Ray Burton, A North Country Icon, Now Has A Museum In His Memory

Aug 23, 2015

The Raymond S. Burton Museum and Learning Center opened in Bath Saturday to honor the man who represented the North Country for more than 30 years, serving as both a Grafton County Commissioner and Executive Council member. He died in 2013 of kidney cancer.

The Raymond S. Burton Legacy Fund and Plymouth State University - including a group of history students - played the major roles in creating the facility,  says Duane Baxter, the chairman of the legacy fund.

“We will be displaying various pages of his life in panels on the wall. We’ll have artifacts from his career including important papers and awards.”

One of those attending Saturday was Gov. Maggie Hassan.

“He fought for the North Country in particular, as you all know, for nearly 40 years, a passion that I think would be hard for any public servant to match.”

“He was more than the executive councilor or county commissioner for the area. This was his family.”

History students from Plymouth State University researched Burton's life and produced a series of informational panels.
Credit Chris Jensen for NHPR

Senator Kelly Ayotte said Burton made a major contribution by helping younger people become involved in public service.

“I think that’s really a true legacy that Ray leaves, of public service to our state, of a whole generation of leaders that learned from the very best public servant in our state.”

“No problem was too small for Ray, no challenge was too big for Ray.”

The museum is located in the Bath Historical Society building on U.S. Route 302 in the town square.

Baxter also said the legacy fund has established two scholarships: one for Plymouth State University and the other for a community college.

Two of Ray Burton's favorite cars were parked outside his museum and learning center.
Credit Chris Jensen for NHPR