Vaughn's New Hampshire Hideaway



Richard Longtin

A retirement farm for his parents. A quiet get-away from the fast-paced life of an internationally-known entertainer. And More?   Richard Longtin spent over a decade researching the New Hampshire farm purchased by Vaughn and Marian Monroe in 1950. The facts he uncovered will amaze you. Enjoy.

The Story

I will start the story off with an old story line . . . Once upon a time, I started looking for a small farm somewhere in Concord, New Hampshire.  It was said that it might be the home of Ira and Mabelle Monroe. I started this adventure in the year 2002 and I am just telling the ending in 2014.

It took about 60 phone calls and 100 emails which were of no help because I was always getting the wrong information. I finally found a man who said he may know what I was looking for. This man then became the “go to guy” and he gave me the present address of the farm owner. I called this gentleman, his name is Orin Dutton. 

Richard Longtin and Orin Dutton

Mr. Dutton did own the farm but knew very little about The Monroes. I was very willing to tell him all I knew and more. I found Orin to be a great man who was willing to help me with what he knew about the house and farm; starting with the address, which is 131 W. Parrish Road, Concord, NH.

131 W. Parish Road, Concord, NH

The farm was listed on the deed as 145 acres (more or less). It was a large farm house and a cottage, a few barns, and a little pond. To his knowledge, Orin stated that it was not a working farm, no crops or animals, perhaps only a few cats and dogs. The most unique feature of this house was the vast wine cellar.

It became apparent that Vaughn had purchased this house for his parents as a place to go to to rest and avoid the pressures of fame and show business. It was also a home for his Dad, Ira and his Mother, Mabelle to retire and enjoy life. It was just what they all needed. They lived on the farm from 1950 to 1959 until the passing of Vaughn's Mother. The farm was then sold in 1960 and Vaughn's Father moved to Nebraska with his son William until his passing in 1966.

One funny story that happened in the town was, Vaughn had purchased two brand new cars exactly alike for himself and his Dad. When Vaughn was in town, the people did not know if it was his Dad or Vaughn driving the car and they would try to follow to see who it was, hoping to catch a peek at Vaughn.

Once again 2002 to 2014 is a long time to tell a story but a new twist has been added.  I have talked with Orin Dutton and he has just put the farm up for sale . . . so that is the end of my story.

Photo Gallery




Front of House

Back of House

The Real Estate

Vaughn and Marian Monroe purchased the Concord, New Hampshire farm from John D. and Sarah B. Kennedy, husband and wife, on May 26, 1950 for a sum of $9,000.

Ten years later, on June 16, 1960, Vaughn and Marian Monroe sold the farm for $12,000 to Alfred S. and Trudy A. Gielar.

Fifty-three years later (2013), the property (now 115 acres) was assessed at $899,300. At the rate of inflation, the $12,000 sale price in 1960 would equate to $96,110 in 2014 or a cumulative rate of inflation of 700%. The present market price of the farm is almost ten times greater than the 1960 sale price adjusted to today's dollars!

Orin Dutton purchased the property in 1984 for an undisclosed sum. Thirty years later, the farm is on the market again.

The Real Estate sheet reads like this:

This charming antique Cape built in 1812 sits on 115 acres. This is your chance to own your private piece of paradise. (This property has it all) 5 Bedrms, 2.5 Baths, Living Rm, Dining Rm, Office, Den, soft wood floors, 3-Season Porch, 2 Car Attached Garage, Guest Cottage or In-Law, Master Bedrm has M. Bath, Woodstove & Walk-in closet. EQUESTRIAN FACILITY 30 X 20 Nine-stall Barn, Shed, Pond, Brook, Fields, Pasture. GORGEOUS VIEWS. DEVELOPERS TAKE NOTICE **CONCEPTUAL 4 LOTS SUBDIVISION OFF ROAD FRONTAGE** POSSIBILITY OF LARGER SUBDIVISION

Location, location, location . . . Just up the road from Boston and West Newton, Massachusetts.

Yet tucked away in the forests and rolling hills just south of the White Mountains.

More History

The following is from a historical piece entitled Recollections of West Concord, copyright 1976, generated for the country's Bicentennial:

The Augustine Carter Homestead

Augustine Carter, a grandson of Squire Carter, acquired property of his own on West Parish Road, after living for many years in the old family homestead. The property, located almost at the end of West Parish Road near the Carter Brook, had two notable previous owners - Henry Martin who was famous for his land sales, and the Dow family. Ebenezer Dow, the family patriarch, had an impressive military career. He fought with the Rangers in several major battles - Ticonderoga, Crown Point, Louisburg, and the surrender of Quebec. He fought in the Revolutionary battles at Lexington and Bunker Hill, and was part of Arnold's trek again to Quebec.

The Carter homestead, now owned by John and Georgia Pendleton, still stands to the south of the road and the east of the brook (sometimes called Mill Brook). In this century it has been owned by the parents of Vaughn Monroe, a noted singer of the American band period. The Dow homestead stood north of the road and west of the brook.

This simple New England cape sits some 200 feet southerly of West Parish Road opposite the old mill site now owned by the White Mountain Coon Hunters Association. The Amsden History of Concord refers to it as the "Augustine Carter Homestead." In fact, Augustine Carter was its owner from the time he acquired it, together with 128 acres, for $3,850 in 1869 until his death in 1906. However, in all likelihood Carter was not its original owner.

Twenty years earlier, in 1849, Timothy Colby who then lived in Hopkinton, conveyed a one-half interest in the same property to his son, William Davis Colby for "love and affection." The deed recites the property as being "the same on which said William Davis Colby now lives." William acquired the other one-half interest upon his father's death in 1866. The 1858 Merrimack County map shows William D. Colby as its owner.

The history of the homestead prior to 1849 is not as clear as its subsequent history. We know that Timothy Colby acquired the 128-acre tract from Henry Martin, together with a 21 acre lot on the Hopkinton line, in 1845 for $2,015. We also know that the home appears to have been constructed during the Federal period, which is generally considered to have ended in 1825, and that "word of mouth" puts its construction in 1812. However, we have no other evidence that the home existing prior to 1849.

Martin acquired 61 acres of the 128-acre tract from moody Dow for $700 in 1822. This deed makes no reference to any buildings on the property (which is not entirely unusual in those times). This 61-acre parcel was probably part of the Ebenezer Dow homestead consisting of the 80-acre lot (No. 69) laid out to the original right of David Dodge and a rather large home, the cellar hole and foundation of which still remain just north of West Parish Road, west of Mill Brook. Although Ebenezer, who was a veteran of the Revolutionary War lived there with his son Moody until the former's death in 1817, the conveyance of the homestead occurred in 1794 (sic). Moody's subsequent decision to join the Shaker colony in Canterbury no doubt contributed to his decision to convey the 61-acre parcel to Martin.

The search for the deed conveying the balance of the 128-acre parcel to Martin has been more challenging and has involved the Merrimack County Registry of Deeds back to its starting point in 1823 and the Rockingham County Registry of Deeds (Concord was a part of Rockingham County prior to 1823) back to 1790, with no conclusive results. The search continues, and at this point we still lack conclusive evidence of the date when the Augustine Carter homestead was built.


Submitted by: Richard & Patricia Longtin