Where Did New Hampshire Get Its Name From?

A scene from Hampshire, England, for which New Hampshire, USA is named.
A scene from Hampshire, England, for which New Hampshire, USA is named.

New Hampshire is a state in the New England region of the United States. Its capital is Concord while its largest and most populous city is Manchester. New Hampshire was among the pioneers of a number of important events in the United States. For instance, in January 1776, the state became the first colony of British North American to take a step towards forming a government. The established government was independent of the authority and rulings from Great Britain. It was also the first state to develop a state constitution. New Hampshire was among the first 13 states that formed the US. In June 1788, New Hampshire was the ninth state to ratify its constitution.

How Did New Hampshire Get Its Name?

New Hampshire was named after the county of Hampshire in England. The English county of Hampshire was named after an old English word “Hamtun.” Hamtun can roughly be translated to mean “village-town.” The name Hamtun underwent gradual evolution to become Hampshire. The original city of Hampshire, where New Hampshire got its name from is now known as the city of Southampton.

Hampshire was once a point of departure from England. After getting out of England, travelers would get into the East Coast, which was then the entry point. This entry point was thereafter named New Hampshire, which later became one of the founder states of the United States. This happened in the early 17th century.

Captain John Mason is credited with naming the state of New Hampshire after Hampshire. John Mason was an English Sailor. His wide experience in sailing made him conversant with the activities carried out in the current New Hampshire and the neighboring states such as Massachusetts. On realizing the close relationship between Hampshire and the East Coast, he decided to name the region New Hampshire.

Geography of New Hampshire

New Hampshire is a located in the Northeastern US. It is borders Massachusetts to the south, Maine and the Atlantic Ocean to the west, Vermont to the east, and Quebec to the north. It is the fifth smallest state and the tenth least populous.

The state has extensive granite deposits and quarries. For this reason, it has been nicknamed “the Granite State.” Some of the largest ski mountains in the East Coast are located in New Hampshire. Thus, skiing, mountaineering, hiking, and snowmobiling are common in the state during the winter season. The most popular mountains in the state are Mount Washington, Mount Adams, Mount Madison, and the White Mountain Ranges.

Climate of New Hampshire

The climate of New Hampshire is described as humid continental climate. The summers are warm and humid. The winters tend to be cold and long. The southern portion of the state experiences milder winters because the climate is influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. However, the winters are snowy throughout the state. The winters are harsher on the northern side and on the mountains. Precipitation in the state is fairly distributed all year round.


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