1. Live Free or Die
New Hampshire has the best, most badass, state motto in the nation. Hands down.
2. The Old Man in the Mountain
For hundreds of years, the Old Man jutted out of the cliffs of Cannon Mountain, offering wisdom and reflection for all who passed by. When he fell to his death in 2003, the entire state mourned the loss of its mascot. He has not been replaced on state road signs or New Hampshire paraphernalia. That’s loyalty.
3. First Snowmobile
From Ossipee, no less!
4. No Sales or Income Tax
Money, money, money.
5. Home of the First Free Public Library in the U.S.
The Peterborough Town Library in New Hampshire was founded at a town meeting on April 9, 1833. It was the first free public library in the country. The Boston Public Library often gets credit for this supreme title, but it was actually officially established 19 years later.
PSA: Know your local library, kids!
6. First Ski Club in the U.S.
The Nansen Ski Club, the first ski club in the United States, was formed in 1882 in Berlin, New Hampshire. Bode Miller became the pride and joy of New Hampshire ski fanatics many moons later.
7. Home of the First Alarm Clock
In 1787, Levi Hutchins of Concord, N.H., invented the first alarm clock. It only rang at 4 a.m., the time he woke up every day.
Alarm clocks: Helping you get your ass out of bed since 1787.
8. Home of Alan Shepard
Shepard grew up in Derry, N.H., and became the first American to go into space in 1961.
“I must admit, maybe I am a piece of history after all.” —Alan Shepard
9. Screw the Spice Girls. Girl Power Started in the Granite State
On Dec. 30, 1828, 400 female workers walked out of the Dover Cotton factory because of poor wages and working conditions. It was the first women’s strike in the U.S.
10. First Colony to Declare its Independence From England
Of the thirteen original colonies, New Hampshire was the first to declare its independence from England — a full six months before the Declaration of Independence was signed.
11. Home of Robert Frost
Frost (1874-1963) was a poet who strung words together so beautifully. Like the ones below.
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.