17 SCHOOLS in NEW HAMPSHIRE
With its famed motto, “Live Free or Die,” New Hampshire has been a symbol of liberty throughout its existence. Many of New Hampshire’s early settlers had come from the more repressive Puritan settlements in Massachusetts, and New Hampshire’s first struggle for independence was from the colony of Massachusetts, in 1679. New Hampshire was the first state to declare its freedom from England and set up its own government six months before the Declaration of Independence, and though New Hampshire only had one battle during the Revolutionary War, it was the first – the raid on Fort William and Mary, months before the more famous Battles of Lexington and Concord. New Hampshire continues its tradition of patriotism and political influence today, in a very different form; as the home of the nation’s earliest Presidential Primaries, New Hampshire is one of the most important states for determining who will be selected to represent each party in the presidential elections. New Hampshire winners take an early lead; dark horses who show well in New Hampshire establish national attention; and a loss in New Hampshire is usually defeating. With its centrality to the primary process, New Hampshire is the focus of attention in every election year, with Saint Anselm College’s New Hampshire Institute of Politics being a required destination.
New Hampshire was able to take on a leadership role early on because of its economy, which made the most of its ports and natural resources to build a strong middle and upper class of merchants and craftspeople. Shipyards, warehouses, lumber, and rock quarries (the origin of New Hampshire’s nickname, The Granite State) built a foundation for manufacturing, putting New Hampshire in the perfect position to transition into the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century; textile mills, lumber plants, and machine manufacturing made New Hampshire an industrial giant despite its small size, and attracted a host of immigrants from Canada, Ireland, and Europe. New Hampshire also anticipated the end of the American manufacturing sector, and by the 21st century had established a modern economy based in technology, finance, services, and tourism, with the state’s majestic mountains attracting thousands of outdoor adventure recreational tourists each year. New Hampshire ranked in the top 10 for the highest proportion of millionaires, and has the lowest poverty rate of any American state – plus no state sales tax or income tax.
New Hampshire’s higher education system has carried the state every step of the way through its historic transitions, from educating many of the new republic’s early justices, senators, and representatives at Dartmouth College (an Ivy League research institutions and one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution), to helping make New Hampshire one of the formative influences on the US Presidential Elections. The University of New Hampshire, and the public regional universities in the UNH system, help prepare New Hampshire’s youth for professions, and make New Hampshire’s professionals into leaders. Plus, Southern New Hampshire University’s online excellence is pointing the direction to the future of New Hampshire, reinventing education as one of the nation’s more innovative schools.