Hard to believe, but at the turn of the 20th Century, this stretch of dense interior forest along an inconspicuous mountain stream was a fully functioning town with a schoolhouse, store, homes, a power plant and more. It was here that the Saunders family of Lawrence, MA built a sawmill in 1875, helped incorporate the town of Livermore in 1876, and began construction of the Sawyer River Railroad in 1877. The town population swelled to a peak of 190 residents in support of the lumber operation, but fires, floods, timber-damaging storms and other hardships led to the decline and eventual dissolving of the town, a lifecycle shared by many logging villages in the White Mountains. The land was sold to the federal government for inclusion in the White Mountain National Forest in 1937. Today, a walk just off the Sawyer River road, parts of which were once railroad bed, reveals all that is left of the town. New forest, mosses and generations of fallen leaves have not totally hidden the remains of the sawmill, powerhouse and other structures.
IMPORTANT: Historic places on the national forest are protected by federal law. Please leave it where you find it for the benefit of future generations!
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Directions to Next Site:
Our next stop on the Weeks Act Legacy Trail is a trail itself. Return to Rte 302 and continue west about 6.8 miles to the Webster Cliff Trail on the right, part of the famous Appalachian Trail.