"Hard Luck to High Tech" Top 5 Page for this destination Manchester by gilescorey

Manchester Travel Guide: 67 reviews and 107 photos

New HampChic

I have family nearby, and always fly in and out of the snazzy airport. Manchester seems as though it could use a little polish, but the millyard & adjacent neighborhoods look like a tale from Dickens...not unlike Society Hill in Philadelphia. And, if you want a cosmopolitan experience in New Hampshire, Manchester is a best bet. Some lovely shops line downtown, as well as some stellar restaurants.

"A New Englander's Guide to Saving a City"

The "Queen City" began as a small farming village at the beginning of the 18th Century. However, an ambitious industrialist named Samuel Blodget envisioned Derryfield(as it was then named) as an industrial giant. The promise was in the crashing Amoskeag falls, and the goal was not only to harness these for power, but to build canals allowing shipping of goods between points North, and Massachusetts Bay Colony/Boston to the South. Blodget succeeded, and the Amoskeag Mills were born. Derryfield became "Manchester", named for that British capital of the Industrial revolution, and tens of thousands immigrated to the New Hampshire city for work - the lion's share, French Canadiens. This early immigration is reflected in the Manchester of today. Few cities in New England can boast of the diversity Manchester holds. Furthermore, Manchester is still the second French-speaking city in the U.S.(after New Orleans).

The rise of the South towards the turn of the 20th century, meant the fall of Manchester. The Amoskeag Corporation declared bankruptcy, and prominent Manchester citizens banded together trying in vain to rejuvenate the city.

Manchester, Today

In the grand scope of events, Manchester has only found considerable new footing since the early-mid 1990's. High tech landed in the region, taking advantage of New Hampshire's friendly tax base, and the airport became an important alternative to Boston's clogged Logan. Money from both has streamed into the city and urban renewal has taken firm footing. The crown of Manchester's tech-achievements is DEKA. Dean Kamen's corporation settled in the once-decrepit Millyard. Mr. Kamen has nearly single-handedly brought new attention to the city, and his Segway transporter, based in Manchester, brings modern prestige to a city rich in history

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Great architecture, and savvy for NH
  • Cons:Useless outside of Downtown
  • In a nutshell:Charming, but rough around the edges
  • Last visit to Manchester: Jul 2010
  • Intro Updated Aug 3, 2010
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Reviews (20)

Comments (8)

  • Pawtuxet's Profile Photo
    Jul 7, 2011 at 6:22 AM

    Thanks so much for a nice assortment of suggestions. We're headed up to NH soon and hope to check out all your hints. Good job!

  • Dec 11, 2008 at 3:26 PM

    Nice job. Nice tips!

  • Nov 30, 2006 at 6:38 PM

    Are you from Manchester? I am from Lowell, MA. Nice page!

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Jun 9, 2006 at 6:41 PM

    thanks for the tips!

  • Mar 7, 2006 at 12:36 PM

    It would be interesting to compare this to the first Manchester here in England, to see how much they are alike!

  • biljah's Profile Photo
    Dec 18, 2004 at 4:30 PM

    Manchester is my hometown! I like your page. I sometimes miss living there...

  • Apr 15, 2004 at 6:46 PM

    I was born & raised in Lowell, Massachusetts, & spent many hours of my days loitering in the Millyard. It’s absolutely splendid to see a page of Manchester on VT.

  • diver-x's Profile Photo
    Jan 19, 2004 at 8:34 AM

    Great tips! I grew up in Amherst and lived in Manchester & surrounds for a number of years. Also worked in a photo lab in an old mill building on Bedford St. in 1980's. Velcro USA has been in Manch. for years too. Lots of industry there.

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