New HampshireDepartment of JusticeOffice of the Attorney General

News Release

For Immediate Release
August 11, 2015

Thomas J. Donovan, Director of Charitable Trusts (603) 271-1288

Court Issues Final Order to Shut Down Veterans Museum of New Hampshire

Henry T. Pratte Sanctioned

Attorney General Joseph A. Foster announces that the Charitable Trusts Unit has obtained a final court order against a registered New Hampshire charitable organization, Veterans Museum of New Hampshire, and its president, Henry T. Pratte. Following a trial, the Court has now ordered the dissolution of the Museum organization and has ordered Mr. Pratte to pay a $10,000 civil penalty as well as $1,000 in restitution to a veteran who gave money to the Museum. Mr. Pratte is also barred for ten years from involvement with any New Hampshire charitable organization.

In its ruling, the court stated: "[t]he evidence overwhelmingly establishes, as the Director asserts, that since 2009 Pratt has circumvented charitable trust law in his unsuccessful effort to build a veterans Museum in New Hampshire. It also appears that over that six-year period, he repeatedly made false and misleading statements while flouting the law regarding charitable trusts. The false and misleading statements have tricked veterans into parting with their money and their military artifacts and his multiple failures to abide by the statutory requirements for nonprofit organizations have left veterans at risk of further exploitation."

The court's final order comes after six years of efforts to bring the organization into compliance with the law. Among the violations cited by the court, the Museum held itself out as tax exempt even though it never obtained that status from the Internal Revenue Service. It solicited contributions from veterans for three years without registering with the Charitable Trusts Unit. Also, Mr. Pratte falsely represented under oath that certain people served as directors of the Museum when in fact they had resigned.

Attorney General Foster urged members of the public, and especially veterans, to be extremely careful before contributing money or military artifacts to an organization that purports to support veterans' causes. All such organizations must first be registered with the Charitable Trusts Unit. Attorney General Foster recommends that anyone considering making donations ask questions of the solicitor and research the organization on the Internet. The public may also call the Charitable Trusts Unit at 271-3591.

New Hampshire Department of Justice
1 Granite Place South | Concord, NH | 03301
Telephone: 603-271-3658