Complete Guide to Saint Gaudens National Historical Park in New Hampshire including history, things to do, tours, directions, hours, and so much more.
Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
Augustus Saint-Gaudens is considered one of America's finest sculptors. He was the designer of the double eagle gold coin that is considered one of the most beautiful coins minted in this country.
Saint Gaudens National Historic Site is the homesite of Augustus Saint-Gauden in New Hampshire.
About Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
The grounds include his home, Aspet, gardens, and over one hundred of his sculptures are on display.
Some of Augustus Saint-Gaudens famous sculptures include
- Standing Lincoln in Chicago
- Adams Memorial in Washington DC
- Robert Gould Shaw Memorial in Boston
- Statue of General William T. Sherman in New York's Central Park
- 1907 $20 gold coin
Is Saint Gaudens National Historical Park worth visiting?
One thing we learned visiting Saint Gaudens NHS is this park is great for an afternoon of wandering around and exploring. Make sure and wear shoes you are comfortable walking in the grass in and give yourself enough time to explore.
We thought that this park would maybe take an hour or two at most and we honestly could have spent a lot longer wandering the park. There is not a ton of shade so make sure you have sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, and water with you.
There are Saint Gaudens sculptures spread around the property so it feels like a bit of a scavenger hunt to find them all.
We truly feel this is one of the best places to visit in New Hampshire!
History of Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
Saint-Gaudens National Historical Park preserves the home, studio, and gardens of one of America's greatest sculptures, Augustus Saint-Gaudens.
The home was used by Saint-Gaudens as his temporary residence from 1885 until 1897. In 1900 Saint-Gaudens lived permanently in the home.
Built in the 1800s, the home originally belonged to a friend of Saint-Gaudens, from whom he rented the house during the summer months.
The sculpture converted the barn into his studio and fell in love with the property and town. In 1892 the Saint-Gaudens bought the home and renamed it Aspet in honor of the birthplace of Saint-Gauden's father.
Before the property became a National Park, the home and grounds of Saint-Gaudens was the center of an artist’s colony.
Augustus Saint-Gaudens is most famed for his incredibly life-like bronze monuments to American heroes, and the design of the $20 Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle gold coin.
Saint-Gaudens is credited with creating and developing an American school of art during the American Renaissance. His unique style inspired and continues to inspire not just American artists, but artists from every corner of the globe.
Who was Augustus Saint-Gaudens?
The American sculpturer was born in Ireland in 1846 but immigrated with his family to New York City when he was just 6 months old. Saint-Gaudens grew up in the city.
He expressed his interest in art from a young age, and at 13 he entered the working world. Saint-Gaudens took art classes while working as an apprentice cameo cutter.
When he was 19, Saint-Gaudens traveled to Paris where he studied at the prestigious École des Beaux-Arts. After Paris, he spent five years in Rome where he worked on his first commissioned sculpture.
Public Memorial's Created by Saint-Gaudens
Saint-Gaudens first public piece was commissioned in 1876. It was a monument to the Civil War hero, Admiral David Glasgow Farragut.
Farragut was a highly decorated Navy Admiral who was the first person to be given the rank of Vice Admiral, Rear Admiral, and full Admiral in the U.S Navy.
The monument, which is situated in Maddison Square Gardens, was completed in 1881 and catapulted Saint-Gaudens career during which he completed over 150 works.
Saint-Gaudens went on to design several monuments that have helped to preserve America's collective memory.
In 1887, Saint-Gaudens created the impressive bronze statue of America's 16th President, Abraham Lincoln in Lincoln Park, Chicago, titled Abraham Lincoln: The Man. This piece is considered to be the most exceptional bronze portrait in America.
Saint-Gaudens created several impressive memorial pieces after Abraham Lincoln’s portrait.
Saint-Gaudens created the William T. Sherman Memorial in New York. One of the most widely praised of Saint-Gaudens works is the Robert Gould Shaw Memorial on Boston Common, completed in 1897. It is often referred to as a symphony in bronze.
The Robert Gould Shaw Memorial took the artist 14 years to complete. The memorial was the first time in American history that African American men had been memorialized in a dignified manner.
In 1905 Saint-Gaudens was commissioned by President Theodore Roosevelt to design a gold coin for the U.S mint. Saint-Gaudens designed the $20 coin in a distinctly Roman manner.
