The New International Encyclopædia/New Hampshire

NEW HAMP′SHIRE (popularly called the ‘Granite State’). A North Atlantic State of the United States, belonging to the New England group. It lies between latitudes 42° 40′ and 45° 18′ N., and between longitudes 70° 37′ and 72° 37′ W. It is bounded on the north by the Canadian Province of Quebec, on the east by the State of Maine and for a distance of 18 miles by the Atlantic Ocean, on the south by Massachusetts, and on the west by Vermont, from which it is separated by the Connecticut River. Its general shape is that of a right triangle with the right angle at the southeastern corner and the acuter apex pointing north. Its extreme length is 178 miles, its extreme width 88 miles, and its area 9305 square miles, of which 9005 square miles, or 5,763,200 acres are land surface. It ranks fortieth in size among the United States.

Topography. New Hampshire is relatively more rough and mountainous than the average State on the Atlantic slope. The easternmost extension of the Appalachian system traverses the State lengthwise, running first as a ridge along the western boundary on the east bank of the Connecticut River, and culminating in the rugged mass of monadnocks known as the White Mountains. These cover about 1300 square miles in the north-central part of the State, and constitute a region of romantic scenery. Among the peaks, whose naked, rocky summits reach above the timber-line, the highest is Mount Washington, with an altitude of 6293 feet. Several isolated monadnocks, outlying members of the group, are scattered over the southwestern quarter of the State, the most prominent being Mount Kearsarge, 2943 feet high, and Mount Monadnock, with an altitude of 3186 feet. North of the White Mountains, in Coos County, another elevation rises to a height of over 2000 feet, and extends indefinitely into Maine and Canada. The southeastern part of the State is generally low, being relieved by numerous ‘drumlins’—rounded hills of glacial drift generally covered with boulders. Every part of the State is well drained by numerous streams, the narrow western portion by the Connecticut River, the remainder by rivers flowing to the Atlantic Ocean. The northern part of the State is drained by the Androscoggin River, which issues from Lake Umbagog, and after making an irregular detour to the west flows into Maine. The Saco also enters that State after draining the eastern group of the White Mountains. The principal river of the State after the Connecticut is the Merrimac, whose main fork, the Pemigewasset, rises in the Franconia or western group of the White Mountains. It flows southward in a series of falls and rapids, furnishing enormous water power. It has been said that the Merrimac turns more spindles than any other river in the world. The lower course of this river is in Massachusetts. Finally, the southeastern corner of the State is drained by the streams flowing into the Piscataqua estuary, this being the only harbor on the coast. Like all glaciated areas. New Hampshire abounds in lakes—irregular, beautiful sheets of water studded with wooded islets. The largest is Lake Winnipiseogee, 16 miles long and 6 miles wide. Other notable lakes are Umbagog, in the north on the Maine boundary; Squam, northwest of Winnipiseogee; and Sunapee and New Found Lake, in the west.

NIE 1905 New Hampshire - and Vermont.jpg


County Map
 County Seat.   Area in 

1890. 1900.

Belknap H  7  Laconia 410   20,321  19,526 
Carroll J  6  Ossipee 939  18,124  16,895 
Cheshire F 10  Keene 734  29,579  31,321 
Coos J  3  Lancaster 1,812  23,211  29,468 
Grafton G  6  Woodsville 1,691  37,217  40,844 
Hillsboro G 10  Nashua 873  93,247   112,640 
Merrimack G  8  Concord 921  49,435  52,430 
Rockingham  K 10  Exeter 693  49,650  51,118 
Stafford H  8  Dover 394  38,442  39,337 
Sullivan F  9  Newport 538  17,304  18,009 

Climate. The climate is strongly affected by the elevation of the land. It is colder, on the average, than that of Maine, and the winters are severe, the ground being usually snow-covered and the rivers frozen from autumn to spring. The lower Merrimac Valley is the warmest part of the State. It is of alight elevation and but little affected by ocean breezes. Here the mean temperature for January is 21°, and for July 70°, the corresponding figures for the northern portion being 16° and 67°, and for Mount Washington 5° and 47°. The climate is quite humid, and the precipitation sufficient all over the State. It is especially abundant on the mountain summits, where it reaches 55 inches, and on the eastern slope of the mountains, where it ranges from 40 to 40 inches. It is least near the seashore and on the western slope, where there is a fall respectively of only 35 and 30 inches. The whole State is, as a rule, very healthful.

