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New Hampshire

Read this profile of New Hampshire to learn about the state's history, points of interest, and government. Also find interesting facts about each state, including the state's motto, symbols, and when it entered the union.
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Map of NH

Capital: Concord

State abbreviation: N.H.

Postal code: NH

Population est.: 1,309,940

Largest City (2005 est.): Manchester, 109,691

Land area: 8,968 sq mi. (23,227 sq km)

U.S. Representatives: 2

Entered Union (rank): June 21, 1788 (9)

Motto: Live free or die

Origin of name: From the English county of Hampshire

State symbols:

flower: purple lilac
bird: purple finch
song: "Old New Hampshire" and "New Hampshire, My New Hampshire"
tree: white birch

Nickname: Granite State

Residents: New Hampshirite

Did you know: Artificial rain was first used near Concord in 1947 to fight a forest fire

Map of NH

History

Under an English land grant, Capt. John Smith sent settlers to establish a fishing colony at the mouth of the Piscataqua River, near present-day Rye and Dover, in 1623. Capt. John Mason, who participated in the founding of Portsmouth in 1630, gave New Hampshire its name.

After a 38-year period of union with Massachusetts, New Hampshire was made a separate royal colony in 1679. As leaders in the revolutionary cause, New Hampshire delegates received the honor of being the first to vote for the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. New Hampshire gained a measure of international attention in 1905 when Portsmouth Naval Base played host to the signing of the treaty ending the Russo-Japanese War, known as the Treaty of Portsmouth.

Abundant water power turned New Hampshire into an industrial state early on, and manufacturing is the principal source of income. The most important industrial products are electrical and other machinery, textiles, pulp and paper products, and stone and clay products. Dairy and poultry, and growing fruit, truck vegetables, corn, potatoes, and hay are the major agricultural pursuits.

Because of New Hampshire's scenic and recreational resources, tourism now brings over $3.5 billion into the state annually.

Vacation attractions include Lake Winnipesaukee, largest of 1,300 lakes and ponds; the 724,000-acre White Mountain National Forest; Daniel Webster's birthplace near Franklin; and Strawbery Banke, restored buildings of the original settlement at Portsmouth. In 2003, the famous "Old Man of the Mountain" granite head profile, the state's official emblem, fell from its perch in Franconia.

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