- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 25, 2015

SOMERSWORTH, N.H. (AP) - The Hilltop School in Somersworth has been named to the National Register of Historic Places.

Its predecessor was Great Falls High School. It was the first public high school in New Hampshire constructed in 1849 after a law - called the Somersworth Act of 1848 - that cleared the way for municipalities to develop centralized school districts, create systems of graded schools, buy lots for them and build schools.

By the 1920s, that building was in disrepair. The school board secured funding for a new school.

Somersworth High School was built on the site of the old school in 1927, where students could learn bookkeeping, typing, physics and chemistry in addition to general studies. The school was expanded in 1939 to include a biology room.

When a new high school was built in 1956, the building became Hilltop Elementary School. It closed in 2007, and the community is looking at possibilities for new uses for the property.

The Georgian Revival-style school has many of its original features, including coat closets, gas light fixtures near the exit doors and brick-lined niches for the water fountains.

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