For flora and fauna, see paragraphs under United States.

Geology. New Hampshire consists almost exclusively of ancient crystalline rocks, a fact which has earned for it the title of “Granite State.” The main formations run lengthwise through the State parallel with the coast and the Connecticut River. The eastern or New Hampshire bank of the latter and a broad band along the coast are composed of rocks mainly of the Huronian series. Between these, through the centre of the State, the predominant formation consists of Montalban and other gneisses together with calciferous mica-schists in the north. The structure is, however, complicated by extensive outcrops of still older rocks. A line of granites and diorites appears near the coast west of the Piscataqua, and through the centre of the State, running west of the Merrimac Vallev toward the White Mountains, there are extensive outcrops of porphyritic gneiss. The heart of the White Mountains themselves is composed mainly of granite. Few regions exhibit more well-marked evidences of glacial action than New Hampshire. The rocks are everywhere striated, and boulders of all sizes are scattered all over the State, even on the mountain summits. Moraines are also well marked; but, though there are deposits of glacial drift, and of fertile modified drift along the river valleys, the soils of the State are in general not encouraging to agriculture.

Mineral Resources. The most valuable mineral output of the State is derived from its non-metallic rocks. Up to 1900 New Hampshire ranked first in the production of mica, the output in that year being 191,118 tons. In 1901 it fell to 65,800 tons, and was exceeded by that of North Carolina. The production of granite in 1901 was valued at $935,494. The celebrated Indian Pond and White Mountain scythestones are quarried in great quantities. Copper is mined to some extent, and ores of lead, zinc, tin, arsenic, iron, and some gold and silver are found.

Fisheries. In the fishing industry New Hampshire is the least important of the New England coast States. Its commercial fisheries are confined to Rockingham County, on the Atlantic. The industry showed a considerable decline from 1889 to 1898. The value of the catch (1898) was $48,987, as compared with $88,511 nine years before. The most important catches in 1898 were haddock, cod, and lobsters. The 11 hatcheries of the State distributed in 1900 about 3,256,000 fry, mainly salmon, salmon trout, brook trout, and lake trout.

Forests and Forest Products. The manufacture of lumber products is the oldest of the State's industries. It is claimed that the first sawmill in New England was established near Portsmouth in 1635. In 1900 the woodland was estimated at 5200 square miles. Much of this is cut-over land, the primeval forests of white pine having almost disappeared. But there is an extensive area of second-growth white pine, some of which is merchantable. It is estimated that since 1850 1,764,609 acres (nearly one-third) of the farm land has reverted to unimproved land, most of which is growing up in white pine. The highest mountain slopes are still covered with primeval forests of spruce, the variety of wood most largely used in the manufacture of wood-pulp. The town of Berlin, in the Androscoggin Valley, claims to be the largest pulp-manufacturing centre in the country. The manufacture of this product increased 462 per cent. in the decade 1890-1900. The value of the lumber and timber products increased ninefold from 1850 to 1900, and nearly doubled in the last decade of that period. See table below.

Agriculture. A large portion of the surface of the State lies too broken for agriculture. Only along the coast and in the river valleys is the soil rich and well adapted for farming. Latterly it has been cheaper to import cereals than to grow them in New Hampshire. The number of farms and their total acreage were but slightly greater in 1900 than in 1850, but the area of the improved acreage decreased over one-half during the half-century, amounting in 1900 to only 29.8 per cent. of the farm acreage. The most marked decline in the improved area was from 1890 to 1900. The average size of farms—123.1 acres—was about the same in 1900 as in 1860. Only 7.5 per cent. of the farms are rented. The cash system of lease is rapidly supplanting the share system. In the table below will be noticed the decided decrease in the cereal acreage from 1890 to 1900. Wheat and rye, both formerly of considerable prominence, have practically ceased to be cultivated. A considerable area of corn grown for forage or ensilage is not included in the table figures. As the cereals have decreased in importance much more attention has been given to vegetables, garden products, and fruits. In 1899 the potato crop was, after hay and forage, the most valuable farm crop. Apples are the chief orchard fruit, the number of trees in 1900 being 2,034,398. Many of the abandoned farms in New Hampshire are being acquired for summer homes by residents of cities.

