Bradford, New Hampshire

Bradford is a town in Merrimack County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 1,650 at the 2010 census.[1] The main village of the town, where 356 people resided at the 2010 census,[1] is defined as the Bradford census-designated place (CDP), and is located in the northeast part of the town, west of the junction of New Hampshire routes 103 and 114. The town also includes the village of Bradford Center.

Bradford, New Hampshire
Bradford Town Hall
Bradford Town Hall
Official seal of Bradford, New Hampshire

Location in Merrimack County and the state of New Hampshire.
Location in Merrimack County and the state of New Hampshire.
Coordinates: 43°16′12″N 71°57′36″W / 43.27000°N 71.96000°WCoordinates: 43°16′12″N 71°57′36″W / 43.27000°N 71.96000°W
CountryUnited States
StateNew Hampshire
Bradford Center
 • Board of SelectmenJim Bibbo, Chair
Michael James
John Pfeifle
 • Town AdministratorKaren Hambleton
 • Total36.0 sq mi (93.3 km2)
 • Land35.3 sq mi (91.5 km2)
 • Water0.7 sq mi (1.8 km2)  1.94%
686 ft (209 m)
 • Total1,650
 • Density46/sq mi (18/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s)603
FIPS code33-06980
GNIS feature ID0873549


Depot Square, Bradford, NH
Depot Square in 1913

Granted by Governor Benning Wentworth in 1765 [2] to John Pierce and George Jaffrey of Portsmouth, it was settled in 1771 by Dea. William Presbury and family.[3] Three years later other settlers arrived, several of them from Bradford, Massachusetts, after which the town was named New Bradford. Later, it was called Bradfordton, but upon incorporation by the General Court on September 27, 1787, it was officially named Bradford.[4]

Parts of the town are hilly, but the largest portion is in a valley with varied soil. Streams provided water power for watermills. By 1859, when Bradford's population reached 1,341, industries included one woolen mill, one sash, blind and door factory, one wheelwright shop, two sawmills, one gristmill, one tannery, and one clothing mill.[4] In 1850, the Concord & Claremont Railroad opened from Concord to Bradford, which would remain its terminus until the line was extended to Claremont in 1871-72.[5]

Depot, Bradford, NH

Concord & Claremont Railroad depot in 1906

Bradford Hotel, Bradford, NH

The Bradford Hotel in 1906

Lake Massasecum, Bradford, NH

Lake Massasecum in 1909


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 36.0 square miles (93 km2), of which 35.3 sq mi (91 km2) is land and 0.7 sq mi (1.8 km2) is water, comprising 1.94% of the town. The village of Bradford is located near the northern border of the town, at the intersection of routes 103 and 114, just north of the Warner River and adjacent to the outlet of Todd Lake. The largest water body in the town is Lake Massasecum, near the town's eastern border.

The highest point in Bradford is an unnamed 2,096-foot (639 m) summit overlooking Ayers Pond on the town's western border. Knights Hill—1,910 ft (580 m) above sea level—and Rowes Hill—1,950 ft (590 m)—constitute a large, hilly mass occupying the southern portion of town. Bradford lies fully within the Merrimack River watershed.[6]


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 20171,685[7]2.1%
U.S. Decennial Census[8]

As of the census of 2010, there were 1,650 people, 667 households, and 471 families residing in the town. There were 917 housing units, of which 250, or 27.3%, were vacant. 203 of the vacant units were for seasonal or recreational uses. The racial makeup of the town was 97.5% white, 0.1% African American, 0.4% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.1% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, 0.2% some other race, and 1.6% from two or more races. 1.3% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.[9]

Of the 667 households, 29.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.7% were headed by married couples living together, 7.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.4% were non-families. 21.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.1% were someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47, and the average family size was 2.86.[9]

In the town, 20.7% of the population were under the age of 18, 6.3% were from 18 to 24, 20.9% from 25 to 44, 38.9% from 45 to 64, and 13.2% were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 46.3 years. For every 100 females, there were 100.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.6 males.[9]

