Milford, New Hampshire

Milford is a town in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, United States, on the Souhegan River. The population was 15,115 at the 2010 census.[1] It is the retail and manufacturing center of a six-town area known informally as the Souhegan Valley.

The town center of Milford, where 8,835 people resided at the 2010 census,[1] is defined as the Milford census-designated place (CDP), and is located at the junction of New Hampshire routes 13 and 101A.

Milford, New Hampshire
The center oval and town hall
The center oval and town hall
Official seal of Milford, New Hampshire

Location in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire
Coordinates: 42°50′07″N 71°38′56″W / 42.83528°N 71.64889°WCoordinates: 42°50′07″N 71°38′56″W / 42.83528°N 71.64889°W
CountryUnited States
StateNew Hampshire
 • Board of SelectmenKevin Federico, Chair
Gary Daniels
Mike Putnam
Laura Dudziak
Paul Dargie
 • Town AdministratorMark Bender
 • Total25.3 sq mi (65.5 km2)
 • Land25.2 sq mi (65.3 km2)
 • Water0.1 sq mi (0.2 km2)  0.24%
259 ft (79 m)
 • Total15,115
 • Density600/sq mi (230/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s)603
FIPS code33-48020
GNIS feature ID0873666


Milford, N.H. (2675825826)
Lithograph of Milford from 1886 by L.R. Burleigh with list of landmarks

Milford separated from neighboring Amherst in 1794. Like most towns named Milford in the United States, its name comes from the fact that it grew around a mill built on a ford—in this case on the Souhegan River.[2]

Milford was once home to numerous granite quarries, which produced a stone that was used, among other things, to make the pillars for the U.S. Treasury in Washington, D.C.—pillars that can be seen on the back of the American $10 bill,[3] although it is unclear whether that will remain after the bill is redesigned.[4] Its nickname remains "The Granite Town", although only one small quarry is in operation as of 2017.

Like many New England riverside towns, Milford developed several thriving textile mills in the 19th century. That industry left New England by World War II, but Milford remains the commercial and retail center for surrounding towns. Major employers included casting company Hitchiner Manufacturing Co.,[5] a metal cable manufacturer, Hendrix Wire and Cable Inc.,[6] and a contract manufacturing solutions company, Cirtronics Corporation.[7] In 2018, local firm Alene Candles became one of the first companies in the state to implement a "conscious leadership" program in a manufacturing production setting.[8]

Milford is home to the Milford State Fish Hatchery.[9] The town also holds the Souhegan Valley Boys & Girls Club, built on the former home of the now-bankrupt private theater American Stage Festival.

Milford was a stop on the Underground Railroad for escaped slaves. It was also the home of Harriet E. Wilson, who published the semi-autobiographical novel Our Nig: Or, Sketches in the Life of a Free Black in 1859, making it the first novel by an African-American woman published in the country.

Officially designated Union Square, the Milford Oval is neither square nor oval in shape, but rather triangular. The "square" name in American parlance denotes a town common irrespective of geometry, and the "oval" name dates from the 19th century, when it was oval in shape. The Oval is the town center, with the Pillsbury Bandstand as its centerpiece and the Souhegan River as backdrop. The Oval is formed by a modified traffic rotary in which State Highways 13 and 101A intersect, with northbound 13 and eastbound 101A passing straight through and crossing each other at a right angle with a stop sign for traffic on Route 13. For many years, the Oval's traffic flow was treated as a series of three individual intersections of three one-way streets, resulting in the unusual arrangement whereby vehicles entering the Oval had right-of-way over vehicles turning left to continue through the Oval. This treatment was reversed in the 1980s to conform with traffic rotary norms whereby vehicles already in the Oval have right-of-way over vehicles entering the Oval.

Downtown Milford park

Centennial Park

MilfordNH WilliamPeabodyHouse

William Peabody House

Union Square, Milford, NH

Union Square c. 1905

Milford NH Bandstand

Union Square in 2006

Stone Bridge, Milford, NH

Stone Bridge c. 1905

Elm Street, Milford, NH

Elm Street c. 1915

High School, Milford, NH

Bales High School c. 1905


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 25.3 square miles (66 km2), of which 25.2 sq mi (65 km2) is land and 0.1 sq mi (0.26 km2) is water, comprising 0.24% of the town. Milford is drained by the Souhegan River. The town's highest point is near its western border, on the summit of Boynton Hill, at 814 feet (248 m) above sea level.

Milford is bordered by Lyndeborough and Mont Vernon to the north, Amherst to the east, Hollis to the southeast, Brookline to the south, Mason to the southwest, and Wilton to the west.


