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New Monument for the Man Who Named New England


Smith 2014 Monument Rye-State Park

New Hampshire pays tribute

David Campbell loves American history. A native of Newport, NH, Canpbell is a Harvard grad, an attorney, and a long-time state representative from Nashua. Like most Americans, he knew about Capt. John Smith from the explorer's 1607 connection to Jamestown, Virginia and to Pocahontas, the Native American princess. Then he made a discovery. Smith had been here too.

"You were my mentor on John Smith in New England," Campbell tells me on the phone. "Your articles about him on the Web were definitely where my early research started."

Suddenly aware that the 400th anniversary of Smith's visit to the Isles of Shoals was looming, Campbell took action. He proposed a brand new monument, paid for by state and private funds, and erected in a highly public spot on the mainland.  Last fall, through the Committee on Public Works and Highways, Campbell was able to appropriate $40,000 for the memorial, and then raise additional private funds.

Smith's new monument, like the original one on StarIsland, is an obelisk, this time made of New Hampshire granite, not wood. It will stand 16 feet, 14 inches, and weights 36,000 pounds. An inscription will tell RyeHarborState Park visitors a surprising tale. Smith's widely-read book A Description of New England urged investors to  and adventurers to discover this region's "teeming fish banks, abundant game, clean waters, vast forests, and native people."

Smith obelisk manufactured

John Smith Monument 2014 continued

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Tuesday, February 20, 2018 
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