For the period 2011-2015, the estimated median annual income for a household was $59,783, and the median income for a family was $68,750. Male full-time workers had a median income of $55,119 versus $40,000 for females. The per capita income for the town was $28,152. 7.1% of the population and 4.8% of families were below the poverty line. 7.8% of the population under the age of 18 and 8.5% of those 65 or older were living in poverty.[10]

Sites of interest

Notable people


  1. ^ a b United States Census Bureau, American FactFinder, 2010 Census figures. Retrieved March 23, 2011.
  2. ^ Hayward's New England Gazetteer of 1839
  3. ^ Nathaniel Bouton, Documents and Records Relating to Towns in New Hampshire; Concord, New Hampshire 1875
  4. ^ a b Austin J. Coolidge & John B. Mansfield, A History and Description of New England; Boston, Massachusetts 1859
  5. ^ Nashua City Station Railroad History -- The Concord & Claremont Railroad
  6. ^ Foster, Debra H.; Batorfalvy, Tatianna N.; Medalie, Laura (1995). Water Use in New Hampshire: An Activities Guide for Teachers. U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. Geological Survey.
  7. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2017 (PEPANNRES): Minor Civil Divisions – New Hampshire". Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  8. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2016.
  9. ^ a b c "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (DP-1): Bradford town, Merrimack County, New Hampshire". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  10. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics: 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP03): Bradford town, Merrimack County, New Hampshire". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved November 2, 2017.

External links

Austin E. Cofrin

Austin Ellsworth Cofrin (October 10, 1883 – May 27, 1980) was an American industrialist that founded the Fort Howard Paper Company in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Bainbridge Wadleigh

Bainbridge Wadleigh (January 4, 1831 – January 24, 1891) was a United States Senator from New Hampshire. Born in Bradford, he attended the common schools and Kimball Union Academy (Meriden, New Hampshire). He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1850 and commenced practice in Milford. Wadleigh served six terms as town moderator and was a member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives in 1855-1856, 1859-1860, and from 1869 to 1872.

Bement Covered Bridge

The Bement Covered Bridge is a historic wooden covered bridge on Center Road over the Warner River in Bradford, New Hampshire. A Long truss bridge, it was built in 1854, and is one of New Hampshire's small number of surviving 19th-century covered bridges. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.

Bradford (CDP), New Hampshire

Bradford is a census-designated place (CDP) and the main village in the town of Bradford in Merrimack County, New Hampshire, United States. The population of the CDP was 356 at the 2010 census, out of 1,650 in the entire town of Bradford.

Bradford Center Meetinghouse

The Bradford Center Meetinghouse is a historic church at 18 Rowe Mountain Road in Bradford, New Hampshire. Built in 1838 in what was then the town center, it is a well-preserved example of rural Greek Revival church architecture. The meetinghouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2013.

Bradford Town Hall (New Hampshire)

The Bradford Town Hall is located on West Main Street in Bradford, New Hampshire. Built in the 1860s with timbers from an earlier meeting house, it has been the town's center of civic affairs since then. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

John Milton Hawks

John Milton Hawks (November 26, 1826– April 2, 1910) was an abolitionist, surgeon and organizer for the assistance of freed blacks and black soldiers during the U.S. Civil War as well as a businessman and Florida settler in Volusia County. During Reconstruction he was secretary of the board of registration for Volusia County. He was also clerk of the Florida House of Representatives from 1868 to 1870. A plaque in his honor is located at the Edgewater City Hall at 104 North Riverside Drive in Edgewater, Florida. Hawks wrote The East Coast of Florida: A Descriptive Narrative, published in 1887 by L.J. Sweett

