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Grafton County, New Hampshire
Map of New Hampshire highlighting Grafton County
Location in the state of New Hampshire
Map of the U.S. highlighting New Hampshire
New Hampshire's location in the U.S.
Founded 1769
Named for Augustus FitzRoy, 3rd Duke of Grafton
Seat Haverhill
Largest city Lebanon
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

1,750.21 sq mi (4,533 km²)
1,713.33 sq mi (4,438 km²)
36.88 sq mi (96 km²), 2.10%
 - (2010)
 - Density

52/sq mi (20/km²)
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Grafton County is a county located in the U.S. state of New Hampshire. As of the 2010 census, the population was 89,118.[1] Its county seat is North Haverhill,[2] which is a village within the town of Haverhill. Until 1972, the county courthouse and other offices were located in downtown Woodsville, a larger village within the town of Haverhill. Grafton County is part of the Lebanon, NH–VT Micropolitan Statistical Area.

The county is the home of Dartmouth College and Plymouth State University. Progressive Farmer rated Grafton County fourth in its list of the "Best Places to Live in Rural America" in 2006, citing low unemployment (despite slow economic growth), a favorable cost of living, and the presence of White Mountain National Forest, the state's only national forest.

History[edit | edit source]

Grafton was one of the five counties originally identified for New Hampshire in 1769. It was named for Augustus FitzRoy, 3rd Duke of Grafton, who had been a supporter of American causes in Parliament, and who was serving as British Prime Minister at the time. The county was organized at Woodsville in 1771, and originally included the entire northern frontier of New Hampshire, including a number of towns that are now in Vermont. In 1803, the northern area was removed for the formation of Coos County. The three counties to the south were Strafford, Hillsborough and Cheshire, and the eastern edge bordered the "District of Maine". In 1797, the county contained 50 townships and 17 locations, and had a population of 23,093.[3]

Geography[edit | edit source]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,750 square miles (4,532 km2), of which 1,713 sq mi (4,437 km2) is land and 37 sq mi (96 km2) (2.10%) is water.

Grafton County is heavily rural. About half of its total area is in the White Mountain National Forest. Squam Lake, featured in the film On Golden Pond, and the Old Man of the Mountain landmark are located here, as are Dartmouth College and the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest. Many of the 4,000-foot mountains of New Hampshire are within the county. The Appalachian Trail passes through parts of at least ten towns in the county.

Adjacent counties[edit | edit source]

National protected area[edit | edit source]

Politics and government[edit | edit source]

Presidential election results[4]
Year Democrat Republican
2008 63.0% 31,446 35.5% 17,687
2004 55.7% 26,180 43.2% 20,277
2000 47.3% 18,326 46.7% 18,092

In the 2000 U.S. Presidential election, Al Gore narrowly defeated George W. Bush, taking 47.31% of the vote to Bush's 46.71%. Other candidates got a combined 5.98%. In 2004 John Kerry defeated George Bush by a wider margin: Kerry received 55.74% of the vote, while Bush received 43.17%. In 2008, Barack Obama carried Grafton by a landslide, receiving 63.03% of the vote to John McCain's 35.45%. It was Obama's highest percentage by county in New Hampshire.[5]

County Commission[edit | edit source]

The three districts of Grafton County's Commissioners and their party representations

The executive power of Grafton County's government is held by three county commissioners, each representing one of the three commissioner districts within the county.

District Name Hometown Party
District 1 Michael J. Cryans Hanover, NH Democrat
District 2 Raymond S. Burton Bath, NH Republican[6]
District 3 Omer C. Ahern Jr Plymouth, NH Republican

In addition to the County Commission, there are also five directly-elected officials: they include County Attorney, Register of Deeds, County Sheriff, Register of Probate, and County Treasurer.

Office Name Party
County Attorney Ricardo St. Hilaire Republican[6]
Register of Deeds Bill Sharp Democrat
County Sheriff Doug Dutile Republican[6]
Register of Probate Rebecca Wyman Republican
County Treasurer Vanessa Sievers Democrat

Legislative Branch[edit | edit source]

The legislative branch of Grafton County is made up of all of the members of the New Hampshire House of Representatives from the county. In total, there are 26 members from 11 different districts.

