Rockingham County is a county in the U.S. state of New Hampshire. As of the 2010 census, the population was 295,223, making it the second-most populous county in New Hampshire. The county seat is Brentwood. Rockingham County constitutes a portion of the Boston-Cambridge-Newton, MA-NH Metropolitan Statistical Area as well as of the greater Boston-Worcester-Providence, MA-RI-NH-CT Combined Statistical Area.
|Rockingham County, New Hampshire|
Rockingham County Courthouse
Location within the U.S. state of New Hampshire
New Hampshire's location within the U.S.
|Named for||Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham|
|• Total||795 sq mi (2,059 km2)|
|• Land||695 sq mi (1,800 km2)|
|• Water||100 sq mi (259 km2), 13%|
|• Density||445/sq mi (172/km2)|
|Congressional districts||1st, 2nd|
|Time zone||Eastern: UTC−5/−4|
The area that today is Rockingham County was first settled by Europeans moving north from the Plymouth Colony in Massachusetts as early as 1623. The government was linked tightly with Massachusetts until New Hampshire became a separate colony in 1679, but counties were not introduced until 1769.
Rockingham was identified in 1769 as one of five original counties for the colony. It is named for Charles Watson-Wentworth, 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, who had been Prime Minister in 1765-1766. The county was organized in 1771, with its county seat at Exeter. In 1844 its area was reduced by the formation of Belknap County to the northwest. In 1997 the county court facilities were moved to Brentwood, a rural town adjacent to Exeter.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 795 square miles (2,060 km2), of which 695 square miles (1,800 km2) is land and 100 square miles (260 km2) (13%) is water. The highest point in Rockingham County is Nottingham Mountain, at 1,340 feet (410 m), in the town of Deerfield. The county contains the entirety of New Hampshire's Atlantic coast, which, at approximately 18 miles (29 km), is the shortest ocean coastline of any state in the nation.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2000, there were 277,359 people, 104,529 households, and 74,320 families residing in the county. The population density was 399 people per square mile (154/km²). There were 113,023 housing units at an average density of 163 per square mile (63/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 96.80% White, 0.58% Black or African American, 0.18% Native American, 1.11% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.38% from other races, and 0.92% from two or more races. 1.19% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 18.1% were of Irish, 14.6% English, 11.8% Italian, 10.5% French, 8.0% French Canadian, 6.0% German and 5.6% American ancestry. 94.3% spoke English, 1.8% French and 1.3% Spanish as their first language.
There were 104,529 households out of which 35.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.50% were married couples living together, 8.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.90% were non-families. 22.00% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.63 and the average family size was 3.11.
In the county, the population was spread out with 26.40% under the age of 18, 6.20% from 18 to 24, 32.80% from 25 to 44, 24.40% from 45 to 64, and 10.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.40 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $58,150, and the median income for a family was $66,345. (These figures had risen to $72,600 and $85,361 respectively, as of a 2007 estimate.) Males had a median income of $45,598 versus $30,741 for females. The per capita income for the county was $26,656. About 3.10% of families and 4.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.00% of those under age 18 and 6.40% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 295,223 people, 115,033 households, and 79,832 families residing in the county. The population density was 425.0 inhabitants per square mile (164.1/km2). There were 126,709 housing units at an average density of 182.4 per square mile (70.4/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 95.5% white, 1.7% Asian, 0.7% black or African American, 0.2% American Indian, 0.6% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 2.1% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 26.9% were Irish, 19.0% were English, 14.8% were Italian, 9.7% were German, 7.3% were French Canadian, 5.6% were Polish, and 3.8% were American.
Of the 115,033 households, 32.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.4% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 30.6% were non-families, and 23.5% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.54 and the average family size was 3.03. The median age was 42.2 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $75,825 and the median income for a family was $90,463. Males had a median income of $61,443 versus $42,478 for females. The per capita income for the county was $35,889. About 3.0% of families and 4.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.9% of those under age 18 and 6.0% of those age 65 or over.
Historically, Rockingham County has had the distinction of being a Republican stronghold, with only two Democratic presidential nominees having captured the county since 1964. However, in recent years, it has become more competitive. Republicans have typically remained dominant at the local level, but communities like Portsmouth and Exeter have been known for their liberal voting patterns.
The executive power of Rockingham County's government is held by three county commissioners, each representing one of the three commissioner districts within the county.
|District 1||Kevin St. James (Vice Chair)||Kingston, NH||Republican|
|District 2||Thomas Tombarello (Clerk)||Sandown, NH||Republican|
|District 3||Kevin Coyle (Chair)||Derry, NH||Republican|
In addition to the County Commission, there are five directly-elected officials: they include County Attorney, Register of Deeds, County Sheriff, Register of Probate, and County Treasurer.
|County Attorney||Patricia Conway (R)|
|Register of Deeds||Cathy Stacey (R)|
|County Sheriff||Chuck Massahos (R)|
|Register of Probate||Ray Tweedie (R)|
|County Treasurer||Scott Priestley (R)|
The legislative branch of Rockingham County is made up of all of the members of the New Hampshire House of Representatives from the county. In total, as of August 2018 there are 90 members from 37 different districts.
