Created By: Henniker Historical Society
In March 1936, an unusually warm and wet weather pattern set up over the northeast. Three separate weather systems passed over New England in a 2-week period. The result was a rapid thaw of snow and ice that had accumulated over a colder than normal winter. Catastrophic flooding and erosion occurred on every watershed throughout the region. Lives were lost and many were left homeless across New England.
This record setting flood was equaled a mere two years later during the catastrophic Hurricane of 1938. As a result, the U.S. Congress passed a Flood Control Act which locally became the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Hopkinton-Everett Dam project.
The town of Henniker, with its numerous water bodies, was significantly impacted by the flood event. There was severe flooding of low lying areas all along the Contoocook River from Old Concord and River roads to West Henniker village. Property loss was significant. Most notable, was the destruction of the steel bridge along Ramsdell Road (formerly Commercial Street) on March 19, 1936.
For those physically participating in the walking tour, park in the lower public lot along the river’s edge behind the Main Street commercial buildings.To access the parking area from the intersection of Route 114 and Main Street, go south on Route 114 approximately 100 feet and take the entrance on your left just before crossing the stone bridge. The tour is 0.61 miles in length.