Massabesic Audubon Center
The 5,000 square foot Massabesic Audubon Center is located on a historic farm site. The Center is just minutes from downtown Manchester and is bordered by 130 acres of rolling fields and mature deciduous forest with woodland wetlands, a pond, streams, and marshes. The site has been preserved as a wildlife sanctuary that encompasses a diverse array of upland habitats. There are more than five miles of trails that lead to scenic Lake Massabesic, and the property is adjacent to thousands of undeveloped acres of Manchester Water Works land.
About Battery Point
The Center is situated on a point of land known as Battery Point on Lake Massabesic in Auburn, N.H. The Town of Auburn was incorporated in 1845 and was originally part of the Town of Chester. Auburn began as a booming mill and farm town supplying commodities to Manchester and beyond. Saw-, grist-, tool-, and fulling-mills (linen) lined the town’s many streams and river banks. Hospitality and recreation were also vibrant industries.
The Lake became the main source of water for the city of Manchester with the establishment of the Manchester Water Works in 1870. In its heyday it was a prime summertime destination for city workers. There was trolley service to the lake, half a dozen sightseeing steam boats, and many hotels and music halls nearby. In winter, Manchester Coal and Ice operated on the northern shore of the lake to harvest, store, and sell ice for use in the summers before electricity. Massabesic ice was in high demand because of its purity; it was used locally and shipped via rail to Boston and points beyond.
The Center is located on the historic Brown Farm. Luther Brown and his father Joseph Brown owned the farm through the 1800s until purchase by the Parker Farm circa 1900. The land supported livestock, produce and timber operations.