1900 1890

Corn 25,694  23,746 
Oats 12,589  26,618 
Barley 1,596  4,934 
Buckwheat  1,835   3,117 
Hay and forage   615,042   652,722 
Potatoes 19,422  22,085 

1900 1890

Dairy cows 115,036  109,423 
Other cattle   111,756   113,465 
Horses 54,866  52,458 
Sheep 65,318  131,611 
Swine 51,211  58,585 

Stock-Raising. With the changes in the system of agriculture dairying has become an important industry, and the number of dairy cows increased decidedly from 1880 to 1900. The value of dairy products for 1899 was $5,591,272. of which 80.5 per cent. was realized from sales. The number of other cattle, by contrast, decreased after 1850, and the number of sheep in 1900 was only about one-sixth as many as in the former year. The accompanying census figures are self-explaining.

Manufactures. Manufacturing is the leading industry. The percentage of wage-earners engaged therein gradually increased during the last half of the nineteenth century, being 17.1 in 1900, or twice that of 1850. Of the 70,419 thus employed, 21,921 were women. The decade 1890-1900 witnessed the largest absolute gain in the value of products—$118,009,308 in 1900. The southern part of the State possesses the advantage of being close to the business centre of New England, has a convenient harbor at Portsmouth, and shares with Massachusetts the excellent water power afforded by the Merrimac. The manufacturing interests accordingly are confined largely to this section of the State. The manufacture of cotton goods headed all industries until 1900. From its establishment in 1804 its growth has been steady. The water power of the Merrimac was largely the cause of the success of this industry, and determined the location of the two main cotton manufacturing centres—Manchester and Nashua. With the development of this industry in the Southern States latterly, the relative importance of New Hampshire is diminishing. The woolen industry was established in the first year of the nineteenth century. In 1900 the product was valued at a little less than half that of the cotton products. The woolen output decreased slightly during 1890-1900. Hosiery and knit goods are manufactured at Laconia, but in less quantities than formerly. The boot and shoe industry almost doubled the value of its product during 1890-1900, and acquired first rank among the industries of the State. The closely related tanning industry owes its development to the former abundance of the local supply of tanning bark. This branch reached its maximum in 1880, since when it has declined. The manufacture of flouring and grist-mill products is a long established industry, but the factory production of butter, cheese, and condensed milk is of recent though rapid growth. The table following shows the relative importance and condition of the ten leading industries.

INDUSTRIES  Year  Number of
Value of products,
including custom
 work and repairing 

Total for selected industries given below, for State 
1900 1,040  49,828  $85,488,450 
1890 1,001  45,271  63,855,641 

Increase, 1890 to 1900 ...... 39  4,557  21,632,809 
Per cent. of increase ...... 3.9  10.1  33.9
Per cent. of total of all industries in State
1900 22.3  70.8  72.0
1890 31.0  75.3  74.4
Cotton goods
1900 23  20,454  $22,998,249 
1890 27  19,383  21,958,002 
Wool manufactures
1900 45  5,461  10,381,056 
1890 50  6,038  10,769,240 
Hosiery and knit goods
1900 22  2,492  2,592,829 
1890 37  3,121  3,481,922 
Boots and shoes, factory product
1900 67  12,007  23,405,558 
1890 64  7,912  11,986,003 
Leather—tanned, curried, and finished
1900 12  552  2,664,942 
1890 18  608  2,988,209 
Flouring and grist-mill products
1900 149  185  2,505,936 
1890 121  174  2,358,616 
Cheese, butter, and condensed milk—factory product 
1900 53  119  1,467,503 
1890 23  51  494,466 
Foundry and machine-shop products
1900 87  1,979  3,049,234 
1890 76  2,034  2,895,716 
Lumber and timber products
1900 553  4,188  9,218,310 
1890 570  5,370  5,641,445 
Paper and wood pulp
1900 29  2,391  7,204,733 
1890 15  520  1,282,022 

Transportation. The first railroad charter was granted in 1835. In 1850 the mileage amounted to 467 miles. This was increased to 1142 in 1890, and 1193 in 1900. The numerous small lines have been consolidated until in 1900 the lines were operated by three companies—the Boston and Maine, the Grand Trunk, and the Maine Central. The railroad built up Mount Washington in 1868 is a remarkable piece of engineering. In its steepest part it ascends 1980 feet to the mile. Portsmouth is a port of entry, but its foreign trade is insignificant.

