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Bedford, New Hampshire

Bedford, New Hampshire
Town Hall
Town Hall
Official seal of Bedford, New Hampshire
Location in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire
Location in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire
Country United States
State New Hampshire
County Hillsborough
Incorporated 1750
 • Town Council Jim Scanlon, Chair
Kelleigh Domaingue
Chris Bandazian
Jim Aguiar
Bill Duschatko
John Schneller
Melissa Stevens
 • Town Manager Rick Sawyer (Acting)
 • Total 33.1 sq mi (85.8 km2)
 • Land 32.8 sq mi (85.0 km2)
 • Water 0.3 sq mi (0.7 km2)  0.85%
Elevation 308 ft (94 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 21,203
 • Density 640/sq mi (250/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 03110
Area code(s) 603
FIPS code 33-04500
GNIS feature ID 0873541
Website .us.nh.bedford.ciwww

Bedford is a town in Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 21,203 at the 2010 census.[1] Bedford is a suburb of Manchester, the largest city in the state.


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
  • Demographics 3
  • Politics 4
  • Education 5
  • Notable people 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8
    • Neighboring cities and towns 8.1


In 1733, Massachusetts established Bedford as "Narragansett, No. 5" for the benefit of soldiers who fought against the Narragansett Indians in Rhode Island.[2] The area was also known as "Souhegan East". The settlement was incorporated as Bedford in 1750,[3] and was named for Lord Russell, the Fourth Duke of Bedford.[4] Lord Russell was the Secretary of State for the Southern Department from 1748-1751 and a close friend of Governor Benning Wentworth, whose first wife, Diana Spencer, was cousin to the Duke of Marlborough.[5]

The first settlers in Bedford were Robert and James Walker III. A monument dated 1737 stands on what is now known as Station Road (adjacent to Hawthorne Drive), marking the first settlement. Bedford's first moderator was Mayor John Goffe, son of Colonel John Goffe, for whom Goffstown was named.

In 1874, Bedford was served by Concord Railroad, and service by the Manchester and Ashburnham Railroad was being planned.[6]

Like much of southeastern New Hampshire, Bedford has grown rapidly over the last fifty years. The 2000 population of 18,274 was over eight times the population in 1950 of 2,176. Every decade has had a substantial rate of growth, ranging from 33 percent between 1980-1990 to a 67 percent increase between 1950-60. The 2005 population estimate by the New Hampshire Office of Energy and Planning was 20,738 residents,[7] which ranked 13th among New Hampshire's incorporated cities and towns.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 33.1 square miles (86 km2), of which 32.8 sq mi (85 km2) is land and 0.3 sq mi (0.78 km2) is water, comprising 0.85% of the town. The largest body of water other than the Merrimack River is Sebbins Pond, which is connected to smaller, neighboring bodies of water by Sebbins Brook. Bedford is bordered by the town of Goffstown and the city of Manchester to the north, by Manchester to the east across the Merrimack River, by the town of Merrimack to the south, and by the towns of Amherst and New Boston to the west.

A rock formation called Pulpit Rock (originally the Devil's Pulpit) is located in the northwest part of the town on New Boston Road and is the feature of the town-owned Pulpit Rock Conservation Area. The highest point in Bedford is Holbrook Hill, at 845 feet (258 m) above sea level, located in the extreme northwest corner of town. Bedford lies fully within the Merrimack River watershed.[8]


As of the census of 2010, there were 21,203 people, 7,364 households, and 5,834 families residing in the town. The population density was 646.4 people per square mile (249.4/km²). There were 7,634 housing units at an average density of 232.7 per square mile (89.8/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 94.5% White, 0.6% African American, 0.1% Native American, 2.9% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.4% from some other race, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.7% of the population.

There were 7,364 households out of which 40.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 69.8% were headed by married couples living together, 6.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 20.8% were non-families. 16.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.6% were someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.19.

In the town the population was spread out with 28.6% under the age of 18, 4.7% from 18 to 24, 21.4% from 25 to 44, 31.7% from 45 to 64, and 13.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42.3 years. For every 100 females there were 95.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.1 males.[1]

For the period 2006-2010, the median income for a household in the town was $116,299 (in 2010 dollars), and the median income for a family was $127,589. Full-time male workers had median earnings of $99,366 versus $53,286 for females. The per capita income for the town was $50,952. About 2.7% of families and 3.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.2% of those under age 18 and 1.0% of those age 65 or over.[9] Bedford had the fifth highest average personal income in the state between 2006 and 2010.[10]


Politically, Bedford votes solidly Republican, not having elected a Democrat to the state legislature since 1932.


There are six schools in Bedford: Memorial, Peter Woodbury and Riddle Brook are neighborhood schools and accommodate grades K through 4. McKelvie Intermediate School accommodates grades 5 and 6. In 2007, Lurgio Middle School (grades 7 and 8) and Bedford High School (grades 9 through 12) opened.

Lurgio Middle School and Bedford High School comprise one 300,000 sq ft (28,000 m2) building. This was done to support economies of scale (shared kitchen, auditorium, security), but they operate as separate schools with different entrances, bus schedules, start times and end times. Additionally, key-controlled access is required to move between schools.

A small number of athletic fields on the campus of Saint Anselm College are located in Bedford.

Notable people


  1. ^ a b "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data, Bedford town, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire (DP-1)". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-11-27. 
  2. ^ "Bedford". Statistics and Gazetteer of New-Hampshire, 1875. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Bedford, New Hampshire". Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  4. ^ "Profile for Bedford, New Hampshire, NH". ePodunk. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  5. ^ Laybourn, Keith (2001). British Political Leaders: A Biographical Dictionary. Keith. p. 29. 
  6. ^ "Bedford". Statistics and Gazetteer of New-Hampshire, 1875. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  7. ^ "2005 Population Estimates of New Hampshire Cities and Towns" (PDF). New Hampshire Office of Energy and Planning. July 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-07-11. Retrieved 2012-12-01. 
  8. ^ Foster, Debra H.; Batorfalvy, Tatianna N.; Medalie, Laura (1995). Water Use in New Hampshire: An Activities Guide for Teachers. U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. Geological Survey. 
  9. ^ "SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS: 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP-3) - Bedford town, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire (DP-3)". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-11-27. 
  10. ^ "SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS: 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP-3) - All Towns, New Hampshire". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-11-27. 
  11. ^ Kingsbury, John Dennison (1870). Sketch of Rev. Silas Aiken. Welch, Bigelow and Company. p. 3. 
  12. ^ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1963. 
  13. ^ "Chris Carpenter". New Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  14. ^ Daughters of the American Revolution (1905). Lineage Book - National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Volume 19. Daughters of the American Revolution. p. 225. 
  15. ^ "Dean Kamen's House Rivals Best Industrial Museums". Design News. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  16. ^ "For Seth Meyers, you can go home again". Bedford Journal. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  17. ^ Dobbs, Katelyn. "For Seth Meyers, you can go home again". Bedford Journal. Retrieved 2012-07-14. 
  19. ^ "A Soprano’s Hat Trick: Puccini Triple Bill". The New York Times. Retrieved December 19, 2013. 
  20. ^ Willis, John and Monush, Barry (2010). Screen World 2006. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 404. 

External links

  • Town of Bedford official website
  • Bedford Historical Society
  • New Hampshire Economic and Labor Market Information Bureau Profile

Neighboring cities and towns

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