One of the New England states of the NE United States. It is bordered by Massachusetts, Vermont, with the Connecticut R. forming the boundary, the Canadian province of Quebec, and Maine and a short strip of the Atlantic Ocean.
Area, 9,304 sq mi (24,097 sq km).
Pop. (2000) 1,235,786, an 11.4% increase since the 1990 census.
Largest city, Manchester.
Nickname, Granite State.
Motto, Live Free or Die.
State bird, purple finch.
State flower, purple lilac.
State tree, white birch.
Year-round tourism is the state's leading industry. Many visitors come to enjoy the state's beaches, mountains, and lakes. The largest lake, Winnipesaukee, is dotted with 274 inhabitable islands, while along the Atlantic shore 18 mi (29 km) of curving beaches (many state-owned) attract vacationers. Of the rugged Isles of Shoals off the coast, three belong to New Hampshire. Originally fishing colonies, they are now used largely as summer residences.
In the winter skiers flock northward, and the state has responded to the increasing popularity of winter sports by greatly expanding its facilities. When the snows melt, skiers are replaced by hikers, rafters, and climbers. Folk crafts such as wood carving, weaving, and pottery making have been revived to meet the tourist market.
New Hampshire has 142 state parks and forests, and the White Mountains National Forest, which extends into Maine, has c.724,000 acres (293,000 hectares) in New Hampshire. The state's scenic beauty and serenity have long inspired writers and artists. Hawthorne, Whittier, and Longfellow summered in New Hampshire. Augustus Saint-Gaudens sculpted many of his finest works at the artist's colony at Cornish, and the MacDowell Colony at Peterborough is a summer haven for musicians, artists, and writers. The state is most intimately connected with the works of Robert Frost; Frost himself once said that there was not one of his poems “but has something in it of New Hampshire.”
* Information from Columbia Excyclopedia, Sixth Edition