The Rockingham County Botanical Garden was a botanical garden located in Brentwood. Strawbery Banke Museum in Portsmouth is a collection of historic buildings from the seventeenth through nineteenth centuries. Canobie Lake Park, located in Salem, is an amusement park that opened in 1902. Also in Salem is Rockingham Park racetrack, which features weekly horse racing and is next to the Mall at Rockingham Park, and America's Stonehenge, which claims to be a pre-Columbian collection of stone structures. Derry was home to poet Robert Frost, who taught at nearby Pinkerton Academy. His home, the Robert Frost Farm, has been preserved as a state park.
Rockingham County is also home to New Hampshire's entire seacoast and features several popular resort towns. Hampton Beach has a boardwalk and Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom. The town of Rye features several undeveloped beaches such as Odiorne Point State Park and contains New Hampshire's portion of the Isles of Shoals. Seabrook contains the Seabrook Greyhound Racing Park and the Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant, the last nuclear plant opened in the United States.
Cohas Brook is a 16.5-mile-long (26.6 km) river located in southern New Hampshire in the United States. It is a tributary of the Merrimack River, part of the Gulf of Maine watershed.
Cohas Brook rises in Auburn, New Hampshire, north of Calef Pond. The brook follows a winding course westward to the Merrimack River in Manchester. In Manchester it picks up the outlet of Massabesic Lake, the water supply for the city. This lower portion was formerly known as Coos River.Much of the brook's course is quite close to intense suburban development, including Interstate routes 93 and 293, the South Willow Street commercial corridor, and the Manchester Airport.Country Pond
Country Pond is a 306-acre (124 ha) water body located in Rockingham County in southern New Hampshire, United States, in the towns of Kingston and Newton. Water from Country Pond flows via the Powwow River to the Merrimack River in Amesbury, Massachusetts.
The lake is classified as a warmwater fishery, with observed species including smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, chain pickerel, brown bullhead, black crappie, white perch, American eel, bluegill, white sucker, and pumpkinseed.Exeter, New Hampshire
Exeter is a town in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 14,306 at the 2010 census and an estimated 15,082 in 2017. Exeter was the county seat until 1997, when county offices were moved to neighboring Brentwood. Home to the Phillips Exeter Academy, a private university-preparatory school, Exeter is situated where the Exeter River feeds the tidal Squamscott River.
The urban portion of the town, where 9,242 people resided at the 2010 census, is defined by the U. S. Census Bureau as the Exeter census-designated place.
Exeter is named after the historic city in Devon, England.Great Pond (New Hampshire)
Great Pond is a 268-acre (1.08 km2) water body located in Rockingham County in southeastern New Hampshire in the United States. The lake lies near the center of the town of Kingston. Kingston State Park, a small preserve with a swimming beach, occupies the northeastern end of the lake, near the town center. The lake is located along the Powwow River, a tributary of the Merrimack River.
The lake is classified as a warmwater fishery, with observed species including smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, chain pickerel, white perch, black crappie, bluegill, yellow perch, and pumpkinseed.Hampstead, New Hampshire
Hampstead is a town in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 8,523 at the 2010 census. Hampstead, which includes the village of East Hampstead, is home to a portion of the Rockingham Recreational Trail.Island Pond (Rockingham County, New Hampshire)
Island Pond (sometimes referred to locally as Big Island Pond) is a 532-acre (215 ha) water body located in Rockingham County in southern New Hampshire, in the towns of Derry, Hampstead and Atkinson. The pond is near the head of the Spicket River watershed, which feeds the Merrimack River in Lawrence, Massachusetts. The pond was formed from the merger of two smaller bodies of water in 1878, when a dam raised the water level by 8.5 feet.The pond is named for Governor's Island, a 200-acre (80 ha) island that lies within it. The island in turn is named for Benning Wentworth, colonial governor of New Hampshire, who built a summer residence on the north end of the island. A smaller island is named after the Native American chief Escumbuit.The lake is classified as a cold and warmwater fishery and contains largemouth and smallmouth bass, brook trout, rainbow trout, brown trout, chain pickerel, horned pout, white perch, black crappie, and bluegill.Kingston, New Hampshire
Kingston is a town in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The population at the 2010 census was 6,025.Little River (Brentwood, New Hampshire)
The Little River is a 7.3 mile long (11.7 km) river in the towns of Kingston and Brentwood in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, in the United States. It is a tributary of the Exeter River, part of the Great Bay/Piscataqua River watershed in the New Hampshire Seacoast region. The river should not be confused with the Little River of Exeter, New Hampshire, another tributary of the Exeter River less than three miles away.
The Little River rises in the northwestern part of Kingston, New Hampshire, and follows a winding course generally northeast through flat or slightly hilly terrain. The river turns north as it enters Brentwood and reaches the Exeter River east of Brentwood's town center.Little River (Exeter, New Hampshire)
The Little River is a 7.2 mile long (11.6 km) river largely in the town of Exeter in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, in the United States. It is a tributary of the Exeter River, part of the Great Bay/Piscataqua River watershed in the New Hampshire Seacoast region. The river should not be confused with the Little River of Brentwood and Kingston, another Exeter River tributary less than three miles to the west.
