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New Hampshire State Guide

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New Hampshire is a state in the New England region of the northeastern US. The state is bordered to the south by Massachusetts, to the west by Vermont, to the east by Maine and the Atlantic Ocean and to the north by the Canadian province of Quebec. New Hampshire is the 5th smallest and the 9th least populous US states. The state capital is located at Concord while Manchester is the largest city. New Hampshire became the 9th state of US on June 21, 1788 [1].

New Hampshire Fast Facts:

  • Capital: Concord
  • Largest city: Manchester
  • Major Cities: Manchester, Nashua, Concord, Derry
  • State Tree: White birch
  • State Bird: Purple finch
  • State Flower: Purple lilac
  • State Fruit: Pumpkin
  • State Animal: White tailed deer
  • State Amphibian: Red-spotted newt
  • State Gem: Smokey Quartz
  • State Rock: Granite
  • State Mineral: Beryl

History of New Hampshire

The state of New Hampshire was populated by Native American tribes for thousands of years before being settled by Sealthe British. In 1623 under the authority of an Englishman people were sent to establish fishing colony in New Hampshire. In 1679 England formed New Hampshire as a separate royal colony and named it after Hampshire, England. Later James the first began a colonization project here which provided ships and provisions and free land. Dover and Portsmouth stretched into Hampton and Exeter. A community of towns was erected which became a royal province in 1679. During this time New Hampshire was administered by eight lieutenant governors. Under King George II New Hampshire returned to its provincial status with a governor of its own, Benning Wentworth. In 1775 New Hampshire became the first state to declare its independence from England. On June 21, 1788, New Hampshire was the 9th state to ratify the constitution of the United States with which the Constitution officially went into effect.

New Hampshire was one of the Thirteen Colonies that revolted with the British rule in the American Revolution. In the 1830s, the state witnessed major news story such as the establishment of the Republic of Indian Stream and Dartmouth College's Abolitionists created the experimental, interracial Noyes Academy in Canaan. New Hampshire took part in the Civil War period from 1861–1865.

New Hampshire attracted many immigrants between 1884 and 1903 among which French Canadian migration and Polish immigration was significant. As the decades followed down to the present time many events occurred in the history of New Hampshire. American President Franklin Pierce, and Vice-president Henry Wilson were elected both from New Hampshire. The first American public library was established at Peterborough. The postwar years saw the rise of New Hampshire's political primary for President of the United States.

New Hampshire History Timeline:

  • 1623: Dover settlement founded

  • 1645: First recorded slave in Portsmouth

  • 1691: New Hampshire permanently separated from Massachusetts

  • 1717: John Wentworth became the lieutenant governor of New Hampshire

  • 1734: Religious revival, Great Awakening, swept through New Hampshire

  • 1774: New Hampshire first state to declare independence from England

  • 1778: New Hampshire first state to hold constitutional convention

  • 1788: New Hampshire became 9th U. S. state

  • 1808: State capitol established in Concord

  • 1905: Treaty of Portsmouth signed in Portsmouth, ending Russo-Japanese War

  • 1916: New Hampshire held its first primary

  • 1961: Alan Shepard, New Hampshire native, became first American in space

  • 2003: Old Man of the Mountain, Rocky icon, collapsed

  • 2007: New Hampshire first state to recognize same-sex unions

Geography of New Hampshire

New Hampshire is located in northeastern United States. The state is bordered to the south by Massachusetts, to the west by Vermont, to the east by Maine and the Atlantic Ocean and to the north by the Canadian province of Quebec. The total area of the state is 24,097 sq km of which 23,380 sq km is land and 717 sq km is inland water [2]. The geographic center of New Hampshire lies in Belknap county, 5 km east of the town of Ashland. It is one of the six New England states.

The state is also known as the "Mother of Rivers" as five of the great streams of New England originate in its granite hills. The Connecticut River rises in the north, the Cocheco and Salmon Falls rivers meet at Dover to form the Piscataqua River, the Pemigewasset River starts in the Profile Lake in the Franconia mountains and joins the Winnipesaukee at Franklin to form the Merrimack River and the Maine's two principal rivers, the Saco and the Androscoggin, start in northern New Hampshire. New Hampshire has 1300 lakes or ponds and about 40 rivers with a total milage of about 41,800 miles.

