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Ossipee, New Hampshire

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Ossipee is a town in Carroll County, New Hampshire, United States The population was 4,345 at the 2010 census1 It is the county seat of Carroll County2 Ossipee, which includes several villages, is a resort area and home to part of Pine River State Forest


  • 1 History
  • 2 Geography
  • 3 Demographics
  • 4 Sites of interest
  • 5 Notable people
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links


Center Ossipee c 1915

Originally known as Wigwam Village, and then New Garden, the town was named for the Ossipee Indians, one of the twelve Algonquian tribes It was once the site of an Indian stockade fort, designed to protect the tribe from the Mohawks in the west In 1725, the Indian stockade was destroyed, and then rebuilt by Captain John Lovewell The new fort was one of the largest in New England The fort was located where the second green of Indian Mound Golf now is Wood, ramrods and the brass bolt used for the gate were discovered when the course was builtcitation needed On February 22, 1785, the legislature incorporated Ossipee as a town3

Although the surface of the town is "rough and uneven, and in some parts rocky and mountainous," farmers found it suitable for pasturage, as well as for cultivating wheat and potatoes Principal goods were produce, lumber and cattle In 1859, when the population was 2,123, Ossipee contained twelve sawmills, five gristmills, twelve clapboard and shingle mills, one bedstead factory, one door factory, a sash and blind factory, one paper mill and four tanneries4 The Portsmouth, Great Falls & Conway Railroad in 1871 reached Ossipee Corner, with service extended in 1875 to Center Ossipee The trains brought commerce and tourists, helping the town develop as a summer resort Railroad service, however, would be discontinued in 1961 for passengers, and in 1972 for freight5

The town shares its name with the Ossipee Mountains, a circular mountain range marking the location of an ancient volcanic ring dike, which borders it on the west Ossipee is a major source of sand and gravel, transported by railroad to Boston, Massachusetts

Ossipee claims to be the home of the first snowmobile In 1917, Virgil D White set up to create a patent for his conversion kit that changed the Ford Model T into a "snowmobile" He also copyrighted the term "snowmobile" At the time, the conversion kit was expensive, costing about $395 Virgil White applied his patent in 1918 and created his own snowmobile In 1922, his conversion kit was on the markets and available only through Ford dealerships The welcome sign for the town that states "Home of the First Snowmobile" was put up in late 20106


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 756 square miles 196 km2, of which 708 square miles 183 km2 is land and 48 square miles 12 km2 is water, comprising 637% of the town7 Ossipee is drained by the Ossipee, Pine, Beech, Bearcamp and Lovell rivers Ossipee Lake is in the northeastern part of the town The highest point in Ossipee is 2,080 feet 630 m above sea level on an unnamed ridge in the Ossipee Mountains in the western part of town

The town is crossed by state routes 16, 25, 28 and 171 It borders the towns of Freedom and Effingham to the northeast, Wakefield to the southeast, Wolfeboro, Tuftonboro and Moultonborough to the southwest, Tamworth to the northwest and Madison to the north

The two primary settlements in town are Center Ossipee, located near the southern junction of routes 16 and 25, and Ossipee Corner shown as "Ossipee" on topographic maps, located 5 miles 80 km south of Center Ossipee at the junction of routes 28 and 171 and close to Route 16 Other villages include West Ossipee, at the northern junction of routes 16 and 25 near the border with Tamworth; Moultonville, directly west of Center Ossipee; and Water Village, along Route 171 near the border with Tuftonboro


Historical population
1790 339
1800 1,143 2372%
1810 1,330 164%
1820 1,988 495%
1830 1,935 −27%
1840 2,170 121%
1850 2,123 −22%
1860 1,997 −59%
1870 1,822 −88%
1880 1,782 −22%
1890 1,630 −85%
1900 1,479 −93%
1910 1,354 −85%
1920 1,122 −171%
1930 1,230 96%
1940 1,498 218%
1950 1,412 −57%
1960 1,409 −02%
1970 1,647 169%
1980 2,465 497%
1990 3,309 342%
2000 4,211 273%
2010 4,345 32%
Est 2015 4,247 −23%
US Decennial Census9
The Carroll County Courthouse in 1921 Built in 1916, it is now the Ossipee Historical Society Museum

As of the census10 of 2000, there were 4,211 people, 1,672 households, and 1,153 families residing in the town The population density was 592 people per square mile 229/km² There were 2,742 housing units at an average density of 385 per square mile 149/km² The racial makeup of the town was 9796% White, 014% African American, 038% Native American, 021% Asian, 007% from other races, and 123% from two or more races Hispanic or Latino of any race were 033% of the population

There were 1,672 households out of which 296% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 547% were married couples living together, 92% had a female householder with no husband present, and 310% were non-families 253% of all households were made up of individuals and 115% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older The average household size was 243 and the average family size was 290

Street scene c 1910

In the town, the population was spread out with 239% under the age of 18, 62% from 18 to 24, 259% from 25 to 44, 262% from 45 to 64, and 178% who were 65 years of age or older The median age was 42 years For every 100 females there were 999 males For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 965 males

The median income for a household in the town was $34,709, and the median income for a family was $38,790 Males had a median income of $27,388 versus $21,579 for females The per capita income for the town was $18,092 About 77% of families and 100% of the population were below the poverty line, including 150% of those under age 18 and 66% of those age 65 or over

Sites of interestedit

  • Ossipee Historical Society Museum
  • Ossipee Lake
  • Ossipee Pine Barrens

Notable peopleedit

  • Dale Bozzio, lead singer of 1980s band Missing Personscitation needed
  • Fred H Brown, US senator and the 59th governor of New Hampshire
  • Captain John Lovewell, soldier
  • Chester Earl Merrow, US congressman
  • William B Small, US congressman
  • John Greenleaf Whittier, poet summer resident


  1. ^ United States Census Bureau, American FactFinder, 2010 Census figures Retrieved March 23, 2011
  2. ^ "Find a County" National Association of Counties Retrieved 2011-06-07 
  3. ^ New Hampshire Economic and Labor Market Information Bureau Profile
  4. ^ Austin J Coolidge & John B Mansfield, A History and Description of New England; Boston, Massachusetts 1859
  5. ^ A New Hampshire Village Through Two Centuries, Ossipee Historical Society
  6. ^ http://wwwnhsnocarcom/indexphpoption=com_content&view=article&id=50&Itemid=62
  7. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data G001 - Ossipee town, New Hampshire" US Census Bureau American Factfinder Retrieved November 7, 2011 
  8. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015" Retrieved July 2, 2016 
  9. ^ "Census of Population and Housing" Censusgov Retrieved June 4, 2016 
  10. ^ "American FactFinder" United States Census Bureau Retrieved 2008-01-31 

External linksedit

  • Town of Ossipee official website
  • Ossipee Public Library
  • Ossipee Historical Society
  • Ossipee Valley Snowmobile Club
  • New Hampshire Economic and Labor Market Information Bureau Profile
  • Ossipee Genealogy Project
‹ The template below Geographic location is being considered for deletion See templates for discussion to help reach a consensus ›

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