The Little River rises in the northeastern corner of Brentwood, New Hampshire, and flows east, quickly entering the town limits of Exeter. The river flows southeast through wetlands and past low hills, passing just west of the downtown part of Exeter. The river flows into the Exeter River at the southern edge of the campus of Phillips Exeter Academy.Little River (Merrimack River tributary)
The Little River is a 12.9-mile-long (20.8 km) river located in New Hampshire and Massachusetts in the United States. It is a tributary of the Merrimack River, part of the Gulf of Maine watershed.
The Little River rises in Kingston, New Hampshire, flows south through Plaistow, and enters the city of Haverhill, Massachusetts, where it joins the Merrimack River. Most of the Little River's course is marked by suburban and urban development.Londonderry, New Hampshire
Londonderry is a town in western Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The town sits between Manchester and Derry, the largest and fourth-largest communities in the state. The population was 24,129 at the 2010 census and an estimated 26,126 in 2017. Londonderry is known for its apple orchards and is home to the headquarters of Stonyfield Farm and part of Manchester-Boston Regional Airport.
The more densely settled portion of town, where 11,037 people resided at the 2010 census, is defined as the Londonderry census-designated place (CDP) and roughly occupies the southeastern and southern parts of town, around New Hampshire Route 102.National Register of Historic Places listings in Rockingham County, New Hampshire
This is a list of the National Register of Historic Places listings in Rockingham County, New Hampshire.
This is intended to be a complete list of the properties and districts on the National Register of Historic Places in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. Latitude and longitude coordinates are provided for many National Register properties and districts; these locations may be seen together in a map.There are 127 properties and districts listed on the National Register in the county, including 12 National Historic Landmarks.
This National Park Service list is complete through NPS recent listings posted June 7, 2019.Piscataqua River
The Piscataqua River () is a 12-mile-long (19 km) tidal river forming the boundary of the U.S. states of New Hampshire and Maine from its origin at the confluence of the Salmon Falls River and Cocheco River. The drainage basin of the river is approximately 1,495 square miles (3,870 km2), including the subwatersheds of the Great Works River and the five rivers flowing into Great Bay: the Bellamy, Oyster, Lamprey, Squamscott, and Winnicut.
The river runs southeastward, with New Hampshire to the south and west and Maine to the north and east, and empties into the Gulf of Maine east of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The last 6 miles (10 km) before the sea are known as Portsmouth Harbor and have a tidal current of around 4 knots (7.4 km/h; 4.6 mph). The cities/towns of Portsmouth, New Castle, Newington, Kittery and Eliot have developed around the harbor.Pleasant Lake (Deerfield, New Hampshire)
Pleasant Lake is a 479-acre (1.94 km2) lake located in Rockingham County in central New Hampshire, United States, in the town of Deerfield. The eastern shore of the lake forms the boundary between Deerfield and the town of Northwood. Water from Pleasant Lake flows north to Northwood Lake, then west via the Little Suncook River to the Suncook River, a tributary of the Merrimack River.
The lake is classified as a cold- and warmwater fishery, with observed species including brown trout, rainbow trout, smallmouth and largemouth bass, chain pickerel, brown bullhead, and white perch.Powwow Pond
Powwow Pond is a 348-acre (1.41 km2) water body in Rockingham County in southeastern New Hampshire, United States. The outlet of the pond is located in the town of East Kingston, but most of the lake lies in the town of Kingston. The Powwow River, the outlet of the pond, flows to the Merrimack River in Amesbury, Massachusetts.
The lake is classified as a warmwater fishery, with observed species including smallmouth and largemouth bass, chain pickerel, horned pout, and black crappie.Raymond, New Hampshire
Raymond is a town in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 10,138 at the 2010 census, and the estimated population in 2017 was 10,376. Part of Pawtuckaway State Park is in the north.
The central village in town, where 2,855 people resided at the 2010 census, is defined as the Raymond census-designated place (CDP), and is located along the Lamprey River near New Hampshire Route 27.South Hampton, New Hampshire
South Hampton is a town in Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 814 at the 2010 census. South Hampton is home to Cowden State Forest and Powwow River State Forest.Star Speedway
Star Speedway is located in Epping, New Hampshire. It hosts a tour-type modified division under the management of the Webber family. The track was closed for most of the 2010 season due to issues between track manager and promoter Robert MacArthur and the town of Epping.Tuxbury Pond
Tuxbury Pond is a lake which straddles the Massachusetts-New Hampshire border, abutting the towns of Amesbury, Massachusetts and South Hampton, New Hampshire. It is located along the Powwow River. It has two islands in the middle, and a large summer camp resort lies along the Massachusetts shore.
Places adjacent to Rockingham County, New Hampshire
Municipalities and communities of Rockingham County, New Hampshire, United States
|Gulf of Maine|
|Long Island Sound|