and/ or Lewis & Winsship He is listed as a Great Floridian. His wife, Esther Jane (Hill) Hawks(1833 - 1906), was also a doctor and helped educate black soldiers and their families. She was an 1857 graduate of the New England Female Medical College.In addition to being a physician, Hawks was an author, historian, teacher, newspaper publisher, army officer, orange grower, first superintendent of Volusia County Schools and founder of Hawks Park, later renamed Edgewater Park. Esther's diary was found in an attic in 1975 and published as A Woman Doctor's Civil War: Esther Hill Hawks' Diary. It was edited by Gerald Schwartz and covers a period before the Hawks settled in Florida.Hawks was born on November 26, 1826 in Bradford, New Hampshire to Colburn and Clarissa Brown Hawks. He passed the teacher's exam at age 15, studied medicine two years later while teaching in Georgia and received his medical degree in 1847. Hawks was a doctor and staunch abolitionist in Manchester, New Hampshire until volunteering as a physician to treat freed black soldiers during the Civil War.In December 1861, he volunteered as a physician in South Carolina to treat escaped slaves in Sea Islands, South Carolina. He established a school for the freed blacks and "recruited most of the 33rd Colored Troops for the Union Army then served as their physician" and "was one of the first to urge emancipation of the slaves and to use them as soldiers." He was appointed Assistant Surgeon with the rank of Major in the Union Army's 33rd Colored Troops. Hawks was then appointed Surgeon of the 21st Colored Troops and practiced in Jacksonville, Florida in 1872 after his service in the U.S. Civil War. He treated former slaves and freedmen, who he had also advocated for before the war.Hawks advocated for the creation of the first Freedman's Savings Bank. In 1865, he helped found the Florida Land and Lumber Company with other officers. The business provided homes and jobs for freed slaves. He named the business's settlement for freed blacks Port Orange, and some of the families remained in the area now known as Freemanville. Most of the homesteads were located north of Spruce Creek and northwest of the inlet, near Dunlawton. Its first post office was built in 1867 in what is now the town of Ponce Inlet and was moved a few miles north in 1868. Esther taught with the Freedmen's Aid Society and may have established the first integrated school in Florida.Sandy soil proved a challenge and corruption is believed to have caused supplies to be stolen before being delivered to the settlement which soon failed. A report found the colonists who remained in poor condition and surviving by eating coutee or coontie (the starchy roots of a native plant), palmetto cabbage and fish they caught.Esther continued teaching after the colony's decline, but in January 1869 a new schoolhouse was torched and in 1870 she returned to New England to practice medicine. Eighty-three blacks remained in the eastern part of Volusia County. Hawks planted an orange grove south of Port Orange on the Indian River and established Hawks Park in 1871, it was renamed Edgewater by the Florida State Legislature in 1924.

Henry Tolliver, a successful black homesteader, and Hannah Tolliver owned land in the northwest corner of Port Orange. Some of the former colonists lived on their land in a community later dubbed Freemanville. Tolliver made molasses and grew corn, cotton, peas, beans and sweet potatoes. His wife made and sold clothing.Hawks died April 2, 1910, and was buried in Hawks Park Cemetery in Volusia County. It was later renamed Edgewater New Smyrna Cemetery and is located in what is now Edgewater, Florida at plot location Old North, Section 3. A monument to the couple is also located in Pine Grove Cemetery in Manchester, New Hampshire. In 1924 Hawks Park was renamed Edgewater.

John Q. A. Brackett

John Quincy Adams Brackett (June 8, 1842 – April 6, 1918) was an American lawyer and politician from Massachusetts. A Republican and temperance advocate, he served one term as the 36th Governor of Massachusetts, from 1890 to 1891. Born in New Hampshire and educated at Harvard, he practiced law in Boston before entering politics.

In the Massachusetts House of Representatives, Brackett rose to become Speaker in 1885, and was elected Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts under Governor Oliver Ames. He succeeded Ames, but his bid for reelection in 1891 was ended by strict enforcement of restrictive liquor laws, and by the negative economic effects on the state of the McKinley Tariff. He was a delegate to the Massachusetts Constitutional Convention of 1917–1918, but died before it ended.

List of New Hampshire locations by per capita income

In 2015 New Hampshire ranked fifth in terms of per capita income in the United States of America, at $34,362 as of the 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-year estimate.

List of Presidents of the New Hampshire Senate

The position of President of the New Hampshire Senate was created when the New Hampshire Senate was founded in 1784.

Mason Tappan

Mason Weare Tappan (October 20, 1817 – October 25, 1886) was a New Hampshire state representative, a U.S. Congressman from 1855 to 1861, a colonel during the American Civil War and the New Hampshire Attorney General.