The exquisitely detailed coin featured lady Liberty holding her iconic torch and an olive branch. The figure is encircled by 46 stars, framed by sunrays, with the U.S Capitol building in the background. The coin is considered to be the most beautiful U.S coin to be minted.
The Home of Saint-Gaudens
Saint-Gaudens fell in love with the New Hampshire town of Cornish when he visited the home of his friend in 1885. From that time onwards, Saint-Gaudens and his family would spend summers in the home.
Saint-Gaudens alerted the house to suit his creative needs and converted the barn into his studio. Sadly his studio burnt down twice during the artist's residency.
The influential artist purchased the home and used it as his permanent residence from 1900 when he was diagnosed with cancer. Saint-Gaudens drew many artists to the area, all eager to learn from or be inspired by Saint-Gaudens.
The home of Saint-Gaudens formed the center and meeting place for the artists who made up the Cornish Art Colony. Saint-Gaudens employed several artists as assistants to help him complete his orders.
During his time at Aspet, Saint-Gaudens was a member of the team appointed to redesign Washington D.C’s Mall.
Saint-Gaudens lived and created what is now the Saint-Gaudens National Historical Park until he died in 1907.
After his death, the Cornish Artist Colony slowly began to move on. Members of the colony were involved with the development of camouflage.
The idea and development of camouflage for use in the American military started in 1917 when America entered the Great War.
Things to know before your visit to Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
$10.00 per person entrance fee
The entrance fee to the park is $10.00 for adults 16 years of age and older; children 15 and younger are free. The entrance fee provides the visitor with a 7-day entrance permit to the site.
The park utilizes Recreation.gov for pre-payment of the entrance pass and suggests printing your pass before arriving at the park or saving them to your phone.
Planning a National Park vacation? America the Beautiful/National Park Pass covers entrance fees for an entire year to all US National Park Sites and over 2,000 Federal Recreation Fee Sites.
The park pass covers everyone in the car for per vehicle sites and for up to 4 adults for per-person sites.
Buy on REI.com and REI will donate 10% of pass proceeds to the National Forest Foundation, National Park Foundation and the U.S. Endowment for Forestry & Communities.
Learn more about National Park Passes for parks that have an entrance fee.
Free Entrance Days -Mark your calendars with the five free entrance days the National Park Service offers annually.
Eastern Time Zone
Pets are allowed on the grounds but must be on a leash and under the owner's control. Owners are responsible for removing pet waste. Except for service animals, they are not permitted in any of the buildings.
Cell service will vary by carrier and area of the park.
The park is open from 9 AM to 4:30 PM. The park is closed during winter from Oct 31-May 29.
There is Public Wi-Fi available in the park.
Insect repellent is always a great idea when outdoors, especially if you are around any body of water.
We use Permethrin Spray on our clothes before our park trips.
Make sure to bring your own water bottle and plenty of water with you. Plastic water bottles are not sold in the park.
There is a nice size parking area near the entrance to the park. It is a small walk to the visitor center.
There is accessible parking closer to the visitor center.
There are no restaurants within the park.
There are no gas stations within the park.
Drones are not permitted within National Park Sites.
National Park Passport Stamps
National Park Passport stamps can be found in the visitor center.
Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site is part of the 1995 Passport Stamp Set.
Electric Vehicle Charging
There are 67 electric vehicle charging stations within a 30 mile radius of Cornish, NH.
Details about Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
Size - 370 acres
Check out how the park compares to other National Parks by Size.
Authorized - August 31, 1964 by Congress.
Established on May 30, 1977
March 12, 2019 - The park was re-designated from a National Historic Site to a National Historical Park.
In 2021, Saint Gaudens NHP had 26,058 park visitors.
In 2020, Saint Gaudens NHP had 13,286 park visitors.
In 2019, Saint Gaudens NHP had 31,759 park visitors.
National Park Address
139 Saint Gaudens Road
Cornish, NH 03745
This is just off of NH Route 12A, 12 miles south of West Lebanon, NH
National Park Map
Map of the Park as illustrated in the brochure.
