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Newburyport is a coastal town, located north of Boston and just south of the Massachusetts–New Hampshire border. It is located on the south bank of the Merrimack river, between the river and the Newbury marshes. Like many other seaports, in the nineteenth century it had a fishing fleet as well as a prosperous shipbuilding industry. Distilleries around the waterfront produced rum from the molasses brought back from the West Indies by local captains. In addition, it was the site of ferries used by the the Portsmouth Flying Stage Coach running between Portsmouth, New Hampshire and Boston.