He was born in Newport, New Hampshire, and grew up in Bradford. He attended private schools and the Hopkinton and Meriden academies. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1841 and commenced practice in Bradford.

Tappan served in the New Hampshire House of Representatives 1853-1855. He was elected as an American Party candidate to the Thirty-fourth Congress and reelected as a Republican to the Thirty-fifth and Thirty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1855 – March 3, 1861). While in Congress, he served as chairman, Committee on Claims (Thirty-sixth Congress). He was not a candidate for renomination in 1860.

During the Civil War, he served as colonel of the 1st New Hampshire Infantry, a three-months regiment raised in 1861 in response to President Abraham Lincoln's call to arms. He mustered out in August 1861.

Tappan died in office as the New Hampshire Attorney General at the age of 69. He is buried in Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Bradford, New Hampshire.

Odds Bodkin

Odds Bodkin (born February 14, 1953), is the pseudonym of an American storyteller, musician, and author who has published a number of spoken and/or musical interpretations of traditional tales, as well as a number of original tales and children's books. "Little Proto's T-Rex Adventure" was awarded the Parents' Choice Gold Award. Odds and his family live in Bradford, New Hampshire.

Bodkin tours both nationally and internationally, appearing at storytelling festivals, schools, universities, theaters and museums. He has performed at the White House and the National Storytelling Festival.

Recent Bodkin projects include The Vanishers: The App that Brings Objects to Life, a story-based Alternative Reality Game (ARG) for museums and outdoor places, and Young Hercules: The Legendary Bully, an empathy-awareness program for middle, high school and college students.

Under the pseudonym "McKenzie Bodkin", Bodkin's original epic poem The Water Mage's Daughter: A Novel of Love, Magic and War in Verse was published as an ebook by Telemachus Press in 2013. Written in iambic tetrameter, the 13,000-line high fantasy novel features hidden verse games and mathematical structures.

Roger Sullivan House

The Roger Sullivan House is a historic house at 168 Walnut Street in Manchester, New Hampshire. Built in 1892, it is the only known example of residential Queen Anne architecture by local architect William M. Butterfield, and is one of the city's finest examples of the style. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2004.

Scouting in Massachusetts

Scouting in Massachusetts includes both Girl Scout and Boy Scout organizations. Both were founded in the 1910s in Massachusetts. With a vigorous history, both organizations actively serve thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.

Theodore Lettvin

Theodore Lettvin (October 29, 1926 – August 24, 2003) was an American concert pianist and conductor. He was one of the four children of Solomon and Fannie Lettvin, two Jewish-Ukrainian immigrants who settled in Chicago. Neurophysiologist and MIT professor Jerome Lettvin was his eldest brother.

Thorkild Jacobsen

Thorkild Peter Rudolph Jacobsen (Danish: [tˢoɐ̯kil ˈjækɒpsn̩]; 7 June 1904 – 2 May 1993) was a renowned historian specializing in Assyriology and Sumerian literature. He was one of the foremost scholars on the ancient Near East.

Walter Scott West

Walter Scott West (March 13, 1872 – September 14, 1943) was a private serving in the United States Marine Corps during the Spanish–American War who received the Medal of Honor for bravery.

Warner River

The Warner River is a 20.3-mile-long (32.7 km) river located in central New Hampshire in the United States. It is a tributary of the Contoocook River, part of the Merrimack River watershed.

The Warner River begins at the outlet of Todd Lake in Bradford, New Hampshire, 300 meters upstream of the confluence of the West Branch. The river flows east, receiving the outlet of Lake Massasecum, and enters the town of Warner. The small river has a long whitewater section in western Warner, passing under the Waterloo Covered Bridge next to an old railroad station, then reaches Interstate 89, after which the river flattens and meanders over gravel bars. A small waterfall at Davisville interrupts the flatwater, which resumes to the river's end, just north of the village of Contoocook, New Hampshire, in the town of Hopkinton.

New Hampshire Route 103 follows the Warner River for most of the river's length.

Places adjacent to Bradford, New Hampshire
Municipalities and communities of Merrimack County, New Hampshire, United States
Other unincorporated

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