Banks. The first bank was the New Hampshire Bank, of Portsmouth, chartered in 1792 and until 1800 the only hank in the State. In the beginning of the nineteenth century several banks were established, which called forth special legislation, and as early as 1814 the State passed a law requiring annual reports from them. By 1835 there were twenty-five banks in the State, but in the financial panic of 1837 many suspended payment. In 1845 there were only seventeen banks, with a small aggregate capital, and a circulation of less than $1,000,000. In the next decade the banks recovered, and by 1863, when the national banking system was introduced, there were fifty two State banks in operation, with a capital of almost $5,000,000. By 1870 all but three banks had become national. State banks have remained unimportant since then. Private banks have been prohibited since 1799.

Lower House. Members ‘seasonably attending’ are paid $200, exclusive of mileage.

Executive. The Governor and the five members of the Governor's Council are chosen biennially in the month of November. The resolutions and advice of the Governor's Council are recorded, and may be called for at any time by either House of the Legislature. A two-thirds vote of each House overcomes the Governor's veto. The president of the Senate and the Speaker of the House are in the line of succession to the Governorship in case of vacancy. The pardoning power rests with the Governor, with the advice of the Council. The Secretary, Treasurer, and Commissary-General are chosen by joint ballot of the Senators and Representatives.

Judiciary. The Legislature erects and constitutes judicatures, courts of record, and other courts. Most judicial officers, including the Attorney-General, coroners, and registers of probate, are appointed by the Governor. Judicial officers serve during good behavior, except justices of the peace, whose terms expire in five years.

Local Government. The laws of the State provide for the election in each county of a treasurer, register of probate, solicitor, sheriff, and register of deeds.

Militia. The population of militia age in 1900 was 88,149. The militia in 1901 numbered 1342.

Population. The growth of the population is shown by the following figures: 1790, 141,885; 1820, 244,022; 1850, 317,976; 1860, 326,073; 1870, 318,300; 1880, 346,991; 1890, 376,530; 1900, 411,588. New Hampshire ranked 10th among the States of the Union in 1790, 22d in 1850, and 36th in 1900. The largest gain was made in the first census decade, and the population actually decreased in the decade 1860-70. The gain between 1890 and 1900 amounted to 9.3 per cent., as compared with 20.7 for the United States. Throughout the century the State contributed largely to the tide of Western migration, but this outflow has been offset in recent years by the increase in the immigration of foreigners, particularly French-Canadians, who constitute over half of the 88,107 foreign born returned by the census of 1900. The 15 towns exceeding each 4000 inhabitants collectively contain 46.7 per cent. of the total population. The density of population in 1900 was 45.7 per square mile. The State sends two members to the National House of Representatives.

Cities. The population of the largest towns in 1900 was: Manchester, 56,987; Nashua, 23,898; Concord, 19,632; Dover, 13,207; Portsmouth, 10,637. The capital is Concord.

Religion. The Roman Catholic element amounts to about 10 per cent. of the total population of the State. The principal Protestant denominations are the Congregational, with about 20 per cent. of all the church members; the Baptist, with over 17 per cent.; and the Methodist, with about 12 per cent.