New Hampshire Geography Fast Facts

  • Total area: 24,097 sq km
  • Latitude: 42o 42′ N to 45o 18′ N
  • Longitude: 70o 36′ W to 72o 33′ W
  • Highest point: Mount Washington at 6,288 feet
  • Lowest point: Sea level
  • Approximate mean elevation: 305 m
  • Major rivers: Connecticut, Pemigewasset River, Merrimack, Androscoggin, Saco
  • Major lakes: Winnepesaukee, Newfound, Squam

Topography of New Hampshire

New Hampshire features rugged mountains, clear blue lakes, and sandy lake and ocean beaches. The three primary geological features and landforms of New Hampshire are--the Coastal Lowlands, the White Mountain Region and the Eastern New England Upland.

The Coastal Lowlands: In the Coastal Lowlands the state borders the Atlantic Ocean. The Coastal Lowlands extend from 15 to 20 miles into New Hampshire. The region is characterized by sandy beaches, many rivers and tidal wetlands. The Great Bay is part of the Coastal Lowlands.

The White Mountains: The White Mountains cover the northern portion of New Hampshire and comprises rugged mountains, narrow valleys and heavily forested hills. Mount Washington, the highest point in New Hampshire and the highest point in New England, is part of the Presidential Range.

The Eastern New England Upland: The Eastern New England Upland comprises the southern region of the state that extends from northern Maine south to eastern Connecticut. This region is divided in three areas-- the Merrimack Valley, the Connecticut River Valley and the Hills and Lakes Region.

New Hampshire Mountains

There are many mountain ranges in New Hampshire. Mount Washington is the highest mountain peak followed by the summits of Mount Adams and Mount Jefferson. The other major mountain peaks in the state are:

  • Mount Lincoln
  • Mount Clay
  • Mount Franklin
  • South Twin Mountain
  • Mount Hancock
  • Mount Eisenhower
  • Mount Flume
  • Mount Kelsey
  • Mount Willey

Climate of New Hampshire

With wide variations in daily and seasonal temperatures, New Hampshire has a changeable climate. The variations are affected by proximity to the ocean, lakes, mountains and rivers. New Hampshire enjoys all four seasons. The summer seasons are warm, humid and short while winters are cold, long and snowy with uniform precipitation all year. The average annual snowfall ranges from 60 inches to over 100 inches. New Hampshire is prone to snow storms and blizzards, with hurricanes occurring sometimes.

Forests in New Hampshire

The Division of Forests and Lands is steward of New Hampshire's forests and related resources. The department forestprotects and promotes the values provided by trees and forests. The mission of the department is to manage the State's forested resources, provide forest resource information and education to the people and protect the resources for the continuing benefit of the State. The state forests are properties associated with undeveloped forest land managed for many uses including public access for forest-based recreation, demonstrations of sound forestry practices, preservation of historic resources and rural culture, protection of threatened and endangered species, and conservation of biological diversity.

Contact Details
Division of Forests and Lands
PO Box 1856
Concord, New Hampshire 03302-1856
Phone: (603) 271-2214
Fax: (603) 271-6488
Website: https://www.nhdfl.org/

For list of New Hampshire forests click here

For forest safety program click here

Hunting & Fishing on State-owned Lands click here

New Hampshire Flora and Fauna

The state of New Hampshire is heavily forested with an abundance of maple, oak, elm, hemlock, beech, pine and fir trees. The Mount Washington features rare alpine plants such as Labrador tea, Greenland sandwort, alpine bearberry, dwarf birch and dwarf cinquefoil, willow and balsam fir. The native New Hampshire mammals are muskrat, the white-tailed deer, porcupine, beaver and snowshoe hare. Among the threatened animals are arctic tern, the pine marten, purple martin, whip-por-will, peregrine falcon, and osprey. The State's endangered species list includes karner blue butterfly, bald eagle, lynx, short nose sturgeon, Atlantic salmon, Sunapee trout and dwarf wedge mussel.

