Rockingham County Poor Farm & Cemetery, North Road, Brentwood NH
A list of burials with corresponding numbers for all, or most, of the burials from the Rockingham County Farm in the RCNH Cemetery is available at the Mary E. Bartlett Library, 22 Dalton Road, Brentwood, NH. Most gravestones are marked with number only. Stop at Sheriff's office next door first to get permission.
The Rockingham County Home & Hospital aka Poor Farm, Insane Asylum, Almshouse etc. was established in 1868 and remains in use today, although a bit differently. Today it still houses the Rockingham County Sheriff's Office, County Jail, RCNH Cemetery, the highly respected Rockingham County Nursing Home, and now also includes The UNH Cooperative Extension Office.
It is said to have been built to hold up to 250 paupers, and it eventually grew to include several buildings on the fully functioning 200 acre farm in which "inmates" worked. Although poorhouses & almshouses don't generally bring to mind thoughts of joyful & pleasant lives, this was one of the few poor-farms that was said to be rather pleasant and even held a library for the use of its residents. In the later part of the 1800's residents included not only paupers, & the mentally ill, but often paying boarders, & elders with medical illnesses who had no one to care for them. Although towns in the county had their own "overseers of the poor", & many towns had poorhouses of their own for decades prior, this was the primary location countywide in the later half of the 19th Century. The Rockingham County Farm first began to change over to more of a medical model with the inclusion of the Mitchell Hospital, built in 1935 (closed 1944-1952, during WWII) & later the addition of the Fernald Nursing Home built in 1958.
Amylynne (Baker) Murphy
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