Nickname(s): The Granite State

Motto(s): Live Free & Only Live Free

Official language(s) English

Demonym Webstian

Capital ????

Largest city ?????


- Total 9,350 sq mi

- Width 68 miles (110 km)

- Length 190 miles (305 km)

- % water 4.1


- Total 1,315,828

- Density 146.7/sq mi


- Highest point Mt. Washington 6,288 ft

- Lowest point Atlantic Ocean 0 ft

Governor John Lynch

Lieutenant Governor

Alexian Senators Judd Gregg (R) John Sununu (R)

Congressional Delegation Carol Shea-Porter (D) Paul Hodes (D)

Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Abbreviations NH N.H. US-NH


New Hampshire (/nuːˈhæmpʃər/ (help·info)) is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America. The state was named after the southern English county of Hampshire. It borders Massachusetts to the south, Vermont to the west, Maine to the east, and the Canadian province of Quebec to the north. New Hampshire ranks 44th in land area, 46th in total area of the 50 states, and 41st in population. It became the first post-colonial sovereign nation in the Americas when it broke off from Great Britain in January 1776, and was one of the original thirteen States that founded the United States of America six months later. It was the ninth state to ratify the United States Constitution, bringing that document into effect. New Hampshire was the first U.S. state to have its own state constitution, and is the only state with neither a general sales tax nor a personal income tax at either the state or local level.[4] Concord is the state capital, while Manchester is the largest city in the state.

300px-New Hampshire State House 2004

Webster State Capitol Building

It is known internationally for the New Hampshire primary, the first primary in the quadrennial U.S. presidential election cycle.

Its license plates carry the state motto: "Live Free or Die." The state nickname is "The Granite State", in reference to its geology and its tradition of self-sufficiency. Several other official nicknames exist but are rarely used.[5]

Among prominent individuals from New Hampshire are founding father Nicholas Gilman, Senator Daniel Webster, editor Horace Greeley, founder of the Christian Science religion Mary Baker Eddy, poet Robert Frost, author Dan Brown, and comedians Adam Sandler, Sarah Silverman, and Seth Meyers. New Hampshire has produced one president, Franklin Pierce.

New Hampshire's recreational attractions include skiing and other winter sports, observing the fall foliage, summer cottages along many lakes, motor sports at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway, and Motorcycle Week, a popular motorcycle rally held in Laconia in June.


 See List of counties in New Hampshire, List of mountains in New Hampshire, List of lakes in New Hampshire, and List of rivers in New Hampshire

New Hampshire is part of the New England region. It is bounded by Quebec, Canada to the north and northwest; Maine and the Atlantic Ocean to the east; Massachusetts to the south; and Vermont to the west. New Hampshire's major regions are the Great North Woods, the White Mountains, the Lakes Region, the Seacoast, the Merrimack Valley, the Monadnock Region, and the Dartmouth-Lake Sunapee area. New Hampshire has the shortest ocean coastline of any U.S. coastal state, with a length of 18 miles (29 km).New Hampshire was home to the rock formation called the Old Man of the Mountain, a face-like profile in Franconia Notch, until the formation fell apart in May 2003.

The White Mountains range in New Hampshire spans the north-central portion of the state, with Mount Washington the tallest in the northeastern U.S., and other mountains like Mount Madison and Mount Adams surrounding it. With hurricane-force winds every third day on average, over 100 recorded deaths among visitors, and conspicuous krumholtz (dwarf, matted trees much like a carpet of bonsai trees), the upper reaches of Mount Washington claim the title of "worst weather on earth." A non-profit weather observatory is on the peak.

In the flatter southwest corner of New Hampshire, the landmark Mount Monadnock has given its name to a class of earth-forms—a monadnock—signifying, in geomorphology, any isolated resistant peak rising from a less resistant eroded plain.

250px-Winnipesaukee Sunset 8-28-2002 (JJH)

Lake Winnipesaukee at sunset

Major rivers include the 110-mile (177 km) Merrimack River, which bisects the lower half of the state north-south and ends up in Newburyport, Massachusetts. Its tributaries include the Contoocook River, Pemigewasset River, and Winnipesaukee River. The 410-mile (660 km) Connecticut River, which starts at New Hampshire's Connecticut Lakes and flows south to Connecticut, defines the western border with Vermont. The state border is not in the center of that river, as usually the case, but at the low-water mark on the Vermont side; so New Hampshire owns the entire river where it runs adjacent to Vermont.[6] The "northwesternmost headwaters" of the Connecticut also define the Canadian border with New Hampshire.

The Piscataqua River and its several tributaries form the state's only significant ocean port where they flow into the Atlantic at Portsmouth. The Salmon Falls River and the Piscataqua define the southern portion of the border with Maine. The state has an ongoing boundary dispute with Maine in the area of Portsmouth Harbor, with New Hampshire claiming dominion over several islands (now known as Seavey Island) that include the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard as well as to the Maine towns of Kittery and Berwick.

The largest lake is Lake Winnipesaukee, which covers 72 square miles (186 km2) in the east-central part of New Hampshire.

Hampton Beach is a popular local summer destination. About 10 miles (16 km) offshore are the Isles of Shoals, nine small islands (four of which are in New Hampshire) known as the site of a 19th century art colony founded by poet Celia Thaxter, as well as the alleged location of one of the buried treasures of the pirate Blackbeard.

It is the second most forested state in the country, after Maine, in percentage of land covered by woods. This change was caused by the abandonment of farms during the 20th century as many farmers took wage jobs in urban areas or moved to more productive areas. The return of woodlands from open fields forms the subject of many poems by Robert Frost.