Demographics of New Hampshire

New Hampshire had an estimated population of 1,326,813 as of 2014 estimation by the U.S Census Bureau which reflected an increase of 0.79% since the 2010 US Census. The center of population of New Hampshire is situated in Merrimack County. Some of the major ancestral groups in New Hampshire include French, Irish, English, German, American, Polish and Scottish.

Major racial ethnic groups in New Hampshire

  • White alone: 94.2%
  • Black or African American: 1.5%
  • Asian: 2.4%
  • American Indian and Alaska Native: 0.3%
  • Two or More Races: 1.6%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 3.2%
  • White alone, not Hispanic or Latino: 91.6%

New Hampshire Population Quick Facts [3]

  • Population, 2014: 1,326,813 
  • Population, 2013: 1,322,616
  • Population, percent change, April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014: 0.8%
  • Persons under 5 years, percent, 2013: 5.0%
  • Persons under 18 years, percent, 2013: 20.5%
  • Persons 65 years and over, percent, 2013: 15.4%
  • Female persons, percent, 2013: 50.6%

Economy of New Hampshire

The economy of New Hampshire is supported by agriculture, industries and the service sector. As regards to employment in New Hampshire, in January 2015, 713.3 people were employed in New Hampshire while 29.4 remained unemployed and the unemployment rate was 4.0% [4].

Economy Fast Facts:

Gross domestic product (GDP) in millions of current dollars (2013) [5]

  • All industry total: $67,848
  • Private industries: $59,708
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting: $224
  • Mining: $124
  • Manufacturing: $7,713
  • Finance, insurance, real estate, rental, and leasing: $15,384
  • Private services-providing industries: $49,214

Agriculture in New Hampshire

  • The chief commercial crops in New Hampshire are greenhouse and nursery products, sweet corn, Christmas trees, apples and chicken eggs.
  • Hay is the chief field crop grown to feed livestock.
  • Dairy products account for nearly 1/3 of the state’s total farm income.
  • Maple trees are tapped to produce maple syrup and sugar.
  • Forest products are also produced in New Hampshire.
  • Livestock raised includes beef cattle and hogs, Chicken, cattle and calves and turkeys.

Industries in New Hampshire

  • New Hampshire’s top industries include the manufacturing of electrical, light metal, and computer and technology products.
  • New Hampshire's leading mined products are sand and gravel for roads and concrete.
  • Finance, insurance and real estate industry are leading service industries in New Hampshire. Every year tourism brings in billions of dollars to the state.
  • Community, business and personal services sector spurred by private health care, law firms, vacation resorts and repair shops, wholesale and retail and trade sector are other top service industries in the state.

Tourism in New Hampshire

Tourism also plays a predominant role in the economy of New Hampshire. Tourism and its related industries serve as one of the largest employers of the state. Some of the major tourist attractions in New Hampshire include:

Mt. Monadnock

Hampton Beach

Lake Winnipesaukee

Kancamagus Highway

Currier Museum of Art

Santa's Village

Franconia Notch State Park

Mount Washington Auto Road

Diana's Baths

Education in New Hampshire

The New Hampshire Department of Education helps meet the educational needs of each student in the state. The educationmission of the department is to provide educational leadership and services promoting equal educational opportunities and quality practices and programs to enable the residents to become fully productive members of society. A wide variety of programs and services are offered by the department in support of New Hampshire's students, educators, teachers, administrators, and community members. The higher educational opportunities in New Hampshire are vast. Schools, colleges and universities are located throughout the state. Listed below are the important colleges and universities in New Hampshire:

University of New Hampshire, Durham

University of New Hampshire, Manchester

Keene State College

Plymouth State University

Granite State College, Concord

Antioch University New England, Keene

Franklin Pierce University

Lesley University

Southern New Hampshire University

Colby-Sawyer College

Rivier University

Government of New Hampshire

The Constitution of New Hampshire is the guardian of the Government of New Hampshire as the government is Senatestructured and established by the State Constitution of New Hampshire. New Hampshire became the 9th state of US on June 21, 1788. The State Constitution of New Hampshire divides the powers of the government into three distinct branches— the legislative, the executive and the judicial.