Education. A number of town schools were established in accordance with the law of 1647. Grants of land for educational purposes were made before the War of Independence. In 1769, 44,000 acres were granted for the establishment of a college, and in 1821 a law was passed appropriating for a literary fund the taxes from banking corporations. The illiterate population amounted in 1900 to 6.2 per cent. of the total population of ten years and over. Of the whole school population of 71,544 in 1900, there were enrolled 65,688. The average attendance amounted to 47,276, or about 72 per cent. of the total enrollment. The total number of schools fell off from 2644 in 1882 to 2198 in 1900, but the number of graded schools increased from 481 to 773 during the same period. The length of the school term was nearly 148 days in 1900, as compared with about 118 days in 1890. The school revenue for 1900 amounted to $1,120,219, of which only $15,707 was derived from the permanent school fund. From the State came $55,519, and from local taxes, $997,667. New Hampshire has only one State normal school (at Plymouth). Representing secondary education there were, in 1900, 57 public high schools, with a total attendance of 3700, and 33 private high schools and academies, with a total attendance of 2600. The institutions of higher education are Dartmouth College, at Hanover, and Saint Anselm's College (Roman Catholic), at Manchester.

Charitable and Penal Institutions. The State Board of Charity and Correction consists of five members appointed by the Governor and Council, and of the secretary of the State Board of Health. This board inspects all State and county charitable or correctional institutions, except the State prison and the asylum for the insane (both of which are located at Concord). The changes recommended by it must be made by the responsible officers. In 1902 there were 1203 children wholly or partially supported by public charity, 979 of them being in orphan asylums. There are 15 private orphan homes—7 Protestant and 8 Catholic—but in all but one of these, county or city children are boarded at public charge. There is a State industrial school for boys and girls, located at Manchester. In 1901 the State Legislature made appropriations for the erection of a State school for feeble-minded. During the year ending September 30, 1902, were accommodated in the almshouses of the State 1630 persons, of whom 687 were confined because of insanity, feeble-mindedness, or epilepsy. Drunkards and petty criminals are sometimes committed to the pauper institution, where they mingle freely with the other inmates. At the State prison the convicts are worked under the contract system, a fixed sum being paid per day per convict. The State has general control of the convicts.

History. The first explorer of this region was probably Martin Pring, who anchored in Piscataqua Harbor in 1603. It was included in the grant to the Council for New England in 1620, and this body on August 10, 1622, granted to John Mason and Sir Ferdinando Gorges all the land lying between the Merrimac and Kennebec for sixty miles inland, under the title ‘Province of Maine.’ The next year David Thomson settled at Little Harbor. In 1627 Edward Hilton settled at Dover Neck, and secured a patent later in 1629 or 1630. The province was divided November 7, 1629, and that part lying between the Merrimac and the Piscataqua fell to Mason. In November, 1631, Mason and Gorges, together with a number of merchants, received from the Council territory lying on both sides of the Piscataqua within the territory already granted to them. Several trading stations were founded, the most important of which was Strawberry Bank (Portsmouth). Many settlers came out, but the proprietors derived little profit from the colony. When the Council dissolved in 1635, Mason was confirmed in all his grants and received 100,000 acres more west of the Kennebec. The settlement of Exeter was founded by Rev. John Wheelwright in 1638 after his expulsion from Massachusetts Bay. All these settlements were practically independent and with little form of organized government. Mason was a busy man who paid little attention to this province, which was named for his native Hampshire in England. Massachusetts Bay looked with disfavor upon the settlements of Royalists and Churchmen, and laid claim to the territory. In 1641 all the settlements except Exeter were joined to Massachusetts, and Exeter followed in 1643. Mason's grandson, Robert Tufton Mason, applied to the King for restitution of the territory granted to his ancestor. A decision that Massachusetts had usurped possession was secured in 1677, and in 1679 a decree declaring New Hampshire a royal province was issued, but Mason received little satisfaction. It remained a royal province until the Revolution, but its existence was dependent entirely upon the King's will, as no charter was issued. The Governor of Massachusetts was often commissioned the Governor of New Hampshire as well. After the expulsion of Andros in 1689 New Hampshire asked to be incorporated with Massachusetts, but was refused. The colony suffered greatly in the Indian wars of the eighteenth century, but nevertheless gradually extended its settlements north and west. Boundary disputes were frequent. The dispute over the southern and eastern boundaries was settled in 1740, but the question of the possession of Vermont was not settled until 1764. During the Revolution New Hampshire bore a conspicuous part. The Continental Congress, from which counsel was asked, advised the formation of a temporary State. A convention at Exeter, December-January, 1775-76, adopted a brief constitution. In 1779 a constitution was submitted to the people, but was rejected. A convention, June 12, 1781-October 31, 1783, framed a new constitution, which was ratified and went into effect June 2, 1784. Another convention, September 7, 1791-September 5, 1792, drafted a third constitution, which was ratified during the session of the convention. This provided that the question of the expediency of revision must be submitted to the people every seven years. Accordingly, modifications were made in 1852, 1877, 1889.