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 201715,449[10]2.2%
U.S. Decennial Census[11]

As of the census of 2010, there were 15,115 people, 5,929 households, and 4,004 families residing in the town. There were 6,295 housing units, of which 366, or 5.8%, were vacant. The racial makeup of the town was 94.8% white, 1.3% African American, 0.2% Native American, 1.3% Asian, 0.01% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, 0.6% some other race, and 1.7% from two or more races. 2.2% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.[12]

Of the 5,929 households, 35.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.0% were headed by married couples living together, 10.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.5% were non-families. 25.3% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.4% were someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53, and the average family size was 3.04.[12]

In the town, 25.0% of the population were under the age of 18, 7.8% were from 18 to 24, 27.0% from 25 to 44, 28.3% from 45 to 64, and 11.9% were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.0 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.3 males.[12]

For the period 2011-2015, the estimated median annual income for a household was $64,576, and the median income for a family was $80,241. Male full-time workers had a median income of $55,313 versus $38,792 for females. The per capita income for the town was $32,918. 5.8% of the population and 3.7% of families were below the poverty line. 8.2% of the population under the age of 18 and 2.7% of those 65 or older were living in poverty.[13]


The town is known for its "Pumpkin Festival" which is normally held in early October.[14] It is held over a three-day weekend (Friday-Sunday) and attracts more than 35,000 people. The festival has many attractions including food vendors, music stages, craft fair, carved pumpkin lighting, a haunted trail, a beer and wine tasting and a fireworks display around the Oval.

Notable people

  • Abby Hutchinson Patton, 19th-century singer and poet
  • Harriet E. Wilson, considered the first female African-American novelist, as well as the first African American of any gender to publish a novel on the North American continent.


  1. ^ a b United States Census Bureau, American FactFinder, 2010 Census figures. Retrieved March 23, 2011.
  2. ^ Coolidge, Austin J.; John B. Mansfield (1859). A History and Description of New England. Boston, Massachusetts. p. 580.
  3. ^ "Milford granite used for treasury building column" Milford Cabinet April 26, 2012
  4. ^ Milford Cabinet: "Not carved in stone" Feb. 2, 2017
  5. ^ Cote, Mike. "Mike Cote's Business Editor's Notebook: Bringing high-end training to the workplace". Union Leader. Retrieved 2018-07-17.
  6. ^ Seiler, Paul Steven (2013). "Hendrix Covered Conductor Manual" (PDF). Western Power. p. 7.
  7. ^ Veasey, Michelle (2017-05-10). "Cirtronics Wins Award for Corporate Social Responsibility Practices". MassTLC - Mass Technology Leadership Council. Retrieved 2018-07-17.
  8. ^ Houghton, Kimberly (July 15, 2018). "Milford candle company embraces conscious leadership". Union Leader. Retrieved 2018-07-17.
  9. ^ "New Hampshire Wildlife Management Areas". New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. Retrieved 2018-07-17.
  10. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2017 (PEPANNRES): Minor Civil Divisions – New Hampshire". Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  11. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2016.
  12. ^ a b c "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (DP-1): Milford town, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  13. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics: 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP03): Milford town, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  14. ^ "Milford Pumpkin Festival 2015". Milford Pumpkin Festival.

External links

Albert E. Pillsbury

Albert Enoch Pillsbury (August 19, 1849 – December 23, 1930) was a Boston lawyer who served in both houses of the Massachusetts legislature, president of the Massachusetts State Senate, and as the Attorney General of Massachusetts from 1891 to 1894. In addition to being a member of the National Negro Committee, the precursor to the NAACP, Pillsbury was a member of the Boston Committee to Advance the Cause of the Negro, which in 1911 became a branch of the NAACP. It was Pillsbury who drafted the bylaws of the NAACP. In 1913, he resigned his membership in the American Bar Association when that organization rejected the membership of William H. Lewis, a black assistant U.S. attorney and supporter of Booker T. Washington. In 1913, Pillsbury was awarded an honorary LL.D. degree from Howard University. It was there he delivered his speech illuminating, defending and praising President Lincoln's role in ending slavery that became a small book, Lincoln and Slavery.

Beaver Brook Association

The Beaver Brook Association is a non-profit nature center and 2,187-acre (885 ha) conservation area in Hollis, Brookline, and Milford, New Hampshire, United States. It takes its name from Beaver Brook, a tributary of the Nissitissit River and Nashua River.