1. Walkway from parking lot
2. Visitor Center
3. Farragut Monument
4. Picture Gallery
5. Atrium & New Gallery
6. Bowling Green
7. Shaw Memorial
9. Cutting Garden
10. Adams Memorial
11. Formal Garden
12. Little Studio
13. Aspet, the sculptor's home
14. Ravine Studio
15. Ravine Trail
Where is Saint Gaudens National Historical Park?
Saint Gaudens NHP is located in Cornish, New Hampshire.
Estimated distance from major cities nearby
Claremont, NH - 12 miles
Newport. NH - 21 miles
Springfield, MA - 110 miles
Worcester, MA - 118 miles
Albany, NY - 120 miles
Boston, MA - 140 miles
Portland, ME - 178 miles
New York City, NY - 250 miles
Philadelphia, PA - 349 miles
Washington DC - 473 miles
Estimated Distance from nearby National Park
Acadia National Park - 347 miles
Cuyahoga Valley National Park - 599 miles
New River Gorge National Park - 776 miles
Shenandoah National Park - 555 miles
Indiana Dunes National Park - 890 miles
Mammoth Cave National Park - 1,018 miles
Where is the National Park Visitor Center?
There is a short walk/trail from the main parking lot to the visitor center. ADA Parking is available closer to the visitor center. The trail is crushed rock and flat most of the way.
Getting to Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
Claremont Municipal Airport (10 miles)
Burlington International Airport (100 miles)
Albany International Airport (125 miles)
Bradley International Airport (130 miles)
Portsmouth International Airport (130 miles)
Boston Logan International Airport (140 miles)
Rutland Southern Vermont Regional Airport (45 miles)
Manchester-Boston Regional Airport (95 miles)
Eastern Slopes Regional Airport (115 miles)
Beverly Regional Airport (145 miles)
From West Lebanon, NH, (at Exit 20 of Interstate Rt 89) take Route 12A south for about 12 miles, Saint-Gaudens Road will be on the left.
Proceed up Saint-Gaudens Road .5 miles. The parking lot will be on your right.
From Windsor, Vermont, For passenger vehicles, take bridge Street cross the Connecticut River via the covered bridge. Caution: the bridge is closed to RVs, trucks and busses.
At the end of the covered Bridge in New Hampshire, turn left. Saint Gaudens Road will be on you right in one mile.
Best time to visit Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
The best time to visit Saint Gaudens National Historical Park is during the warmer months of the year. From June to September, the weather is generally mild and sunny and the foliage is in full bloom.
Weather and Seasons
The warm season is from May 26 to September 16, with an average daily high temperature above 70 degrees.
The cold season is from December 1 to March 11, with an average daily high temperature below 39 degrees.
The snowiest weather is from October 27 to April 23, when it snows at least 1 inch a month, with the most snowfall occurring in January at 14.2 inches.
Best Things to do in Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
We suggest planning a minimum of a couple of hours to explore the park and wander the grounds.
Saint Gaudens NHP Visitor Center
The visitor center is the best place to start your tour of Saint Gaudens NHS. You can pick up the sticker that shows that you have paid or have a pass to enter the park.
You can also sign up for the ranger-guided tours.
You can pick up some works of art and local Vermont maple syrup at the gift shop.
Watch one of the park films
There are a couple of films offered at the visitor center. We watched the introduction to the life and work of Augustus Saint-Gaudens and it was dry but filled with a ton of info.
Children may have a hard time sitting still for the entire film.
An Introduction to Life and Work of Augustus Saint-Gaudens (18 minutes)
- The park orientation film. Shown throughout the day.
Wax Blood, Bronze Skin (25 minutes) * Shown on request.
Explains "lost wax" bronze casting using film of the 1994 casting of the Park's monument to Admiral Farragut.
The Medal Maker (25 minutes) * Shown on request.
Sculptor, Laura Gardin Fraser, demonstrates the process of medallic art.
Junior Ranger pin depicting the Dianain silhouette, created by Saint-Gaudens in 1892. The Junior Ranger program includes visiting the sculptures found on the property along with some puzzles and matching games.
Take a guided tour
Sculpture and grounds tours are offered every day the park is open at 1 pm. The same program is also offered at 10:30 am on Saturdays depending on staffing.
Fridays and Saturdays additional tours are offered.
Take a self-guided tour
A free app for iPhone and Androids is available for touring the park.