The New Hampshire Executive Branch is a well functioning body of the state government. The Executive Branch includes the Governor, Executive Councilors and State Agencies. Several state government departments work under the executive branch for the smooth functioning of the government. The Governor of New Hampshire leads the executive branch of the government as the supreme executive head.

The Legislative Branch is also known as the General Court of New Hampshire and is composed of the senate and the House of Representatives, each of which shall have a negative on the other. With 400 Representatives and 24 Senators, the General Court of New Hampshire is the second largest legislature in the United States following the U.S. Congress.

The Judicial Branch of New Hampshire comprises of the Supreme Court and other courts. The Supreme Court is the highest and final court in the state. The Judges are nominated by the Governor and appointed by Governor and Council and serve until the age of 70.

Read more on New Hampshire Government

Transportation in New Hampshire

The New Hampshire Department of Transportation provides safe and secure mobility and travel options for the transportresidents of the state. The department aims at providing interstate and intrastate service to residents, visitors, and goods movement through transportation system and services that are well maintained, reliable and efficient. The department strives to achieve transportation excellence in New Hampshire. The department develops plans and programs relating to the system of highways, roads, bridges, railways and airways in New Hampshire.

The road transport in New Hampshire comprises of highways, state routes, public transit and bicycle and pedestrian routes. The New Hampshire transport department is committed to provide convenient, safe and reliable road transportation in the state and also to provide easy connectivity to various cities and states.

The Rail Division is responsible to ensure a safe, efficient and reliable rail transportation system in New Hampshire. It looks after railroads, both passenger and freight. There are 459 miles of active railroad in New Hampshire. With over 200 miles of active line, the state is the largest railroad owner. Nine freight railroads operate in the state.

The New Hampshire Department of Transportation's Bureau of Aeronautics preserves and promotes a system of airports for best possible air transportation in New Hampshire. The department plans, constructs and maintains the transportation system and state facilities in the most efficient and economical manner. The Bureau of Aeronautics is dedicated to the promotion of New Hampshire Airports.

Water Transportation plays a major role in the transportation system of New Hampshire. It serves the people as a mode of tourist transportation and a major mode for freight movement across the state.

Read more on New Hampshire Transportation

New Hampshire Healthcare

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services is responsible for the health, safety and well being of healthcarethe people of the state of New Hampshire. For the health benefits of the people the department administers services and programs such as mental health, substance abuse, developmental disability and public health. The mission of the department includes meeting the health needs of New Hampshire citizens, providing treatment and support services to those who have unique needs and to protect and care for the most vulnerable citizens of New Hampshire.

Hospitals in New Hampshire provide quality health care to the citizens of the state. New Hampshire hospitals provide emergency, inpatient, outpatient care and diagnostic every day. The hospitals in New Hampshire are well equipped with state of art technology and provide committed services to the patients. The topmost hospitals in New Hampshire known for giving outstanding services to the people of the state include Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, St. Joseph Hospital, Catholic Medical Center, Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital, Androscoggin Valley Hospital, Cheshire Medical Center among others.

Read more on New Hampshire Healthcare

Interesting Facts about New Hampshire

  • New Hampshire has 4 nicknames--Granite State, Mother of Rivers, White Mountain State and Switzerland of America.

  • New Hampshire is one of only nine states that do not require its residents to pay state income tax.

  • The state motto of New Hampshire is Live Free or Die.

  • The State Tartan was adopted in 1995.

  • The State Sport was adopted in 1998.

  • The State Insect is Ladybug


  1. New Hampshire Statehood
  2. New Hampshire Area
  3. New Hampshire Population
  4. New Hampshire Employment
  5. New Hampshire Economy
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