The State was the ninth to ratify the Federal Constitution, June 21, 1788, thus making certain the establishment of the United States. The capital of the Province of New Hampshire was Portsmouth. Until 1805 it was migratory, but at that date Concord was chosen. New Hampshire was Federalist in national politics till 1816, with the exception of 1804, when it voted for Jefferson. From 1816 to 1852 it was consistently Democratic. Since 1856 it has been stanchly Republican. The following is a list of the Governors of the Colony and State of New Hampshire:

As a Royal Province
John Cutts 1679-80
Richard Waldron 1681
Edward Cranfield 1682-85
Walter Barefoote 1686
Joseph Dudley 1686
Edmund Andros 1686-89
Simon Bradstreet 1690-92
Samuel Allen 1693-98
Richard Coote, earl of Bellamont 1699-1701
Joseph Dudley 1702-14
Samuel Shute 1716-24
William Buruet 1728-29
Jonathan Belcher 1730-40
Benning Wentworth 1740-67
John Wentworth 1767-75
As a State
Matthew Thornton, President Provincial Convention  1775 
Meschech Weare, President of the State 1776-84
Meschech Weare 1784
John Langdon 1784-85
John Sullivan 1786-87
John Langdon 1788
John Sullivan 1789
Josiah Bartlett 1790-92
Josiah Bartlett Federalist 1792-94
John T. Gilman 1794-1805
John Langdon Democrat-Republican 1805-09
Jeremiah Smith Federalist 1809-10
John Langdon Democrat-Republican 1810-12
William Plumer 1812-13
John Taylor Gilman Federalist 1813-16
William Plumer Democrat-Republican 1816-19
Samuel Bell 1819-23
Levi Woodbury 1823-24
David L. Morril 1824-27
Benjamin Pierce 1827-29
John Bell Democrat 1829-30
Matthew Harvey 1830-31
Joseph M. Harper (acting) 1831
Samuel Dinsmoor 1831-34
William Badger 1834-36
Isaac Hill 1836-39
John Page 1839-42
Henry Hubbard 1842-44
John H. Steele 1844-46
Anthony Colby 1846-47
Jared W. Williams 1847-49
Samuel Dinsmoor 1849-52
Noah Martin 1852-54
Nathaniel B. Baker 1854-55
Ralph Metcalf American 1855-57
William Haile Democrat 1857-59
Ichabod Goodwin Republican 1859-61
Nathaniel S. Berry 1861-63
Joseph A. Gilmore 1863-65
Frederic Smyth 1865-67
Walter Harriman 1867-69
Onslow Stearns 1869-71
James A. Weston Democrat 1871-72
Ezekiel Straw Republican 1872-74
James A. Weston Democrat 1874-75
Person Colby Cheney Republican 1875-77
Benjamin F. Prescott 1877-79
Natt Head 1879-81
Charles H. Bell 1881-83
Samuel W. Hale 1883-85
Moody Currier 1885-87
Charles H. Sawyer 1887-89
David H. Goodell 1889-91
Hiram A. Tuttle 1891-93
John B. Smith 1893-95
Charles A. Busiel 1895-97
George A. Ramsdell 1897-99
Frank W. Rollins 1899-1901
Chester B. Jordan 1901-03
N. J. Bachelder 1903 —

Bibliography. Belknap, The History of New Hampshire (Boston, 1813); Barstow, The History of New Hampshire (Boston, 1853); Sanborn, History of New Hampshire (Manchester, N. H., 1875); McClintock, History of New Hampshire (New York, 1889); New Hampshire State Library Annual Report contains bibliography (Concord, 1891).