Jefferson Turnpike, White Mountains

Old Jefferson Turnpike (now Old Cherry Mountain Road) in the White Mountains, New Hampshire during the autumn months.
Old Cherry Mountain Road – White Mountains, New Hampshire

Jefferson Turnpike, White Mountains – The Jefferson Turnpike Incorporation (Jefferson Turnpike) was incorporated on December 11, 1804; the turnpike opened in 1811. Incorporators were Joseph Whipple, Obed Hall, and Stephen Wilson. This short-lived toll road traveled from the 10th New Hampshire Turnpike (today’s Route 302 ) in Carroll, New Hampshire, over Cherry Mountain to Jefferson and Lancaster. It's believed that the old Cherry Mountain Road, a seasonal road with dispersed roadside camping, follows the route of the old turnpike.

Not long after the turnpike opened, it fell into disrepair and reports from 1824 indicate that it was impassable and near abandonment. It would eventually be abandoned after a destructive rainstorm in August 1826 created havoc along the turnpike; this rainstorm is responsible for the landslide in Crawford Notch that killed the Willey family. Even though the turnpike was abandoned, horse travel likely continued across the road.

Fabyan Guard Station along old Jefferson Turnpike (now Old Cherry Mountain Road) in the White Mountains, New Hampshire during the summer months. Built in 1923 by Clifford Graham, it is the last remaining guard station in the White Mountain National Forest. The cabin was built using spruce logs from the surrounding area.
Fabyan Guard Station – Old Cherry Mountain Road, Carroll

Along old Cherry Mountain Road (old Jefferson Turnpike) is the Fabyan Guard Station. This log cabin, built of spruce logs in 1923 by Clifford L. Graham, was the first administrative building built by the Forest Service on White Mountain National Forest land; it is the last remaining guard station in the White Mountain National Forest. In 2014, with the help of HistoriCorps, the guard station was restored. And in May 2018, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Guard stations, like the Fabyan Cabin, housed Forest Guards (employees of the Forest Service), and their job was to protect the forest.

Reflection of autumn foliage on Mount Deception in a small pond along Old Cherry Mountain Road in Carroll, New Hampshire USA during the autumn months.
Old Cherry Mountain Road – Mount Deception, New Hampshire

One of the highlights of old Cherry Mountain Road is a roadside pond (above) that offers an incredible view of Mount Deception. This pond is a great location to view wildlife. Moose and bears are often seen in the area. And during the autumn season, the reflection of Mount Deception in the pond is breathtaking.

This road is closed during the winter season, but during the spring, summer, and autumn seasons, travelers can drive it. See Forest Service's seasonal roads status page to find out if the road is open. To license any of the above images for usage in publications, click on the image.

Happy image making..


© Erin Paul Donovan. All rights reserved | Historic Information Disclaimer | Prints of Old Cherry Mountain Road

Donovan, Erin Paul. “Fabyan Guard Station, Carroll.” ScenicNH Photography LLC, 14 Apr 2023, .

Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of New-Hampshire, at Their Session, June Session. Exeter, NH: Samuel T. Moses, 1824.

Somers, Amos Newton. History of Lancaster, New Hampshire. Concord, NH: The Rumford Press, 1898.

The following two tabs change content below.
Erin Paul is a professional photographer, writer, and author who specializes in environmental conservation and historic preservation photography in the New Hampshire White Mountains. His work is published worldwide, and credits include; Backpacker Magazine, Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the Appalachian Mountain Club, and The Wilderness Society.

Latest posts by Erin Paul Donovan (see all)

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>