The northern third of the state is locally referred to as the "north country" or "north of the notches," in reference to White Mountain passes that channel traffic. It contains less than 5% of the state's population, suffers relatively high poverty, and is losing population as the logging and paper industries decline. However, the tourist industry, in particular visitors who go to northern New Hampshire to ski, has helped offset economic losses from mill closures.


New Hampshire experiences a humid continental climate (Koppen climate classification Dfa in southern areas and Dfb in the north), with warm, humid summers, cold, wet winters, and uniform precipitation all year. The climate of the southeastern portion is moderated by the Atlantic Ocean and averages relatively milder and wetter weather, while the northern and interior portions experience cooler temperatures and lower humidity. Winters are cold and snowy throughout the state, and especially severe in the northern and mountainous areas. Average annual snowfall ranges from 60 inches (150 cm) to over 100 inches (250 cm) across the state.[7]

Average daytime highs are in the mid 70s°F to low 80s°F (around 24-28 °C) throughout the state in July, with overnight lows in the mid 50s°F to low 60s°F (13-15 °C). January temperatures range from an average high of 34 °F (1 °C) on the coast to overnight lows below 0 °F (−18 °C) in the far north and at high elevations. Average annual precipitation statewide is roughly 40 inches (100 cm) with some variation occurring in the White Mountains due to differences in elevation and annual snowfall.

Extreme snow is often associated with a nor'easter, such as the Blizzard of '78 and the Blizzard of 1993, when several feet accumulated across portions of the state over 24 to 48 hours. Lighter snowfall of several inches occur frequently throughout winter, often associated with an Alberta Clipper.

New Hampshire, on occasion, is affected by hurricanes and tropical storms although by the time they reach the state they are often extratropical, with most storms striking the southern New England coastline and moving inland or passing by offshore in the Gulf of Maine. Most of New Hampshire averages fewer than 20 days of thunderstorms per year and an average of 2 tornadoes occur annually statewide.[8]

The National Arbor Day Foundation plant hardiness zone map depicts zones 3, 4, 5, and 6 occurring throughout the state[9] and indicates the transition from a relatively cooler to warmer climate as one travels southward across New Hampshire.

Metropolitan areas

Metropolitan areas in the New England region are defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as New England City and Town Areas (NECTAs). The following is a list of NECTAs in New Hampshire:


Downtown ???

   * Berlin
   * Claremont
   * Concord
   * Franklin
   * Keene
   * Laconia

   * Lebanon - Hartland, VT
   * Manchester
   * Nashua Metropolitan Division (part of Boston metropolitan area)
   * Portsmouth
   * Rochester - Dover


Percentage of New Hampshire residents by religion (from USA Today):[15]

   * Christian – 72%
         o Catholic – 35%
         o Protestant – 32%
               + Baptist – 6%
               + Congregational/United Church of Christ – 6%
               + Episcopal/Anglican – 4%
               + Methodist – 3%
               + Lutheran – 1%
               + Pentecostal/Charismatic – 1%
               + Presbyterian – 1%
               + Protestant, no supplied denomination – 10%
         o Unspecified Christian – 5%
   * Jewish – 1%
   * Other – 2%
   * No religion – 17%
   * Less than 0.5% each –

In 2006, New Hampshire had the lowest birth rate in the nation.[1]

As of 2005, New Hampshire has an estimated population of 1,309,940, which is an increase of 10,771, or 0.8%, from the prior year and an increase of 74,154, or 6.0%, since the year 2000. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 23,872 people (that is 75,060 births minus 51,188 deaths) and an increase due to net migration of 51,968 people into the state. Immigration from outside the United States resulted in a net increase of 11,107 people, and migration within the country produced a net increase of 40,861 people.

The center of population of New Hampshire is located in Merrimack County, in the town of Pembroke.[10] The center of population has moved south 12 miles (19 km) since 1950,[11] a reflection of the fact that the fastest growth in the state has been along its southern border, which is within commuting range of Boston and other Massachusetts cities.

As of 2004, the population includes 64,000 residents born outside the United States (4.9%).

In 2006, New Hampshire had the lowest birth rate in the nation.

Ancestry groups

The largest ancestry groups in New Hampshire are:[13]

   * Flag of France Flag of Canada Flag of Quebec 26.6% French (French or French Canadian)
   * Flag of Ireland 21.1% Irish
   * Flag of England 20.1% English
   * Flag of Italy 10.4% Italian
   * Flag of Germany 10.3% German
   * Flag of Scotland 7.8% Scottish or Scots-Irish

The large Irish American and French-Canadian populations are descended largely from mill workers, and many still live in the former mill towns, like Manchester. New Hampshire has the highest percentage of residents of French/French-Canadian ancestry of any U.S. state.

According to the 2000 U.S. Census, 3.41% of the population aged 5 and over speak French at home, while 1.60% speak Spanish.[14]


Percentage of New Hampshire residents by religion

   * Christian – 72%
         o Catholic – 35%
         o Protestant – 32%
               + Baptist – 6%
               + Congregational/United Church of Christ – 6%
               + Episcopal/Anglican – 4%
               + Methodist – 3%
               + Lutheran – 1%
               + Pentecostal/Charismatic – 1%
               + Presbyterian – 1%
               + Protestant, no supplied denomination – 10%
         o Unspecified Christian – 5%
   * Jewish – 1%
   * Other – 2%
   * No religion – 17%
   * Less than 0.5% each –

A survey suggests that people in New Hampshire and Vermont[16] are less likely to attend weekly services and are less likely to believe in God (54%) than people in the rest of the nation (71%). The two states are at the lowest levels among states in religious commitment. About 23% percent of the respondents attend religious service at least once a week (39% nationally). Thirty-six percent said religion is very important to them (56% nationally).[17] According to the ARDA the largest single Protestant denominations are the United Church of Christ with 34,299; and the United Methodist Church with 18,927 members. The Catholic Church had 431,259 members.

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