The town of Hanover, New Hampshire, is home to Dartmouth College, which was founded in 1769 and is one of the oldest and most prestigious colleges in the United States.
Strafford County, located in eastern New Hampshire, has a rich and vibrant history dating back to the colonial era. The area was initially inhabited by the indigenous Abenaki tribe, who were gradually displaced by European settlers in the 17th century. The county itself was established in 1771 and was named after Thomas Wentworth, 1st Earl of Strafford.

During the American Revolution, Strafford County played a significant role in the struggle for independence. Residents of the county, like many New Englanders, were heavily involved in the colonial cause and fought in battles such as the Battle of Bunker Hill and the Battle of Bennington. The county also saw its fair share of loyalist activity, with some residents remaining loyal to the British Crown throughout the conflict.

In the 19th century, Strafford County experienced rapid industrialization and economic growth. The textile industry became a dominant force, with numerous mills and factories sprouting up along the Cocheco River, which runs through the central part of the county. These mills played a vital role in shaping the county's economy and attracting immigrants from various parts of Europe.

In more recent times, Strafford County has evolved into a bustling center for education and innovation. It is home to the University of New Hampshire, one of the state's flagship institutions, which has contributed significantly to the growth of the county. Strafford County also boasts a thriving arts and culture scene, with various galleries, theaters, and music venues attracting residents and visitors alike. Today, the county continues to embrace its historical roots while embracing the challenges and opportunities of the modern era.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Strafford County, New Hampshire.

  • 1631 - The area that is now Strafford County is first explored by European settlers.
  • 1643 - Dover, the first permanent settlement in the county, is established by settlers from England.
  • 1680 - The town of Durham is settled as part of the Dover Township.
  • 1771 - Strafford County is established as one of the five original counties of New Hampshire.
  • 1823 - The county seat is moved from Dover to Strafford.
  • 1840 - The Cocheco Manufacturing Company is founded, leading to the industrialization of the county.
  • 1872 - The county seat is moved once again, this time to the newly established city of Dover.
  • 1890 - Goodwin Park, the first public park in Dover, is opened.
  • 1950 - The Strafford County Courthouse is built in Dover, replacing the previous courthouse.
  • 2009 - The outlying towns of Strafford County form a regional planning commission, promoting collaboration and development in the county.