Affiliation Members Voting Share
  Democratic Party 13 50%
  Republican Party 13 50%
Total 26 100%

Members[edit | edit source]

The 11 Legislative Districts of Grafton County, and the percentage of party representation in each.

District Name Party Hometown
District 01 Lyle E. Bulis Republican Littleton, NH
District 01 Stephanie Eaton Republican Littleton, NH
District 02 Kathleen Taylor Democrat Franconia, NH
District 03 Edmond Gionet Republican Lincoln, NH
District 03 Gregory M. Sorg Republican Easton, NH
District 04 Lester W. Bradley Republican Woodstock, NH
District 05 Roderick Ladd Republican Haverhill, NH
District 05 Paul Ingbretson Republican Pike, NH
District 06 James Aguiar Democrat Campton, NH
District 06 Charles Brosseau Republican Wentworth, NH
District 07 Mary Cooney Democrat Plymouth, NH
District 07 Suzanne Smith Democrat Hebron, NH
District 08 Skip Reilly Sr. Republican Holderness, NH
District 08 Jeff Shackett Republican Ashland, NH
District 08 Paul H. Simard Republican Bristol, NH
District 09 Bernard Benn Democrat Hanover, NH
District 09 Beatriz Pastor-Bodmer Democrat Lyme, NH
District 09 Sharon Nordgren Democrat Hanover, NH
District 09 David Pierce Democrat Etna, NH
District 10 Paul Mirski Republican Enfield, NH
District 10 Charles E. Sova Republican Grafton, NH
District 10 Chuck Townsend Democrat Canaan, NH
District 11 Susan Almy Democrat Lebanon, NH
District 11 Gene Anderson Democrat Lebanon, NH
District 11 Franklin Gould Democrat Lebanon, NH
District 11 A. Laurie Harding Democrat Lebanon, NH

Demographics[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1790 13,468
1800 23,093 71.5%
1810 28,462 23.2%
1820 32,989 15.9%
1830 38,682 17.3%
1840 42,311 9.4%
1850 42,343 0.1%
1860 42,260 −0.2%
1870 39,103 −7.5%
1880 38,788 −0.8%
1890 37,217 −4.1%
1900 40,844 9.7%
1910 41,652 2.0%
1920 40,572 −2.6%
1930 42,816 5.5%
1940 44,645 4.3%
1950 47,923 7.3%
1960 48,857 1.9%
1970 54,914 12.4%
1980 65,806 19.8%
1990 74,929 13.9%
2000 81,743 9.1%
2010 89,118 9.0%

As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 81,743 people, 31,598 households, and 20,254 families residing in the county. The population density was 48 people per square mile (18/km²). There were 43,729 housing units at an average density of 26 per square mile (10/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 95.76% White, 1.73% Asian, 0.53% Black or African American, 0.31% Native American, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 1.26% from two or more races. 1.12% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 19.0% were of English, 12.9% Irish, 11.1% French, 7.8% American, 7.5% German, 6.8% French Canadian and 5.5% Italian ancestry according to Census 2000. 95.1% spoke English, 1.5% French and 1.3% Spanish as their first language.

There were 31,598 households out of which 29.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.40% were married couples living together, 8.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.90% were non-families. 27.40% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 2.90.

In the county the population was spread out with 21.90% under the age of 18, 13.50% from 18 to 24, 27.00% from 25 to 44, 24.20% from 45 to 64, and 13.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 96.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.30 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $41,962, and the median income for a family was $50,424. Males had a median income of $31,874 versus $25,286 for females. The per capita income for the county was $22,227. About 5.10% of families and 8.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.60% of those under age 18 and 7.50% of those age 65 or over.

Cities and towns[edit | edit source]

There are 38 towns and one city in Grafton County.

**Unincorporated civil township
***Census-designated place

Radio stations in Grafton County[edit | edit source]

(Compiled from

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. ^ United States Census Bureau, American FactFinder, 2010 Census figures. Retrieved March 23, 2011.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ Morse, Jedidiah: "The American Gazetteer", Thomas & Andrews, 1810
  4. ^ "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Retrieved 2011-06-11. 
  5. ^ U.S. Election Atlas
  6. ^ a b c Also nominated by the Democratic Party in the most recent election.
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

External links[edit | edit source]

Coordinates: 43°56′N 71°50′W / 43.93, -71.84

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