Maynard House, formerly Upper Valley Hostel, was renamed in honor of Mary Maynard Hitchcock, for whom a local hospital was dedicated. Renaming the organization was in recognition of how she lived her life, which is in harmony with the mission and values of Maynard House.
“A lady of most exemplary character,
who was beloved by all with whom she came in contact, and who during her life devoted more time and thought to the relief of the afflicted...”
Born from a need.
It was 1977. High quality medical care is not always convenient or nearby. It can cause many hardships. The need was born as Doctors and nurses at Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital noticed that some of their out-patients were traveling long distances day in and day out to receive treatment. And families of inpatients were struggling, as well, to stay close during dire times. The hotel and motel options in the area were sparse and not always an affordable option. Some even resorted to sleeping in their cars.
Grown in conversation.
The need was obvious. A Dartmouth Medical School Ethics Forum committee determined that this long distance travel for daily treatments to Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital and the Norris Cotton Cancer Center was causing unnecessary hardships. The word spread and the initial “hostel” began with local area homes opening their hearts and offering extra bed space. The news spread further. Local citizens banded quickly to raise money and a house was rented. On November 27, 1978 the “Upper Valley Hostel” opened its doors at it’s first location, on Sargent Street, with one guest spending two nights at three dollars per night.
Talk of a permanent location prevailed and, in 1980, through the efforts of a committed and vigilant group of citizens, 17 South Street in Hanover, was purchased. Volunteers renovated and prepared the house for occupancy.
Nurtured by love.
Tucked on the corner of a quiet street near Hanover High School, the Maynard House has occupied its graceful, lovingly landscaped 100-year-old home for 36 years through the dedicated work of volunteers and staff. Being off the medical campus yet within walking distance to bus services, restaurants, and in-town amenities offers the guests a quiet and neighborly atmosphere.
"I live a two-hour drive away, so each stay saved a four-hour drive round trip. I would have used a motel or hotel a few times, but they are too expensive to use all the time. No commercial lodging can provide the residential feel and quiet location.”
The need continues to grow. In response to our guests needs, a capital campaign was launched in 2015 and funds were raised for a much needed life safety interior renovation of the kitchen, dining area, additional bedrooms and baths.
It became clear to the Board that renaming and rebranding the “House”, in concert with these renovations, was a necessary step in gaining greater exposure and support to this growing need in the community.
In 2016, the Upper Valley Hostel was renamed The Maynard House in honor of Mary Maynard Hitchcock, wife of Hiram Hitchcock. The choice was obvious and in perfect harmony with the mission and values of “The Hostel” since it’s beginnings. Mary Hitchcock Medical Center, the pillar of the medical community in the Dartmouth Upper Valley Region, was erected by Hiram Hitchcock in 1893 as a lasting memorial to his wife, Mary Maynard Hitchcock. “A lady of most exemplary character, who was beloved by all with whom she came in contact, and who during her life devoted more time and thought to the relief of the afflicted and poor than the world can ever know." Mary Maynard’s love and commitment to the Upper Valley community and those in need remains an inspiration to all involved even 130 years later.