American Independence Festival

EXETER —On Sat., July 13, thousands will descend upon downtown Exeter, former capital of the Granite State during the Revolutionary War, for the 29th annual American Independence Festival.

Celebrating the arrival of an original copy of the Declaration of Independence in town on July 16, 1776, the festival features a variety of entertainment, including music, battle re-enactment, tradition artisan working village and more.

One of the festival’s most unique highlights, however, is within the museum’s Ladd-Gilman House, which will feature one of the few remaining copies of the Declaration of Independence. Its arrival in Exeter is recreated at 11:00 a.m. with a horseback delivery of the document that is then read by Greg Gilman. He is the direct descendant of John Taylor Gilman, who read the Declaration of Independence to the townspeople of Exeter on July 16, 1776.

Other highlights of the festival include colonial-inspired beer brewed by Cisco in Folsom Tavern from 12:00-6:00 p.m., a craft and art fair and local food.

Tickets for the festival, which takes place from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 pm, are $10.00 for adults, $5.00 for ages 6-18, and free for children under age 6, and museum members. Free admission is also available to active/retired military, veterans, and their immediate families. All proceeds benefit the American Independence Museum and support future festivals.

To purchase tickets, or learn more about the museum, visit

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