Benjamin Orr (Massachusetts politician)

Benjamin Orr (December 1, 1772 – September 3, 1828) was a member of the United States House of Representatives from Massachusetts.

Orr was born in Bedford, New Hampshire, on December 1, 1772. He was self-educated and apprenticed as a carpenter. He attended Fryeburg Academy, taught school at Concord and New Milford, New Hampshire; and graduated from Dartmouth College in 1798. He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1801 and commenced the practice of law in Brunswick, Maine (then a part of Massachusetts).

Orr moved to Topsham, Maine, in 1801 and continued the practice of law; was overseer of Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine, and served as trustee from 1814 to 1828 and as treasurer in 1815 and 1816.

Orr was elected as a Federalist to the Fifteenth Congress (March 4, 1817 – March 3, 1819) but was not a candidate for renomination in 1818.

He resumed the practice of law in Topsham and, in 1822, returned to Brunswick to continue the practice of law.

He died in Brunswick, on September 3, 1828, and he was interred in Pine Grove Cemetery.

Charles Donahue

Charles Henry Donahue (December 7, 1877–November 4, 1952) was a Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court from March 17, 1932 to April 26, 1944. He was appointed by Governor Joseph B. Ely.

Born in Milford, New Hampshire to John F. and Bridget Murphy Donahue, he attended the local schools and graduated as valedictorian from Milford High School. He graduated third in his class from Dartmouth College in 1899, and then attended Boston University Law School, where he "completed the three-year course in two years and graduated in 1901".

On October 7, 1924, Governor Channing H. Cox appointed him to the Superior Court, and on March 17, 1932, Governor Ely elevated him to the position of Associate Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court. He served in this command until April 24, 1944, at which time he presented to the Governor in writing a request that he be retired from his judicial office, and on April 26, 1944, the late Justice Charles Henry Donahue, in accordance with such request, was retired by the Governor with the consent of the Executive Council.

David A. Secombe

David Adam Secombe (May 25, 1827 – March 25, 1892) was a lawyer and Republican politician in Minnesota. He served as mayor of St. Anthony, as a delegate at the state's constitutional convention and in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

Fritz Wetherbee

Fred "Fritz" Wetherbee (born July 3, 1936) is a New Hampshire writer and television host. Fritz has been honored with five Emmy Awards.

He was born July 3, 1936, and named for his grandfather Fred Minot Wetherbee II. For 10 years (1975–84) he was news director and general manager of radio stations WSCV/WSLE-FM in Peterborough. From 1985 to 1995 he was the host of New Hampshire Crossroads on Public Television. He currently has his own segment on New Hampshire Chronicle.

George A. Ramsdell

George Allen Ramsdell (March 11, 1834 – November 16, 1900) was an American lawyer, businessman, and Republican politician from Nashua, New Hampshire. He served as Governor of New Hampshire from 1897 to 1899.

George Luke Smith

George Luke Smith (December 11, 1837 – July 9, 1884) was from 1873 to 1875 a U.S. Representative for Louisiana's 4th congressional district, which encompasses the state's third largest city, Shreveport, Louisiana.

Born in New Boston in Hillsborough County in southern New Hampshire, Smith completed preparatory studies and attended Union College in Schenectady, New York.

During the American Civil War, he served in the Union Army. At the close of the war, he relocated to Shreveport to engage in mercantile pursuits. He served from 1870 to 1872 as a member of the Louisiana House of Representatives during Reconstruction. He was the proprietor of Shreveport Southwestern Telegram and president of the Shreveport Savings Bank & Trust Company.

Smith was elected as a Republican to the Forty-third Congress to fill the vacancy created by the death of Representative-elect Samuel Peters and served from November 24, 1873, until March 3, 1875. Considered a Carpetbagger, Smith was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1874 to the Forty-fourth Congress and was succeeded by the Democrat William M. Levy.

Thereafter, Smith was appointed collector of customs at the port of New Orleans by U.S. President Rutherford B. Hayes, a position that he held from May 4, 1878, to February 20, 1879.

He moved to Hot Springs, Hot Springs, Arkansas, to engage in the real estate business until his death there.

He is interred at the West Street Cemetery in Milford, New Hampshire.

Smith was the last Republican to hold the 4th district House seat in Louisiana until 1988, when Jim McCrery won a special election for the position to succeed Buddy Roemer who was elected governor of Louisiana the preceding year.