We wandered around the park and it was fantastic. Make sure to look in between the hedges to see more of Saint-Gaudens sculptures.
Tour ASPET home of Augustus and Homer Saint-Gaudens
Self-Guided Tour of ASPET - 10-11: 45 am & 1-4 pm; Subject to staffing availability. Explore the home of Augustus, Augusta, and Homer Saint-Gaudens at your own pace, with staff present to answer questions. Only 12 people are allowed on this tour at a time.
Aspet is not wheelchair accessible.
Hiking in Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
Always carry the 10 essentials for outdoor survival when exploring.
Ravine Trail (¼ mile) meanders along Blow-Me-Up Brook and by the swimming hole constructed by Saint-Gaudens. There is a steep slope at each end of this trail, though the main section is fairly level.
Blow-Me-Down Trail (1-¼ mile round trip) takes one down to the millpond and back along the edge of small ravines left by the receding glacial lakes.
The return Trail section of the Blow-Me-Down Trail (an alternate route back to the lower field) can be steep in sections.
Sycamore Trail - .25 mile spur off of the Blow Me Down Trail leads to a beaver area on Blow Me Down Brook.
How to beat the crowds in Saint Gaudens National Historical Park?
We did not experience any crowds while visiting the park. There is a ton of space to wander the grounds and get away from any crowds.
Where to stay when visiting Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
There are no National Park Lodges within the park.
Nearby Lodging includes:
Holiday Inn Club Vacations Mount Ascutney Resort - A playground, an arcade/game room, and laundry facilities are just a few of the amenities provided at Holiday Inn Club Vacations Mount Ascutney Resort, an IHG Hotel. Adventurous travelers may like the basketball, hiking/biking, and racquetball/squash at this resort. The onsite restaurant, The Maple Kitchen, features American cuisine. A fireplace in the lobby, a bar, and a business center are available to all guests.
Best Western West Lebanon-Hanover Hotel - Free continental breakfast, a garden, and laundry facilities are just a few of the amenities provided at Best Western West Lebanon-Hanover Hotel. Stay connected with free in-room Wi-Fi, with speed of 100+ Mbps (good for 1–2 people or up to 6 devices), and guests can find other amenities such as a fireplace in the lobby and a health club.
The Common Man Inn & Restaurant - Free continental breakfast, a garden, and a fireplace in the lobby are just a few of the amenities provided at The Common Man Inn & Restaurant. For some rest and relaxation, visit the hot tub. Stay connected with free in-room Wi-Fi, and guests can find other amenities such as a bar and a gym.
Fireside Inn & Suites West Lebanon - look forward to a terrace, a garden, and laundry facilities at Fireside Inn & Suites West Lebanon. For some rest and relaxation, visit the hot tub. Be sure to enjoy a meal at Garden Court, the onsite restaurant. Free in-room Wi-Fi is available to all guests, along with a fireplace in the lobby and a bar.
Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites White River Junction - take advantage of a free breakfast buffet, a library, and laundry facilities. Free in-room Wi-Fi is available to all guests, along with a 24-hour gym and a 24-hour business center.
Click on the map below to see additional vacation rentals and lodging near the park.
There are no National Park Campgrounds at the park.
Nearby campgrounds include:
Running Bear Campground - 7 miles
Mount Ascutney State Park Campground - 8 miles
Wilgus State Park - 9 miles
Getaway Mountain Campground - 10 miles
For a fun adventure check out Escape Campervans. These campervans have built in beds, kitchen area with refrigerators, and more. You can have them fully set up with kitchen supplies, bedding, and other fun extras. They are painted with epic designs you can't miss!
Escape Campervans has offices in Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Denver, Chicago, New York, and Orlando
You can learn more with this great book - The Life and Works of Augustus Saint Gaudens
Parks Near Saint Gaudens National Historical Park
Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park (Vermont) - 20 miles
Saratoga National Historical Park (New York) - 103 miles
Martin Van Buren National Historic Site (New York) -136 miles
John F. Kennedy National Historic Site (Massachusetts) - 140 miles
Fort Stanwix National Monument - 220 miles
Check out all of the National Historical Parks managed by the NPS
Check out all of the best things to do in Lincoln, New Hampshire!