Back River

The early settlers named the tidal portion of the river located at the west side of Dover Neck, Back River, above which, to the north, they called “Bellamy’s Bank river or freshet.” (The name “freshet” was given to the fresh portion of a stream to distinguish it from the tidal part towards the mouth, which is salt.)

On September 20, 1647, Joseph Miller conveyed to John Goddard 20 acres on the west side of “Back River.”

Historically, the name “Back River” was never retained and at some point…changed by “some very ignorant persons” to “Bellamy River,” not knowing that name belonged only to the fresh water portion of the river, which ends at the Sawyer lower mill.
Source: Remembering Old Dover NH Facebook Group

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