Moultonborough Falls Conservation Area
The 37 acres of Moultonborough Falls Conservation Area was part of the thriving village of Moultonborough Falls in the 1800’s. Located on the Red Hill River near the intersection of what is now Sheridan Road and Route 25, it extends back to the marshlands of Lee’s Pond. Historical photographs from the time show houses of the area that are still occupied, although most have undergone extensive renovations. Numerous foundations can still be found on some properties and the cemetery from the era is still maintained.
In 1765 John Moulton built a grist and saw mill where Sheridan Road joins Route 25, establishing the Red Hill River and Garland Pond as a power source for industrial growth. The mills were later expanded to include a carding and fulling mill. At one time Moultonborough Falls had three stores, two hotels, a tannery, a currier’s shop, a blacksmith, a sleigh and carriage maker, a saddle and harness maker, a printing office, shoe shops, and a cluster of homes.
Before John Moulton’s early grist mill, the Red Hill River flowed from Garland Pond into Lake Winnipesaukee. There was a road from the Lees Mills area across what is now an island in Lees Pond and through the property to be preserved. Dams built at the southern end of Garland Pond and at Lee’s Mills backed up the Red Hill River creating Lee’s Pond.
By 1900, Moultonborough Falls had lost its claim to being the center of town, when Moultonborough Corner had grown into a firmly established village with its stores, post office, church, library, Grange, physicians, a lawyer and the seat of town government.
The property has an historical value, in addition to the conservation value for wildlife habitats and water quality.