-2017 hockey season.

On Friday, November 4th [2016] at 4:30 pm, New Hampton Trustees, alumni, staff and varsity hockey programs gathered to formally dedicate Jacobson Arena, an exceptional opportunity for the school’s hockey programs. Special guests at the dedication included Trustee Dean Jacobson ’68 who enabled the construction of Jacobson through his generosity and spurred the building project with his entrepreneurial spirit and enthusiasm. Former Head of School Andrew Menke also joined the dedication and spoke of the growing prominence of New Hampton’s hockey program, and the clear need to give the student-athletes and school the advantage they deserve with a state-of-the-art facility to grow the hockey program.

Two senior hockey team members were honored to speak at the dedication, Cayla Barnes ’17 from Corona California and Max Osborne ’17 from Anchorage Alaska. Cayla noted the time that she and her teammates spend at the rink during hockey season: “I am really looking forward to Jacobson Arena because it will be our new home. A place where we eat, sleep, and breathe hockey. This arena will see big overtime wins and some heartbreaking losses, but the heart of Husky Hockey will electrify this building, making it come to life.”

Director of Athletics, Jamie Arsenault reflected with great enthusiasm, “The vision and execution of Jacobson Arena is an effort of many, and we are thrilled to open this facility. Not only will our Hockey Programs have access to an incredibly sophisticated facility, but we look forward to seeing Husky Nation, our fellow schools and local community members brought together by an exceptional arena in which to celebrate a beloved sport.”

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