Did you know you visit all six New England states in less than one hour? Take a stroll along the Avenue of States inside replicas of each state’s original statehouse built on land owned by that state. Step inside and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and tastes of New England.
MASSACHUSETTS STATE BUILDING AUDIO TOURMAINE BUILDING STATE AUDIO TOUR
Though America was at war in 1918 and the Eastern States Exposition temporarily halted, Joshua L. Brooks convinced the Massachusetts Legislature and a highly skeptical governor to spend $50,000 to erect the Massachusetts Building. Architect James H. Ritchie was hired to design a replica of the old Massachusetts Statehouse. The building was dedicated in 1919 by then Gov. Calvin Coolidge and marked the official beginning of the Avenue of States. Today the building features agricultural and horticultural exhibits as well as tourist attractions and performing groups from the Commonwealth. You’ll also find a variety of home-grown tastes, from scrumptious cranberries to selections from the sea, as well as Massachusetts-crafted products and travel information.
Maine was the next state after Massachusetts to erect a building along the Avenue. The dignified colonial structure was built in 1925 at a cost of $50,000. Just a short walk from Massachusetts building, the Maine building features local food, products and a wealth of vacation information about this beautiful northeastern-most state. You’ll have a chance to try Maine’s famous blueberries, smoked salmon, devour a Maine baked potato with all the fixin’s, a Maine lobster roll or a whoopie pie. The public can participate in special Maine Day activities showcasing the Pine Tree State. Information on hunting, fishing, camping, snowmobiling and skiing is also available in the building.
VERMONT STATE BUILDING AUDIO TOUR
The Avenue’s third addition appeared in 1929 with the construction of the Vermont Building, a Georgian structure that boasts marble corners, window sills and columns, at a cost of more than $60,500. In Vermont, you can check out clothing that will keep you looking sharp in all seasons, breathe in the fragrances of candles and coffee beans or tempt your tastebuds with fresh apple pie and cheddar cheese – two delicious reasons to visit the Green Mountain State. From ski vacations to maple syrup and gourmet ice cream, the Vermont Building offers something for everyone.
NEW HAMPSHIRE STATE BUILDING AUDIO TOUR
Although the country was in the midst of the depression in 1930, the New Hampshire Building was constructed at a cost of $75,000. This majestic structure was built using New Hampshire granite for its columns and trim and features a curved porch and tall columns similar in style to the White House. A state map is built into the main entrance walk showing the state’s counties and major cities. As a visitor to New Hampshire you can enjoy special demonstrations representing the Granite State, including wood and decoy carving, cheese carving, spinning and weaving, stenciling, basket making and much more.
CONNECTICUT STATE BUILDING AUDIO TOURRHODE ISLAND STATE BUILDING AUDIO TOUR
Governor Wilbur C. Cross placed the cornerstone of the Connecticut Building on Sept. 20, 1938, just as the mighty “Hurricane of ’38” hit the fairgrounds. The building was officially opened and dedicated the following year. At a cost of $85,000, the fifth addition to the Avenue was modeled after the Old Statehouse in Hartford. With its famous Bulfinch front, the building features brownstone, brick and dignified wooden columns. In Connecticut you’ll learn about the history, agriculture, commerce, natural resources and industries of the Nutmeg State. The Connecticut building also features exhibits on popular tourist attractions and a wide variety of native products.
The $150,000 Rhode Island Building was dedicated in 1957, marking the completion of the Avenue of States and the realization of Joshua Brooks’ dream. The building is a replica of the Old Statehouse that is now preserved as a shrine in Newport. In the Rhode Island building, you’ll see exhibits featuring fine gold and sterling silver, posters and handiwork, and get a chance to sample some of The Ocean State’s sea foods. You’ll also find information about the state’s beautiful coastline and inland attractions that may just entice you to pack your bags and head for a visit to “L’il Rhody.”