Harriet E. Wilson

For the Regency courtesan, see Harriette Wilson.Harriet E. Wilson (March 15, 1825 – June 28, 1900) was an African-American novelist. She was the first African American of any gender to publish a novel on the North American continent. Her novel Our Nig, or Sketches from the Life of a Free Black was published anonymously in 1859 in Boston, Massachusetts, and was not widely known. The novel was discovered in 1982 by the scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr., who documented it as the first African-American novel published in the United States.

Born a free person of color (free Negro) in New Hampshire, Wilson was orphaned when young and bound until the age of 18 as an indentured servant. She struggled to make a living after that, marrying twice; her only son George died at the age of seven in the poor house, where she had placed him while trying to survive as a widow. She wrote one novel. Wilson later was associated with the Spiritualist church, was paid on the public lecture circuit for her lectures about her life, and worked as a housekeeper in a boarding house.

Hillsborough Mills

The Hillsborough Mills are a historic textile manufacturing complex at 37 Wilton Road in western Milford, New Hampshire, near its town line with Wilton. The oldest buildings of the brick mill complex were built in 1866 as a carpet-making operation. This business failed in 1874, but the complex was acquired by other textile interests, and eventual saw success producing carpet yarns, and blankets for horses and bedding. The mills were closed in 1970, and have since been adapted for other uses. The complex was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2014.

John McLane

John McLane (February 27, 1852 – April 13, 1911) was a furniture maker and politician from Milford, New Hampshire. He was Governor of New Hampshire from 1905 to 1907.

Linda Kasabian

Linda Darlene Kasabian (born Drouin; June 21, 1949) is a former member of Charles Manson's "Family". She was the key witness in District Attorney Vincent Bugliosi's prosecution of Manson and his followers for the Tate-LaBianca murders.

Mark F. Burns

Mark F. Burns (May 24, 1841 – January 16, 1898) was an American politician who served on the Board of Aldermen, as a member and President of the Common Council, and as the sixth Mayor, of Somerville, Massachusetts.

Milford High School (New Hampshire)

Milford High School & Applied Technology Center is a grade 9-12 high school in the Milford School District located in Milford, New Hampshire.

Morgan Andrews

Morgan Andrews (born March 25, 1995) is an American soccer player. She currently plays for the Reign FC and previously played for the Boston Breakers. Andrews has represented the United States on numerous national teams from the under-15 to the under-23 levels. She was twice named the Gatorade National High School Athlete of the Year in 2012 and 2013 and helped lead the USC Trojans to their second-ever NCAA College Cup title in 2016.

New Milford, New Hampshire

New Milford is a fictional town in New Hampshire, United States. It was the subject of a hoax article published in 2011 by The White Pine Series of Architectural Monographs, which described the community as being a flourishing Victorian-era village in the White Mountains during the early 20th century. According to the article, New Milford had been incorporated in 1852 by working-class quarry workers, had enjoyed prosperity for many years, and then declined in the early 20th century, following a succession of unfortunate disasters at the quarry site, the decline of rail-based tourism, the Great Depression, and the outbreak of World Wars. Research by the Milford, New Hampshire, Historical Society and the New Hampshire State Library following the publication of the article led to the discovery that the article was fictitious.

Robert Burns Memorial (Barre)

The Robert Burns Memorial is a granite monument located in downtown Barre, Vermont. It was erected by Barre's Scottish immigrants in 1899 to commemorate the centenary of the death of Scottish poet Robert Burns.

The statue was conceived and modeled by J. Massey Rhind. James B. King of Milford, New Hampshire modeled the four panels. Sam Novelli carved the statue at the Barclay Brothers' granite firm. Elia Corti, an Italian, carved the panels.


SoftSide Magazine is a defunct computer magazine, begun in October 1978 by Roger Robitaille and published by SoftSide Publications of Milford, New Hampshire.

The Telegraph (Nashua)

The Telegraph, for most of its existence known as the Nashua Telegraph, is a daily newspaper in Nashua, New Hampshire. It was founded as the Nashua Daily Telegraph in 1869, although a weekly version dates back to 1832. As of 2005 it was the second-largest newspaper in the state, with a circulation of about 27,000 daily, and 34,000 on Sunday.

After being family-owned for a century, The Telegraph was bought in the 1980s by Independent Publications of Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, which owned several smaller daily and weekly newspapers around the United States as well as some other businesses. In 2005, the paper's owner bought the Cabinet Press, publisher of weekly newspapers based in nearby Milford, New Hampshire. In April 2013, it was bought by Ogden Newspapers of Wheeling, West Virginia.

Places adjacent to Milford, New Hampshire
Municipalities and communities of Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, United States
Other villages
Major cities
Cities and towns
Cities and towns
Cities and towns

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