Samuel K. Bell estate on Great Boar's Head, early 1900s



Samuel K. Bell estate on Great Boar's Head, early 1900s


Bell, Samuel K.
Dow, Albert N.
Avery, Philip S.
Greenman, Charles
Fifty Steps
Great Boar's Head


The Samuel K. Bell estate on Great Boar's Head, early 1900s. Randall's history of Hampton (p.311-2) writes that after a 1904 auction of property on the Head, 12 to 15 cottages were built, "with the finest one constructed on the tip of the Head by Albert Dow, who paid $1,600 for his lot. A few years later, about 1914, Dow sold his land to Samuel K. Bell of Exeter, and Dow moved his house a few lots down on the north slope. In front of his house, Dow built a breakwater and planted grass to protect the slope. Bell bought another lot and a half, investing some $20,000 in land, and hired Boston architect Philip S. Avery to design the Tudor-style house that still occupies the site, which many people believe has the best view on the New Hampshire coast. At the south edge of Bell's property were the fishermen's stairs, also called Fifty Steps, a right-of-way down the bank to a small fish house and boat landing used by fishermen and gunners for many years. To protect his privacy, Bell built a wall, and since the steps would have been inside his property, he negotiated with the Town to have them moved and provided a 6-foot right-of-way. Some years later, Charles Greenman, whose father Charles had acquired the Bell property, became concerned because "lovers" and sightseers often walked down the steps and around on the breakwater to the front of his property. He feared smokers would set the grass on fire and perhaps burn his house; so, when the steps were in need of repair, he convinced the Town to remove them rather than replace them."


Randall's History of Hampton, p.313.




Hayden, Helen Worledge






Great Boar's Head
Building Exterior(s)


“Samuel K. Bell estate on Great Boar's Head, early 1900s,” Lane Memorial Library, accessed July 13, 2024,