Area Information

Coos County, NH

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Towns Located in Coos County, NH


(pronounced "CO-ahss" with two syllables)

The act establishing "The County of Cooss" was approved December 24, 1803. It contained the original towns of Dalton, Whitefield, Bretton Woods, Bartlett, Adams, Chatham, Shelburne Addition, Durand, Kilkenny, Jefferson, Lancaster, Millsfield, Northumberland, Stratford, Wales' Gore, Cockburne, Colebrook, Stewartstown, Piercy, Paulsburg, Mainsborough, Dummer, Errol, Cambridge and Success, with a population of about 3,000 in 1803.

Coos was taken from Grafton County, one of the five original counties of the State--Rockingham, Strafford, Hillsborough, Cheshire, Grafton--and comprises all New Hampshire north of the present counties of Grafton and Carroll. Its western boundary is the western bank of the Connecticut river, and it extends from latitude 48 degree 58 minutes to the extreme north part of the State, being seventy-six miles in length, with a mean width of about twenty miles. It contains about one million acres of land. The distance by traveled highway from the north line of Grafton county at Littleton to the Canada line at West Stewartstown is about sixty-two miles. It is bounded north and northwest by Canada, east by Maine, south by Carroll and Grafton counties, and west by Vermont.

The census of 1880 gave the total population of this county as 18,850, with the town of Lancaster having the largest population within that county of 2,721 (Berlin at that time had 1,144 citizens). As of 2000, the population is 33,111. On June 18, 1805, Nash and Sawyer's Location was annexed to Coos county, and January 5, 1853, Bartlett, Jackson (Adams), and Hart's Location were annexed to Carroll county. Not long after the formation of Coos county, Chatham was annexed to Strafford county, and upon the erection of Carroll county, Chatham was included in that county.The name "Coos" is derived from the Abenaki dialect--the word "Cohos," or "Coo-ash" signifying 'pines." The tribe occupying this region was known as the 'Coo-ash-aukes,' or 'dwellers in the pine tree country," 

The county seat of Coos County is Lancaster NH.

  • There are MANY covered bridges in Coos County, including:
    • Columbia-Lemington - Built in 1912, this bridge is the northernmost covered bridge spanning the Connecticut River between New Hampshire and Vermont. Located west of New Hampshire State Route 135.
    • Lancaster-Lunenburg - 266 foot bridge built in 1911. Crosses Connecticut River and joins New Hampshire and Vermont. This bridge is located west of New Hampshire State Route 135, 5 miles west of Lancaster Village.
    • Lancaster-Mechanic Street - Built in 1862 and crosses the Israel River. Located east of the junction of U.S. Routes 2 and 3 in Lancaster Village.
    • Northumberland-Groveton - This foot traffic only bridge was built in 1852. It crosses the Upper Ammonoosuc River and spans 126 feet. Located east of U.S. Route 3.
    • Pittsburg-Clarksville - Built in 1876, crosses the Connecticut River. This 88'-6" bridge is located South of U.S. Route 3, one mile west of Pittsburg Village.
    • Pittsburg-Happy Corner - This 60 foot bridge spans the Perry Stream and is located 1 mile south of U.S. Route 3, 6 miles northeast of Pittsburg Village. One of the oldest bridges in northern New Hampshire.
    • Pittsburg-River Road - This bridge also crosses the Perry Stream and is 50 feet long. Located south of U.S. Routes 3 and 51, 2 miles northeast of Pittsburg Village.
    • Stark-Stark - This 134 foot bridge crosses the Upper Ammonoosuc River located northwest of New Hampshire State Route 110 at Stark Village.

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