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Hart's Location, New Hampshire facts for kids

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Hart's Location, New Hampshire
Looking north along U.S. Route 302 in Hart's Location
Looking north along U.S. Route 302 in Hart's Location
Location in Carroll County, New Hampshire
Country United States
State New Hampshire
County Carroll
Incorporated 1795
 • Total 18.78 sq mi (48.65 km2)
 • Land 18.68 sq mi (48.38 km2)
 • Water 0.10 sq mi (0.27 km2)  0.56%
897 ft (273 m)
 • Total 68
 • Density 4/sq mi (1.4/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP Code
Area code 603
FIPS code 33-34500
GNIS feature ID 0872015

Hart's Location is a town in Carroll County, New Hampshire, United States. Since 1948, the town has been one of the first places to declare its results for the New Hampshire presidential primary and U.S. presidential elections.

The population was 68 as of the 2020 census. It was incorporated in 1795. Hart's Location receives services from the nearby town of Bartlett, but otherwise has its own government, selectmen and post office. Home to Crawford Notch State Park, which is noted for its rugged mountain beauty, the town is crossed by the Appalachian Trail.


Old Willey House, Crawford Notch, NH
Old Willey House (1793-1898)

Hart's Location was named after Colonel John Hart of Portsmouth. In 1772, the land was granted to Thomas Chadbourne, also of Portsmouth. Native Americans used a trail up the Saco River valley through Crawford Notch, and during the French and Indian Wars, many English captives were taken to Canada that way. But the pass through the White Mountains was otherwise unknown until 1771, when Timothy Nash discovered it hunting moose, and told Governor John Wentworth.

The obscure Indian trail transformed into the Coös Road, on which was built a small public house in 1793. It was abandoned, but in 1825 Samuel Willey, Jr. occupied it with his wife, five children, and two hired hands. During a violent storm on August 28, 1826, they all perished in a landslide known as Willey's Slide. They fled their home and took refuge in a shelter, but it was destroyed while the house remained unscathed. A rock outcrop uphill divided the slide, which flowed around the home and reunited below it. The door was found gaping, a bible open on the table. Their tragedy inspired "The Ambitious Guest" (1835) by Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Mount Willey was named in their memory. The house became part of a larger inn, then burned in 1898. Today, the location is a state historic site.

In 1875, the Portland and Ogdensburg Railroad completed its line up through Crawford Notch. Passengers thrilled to traverse the Frankenstein Trestle, 520 feet (158 meters) long and 85 feet (26 meters) above the ravine floor, and then the Willey Brook Bridge, 400 feet (122 meters) long and 94 feet (29 meters) high. Later part of the Mountain Division of the Maine Central Railroad, the route is still traveled by the Conway Scenic Railroad.


Frankenstein Cliff and Mt. Washington
Frankenstein Cliff c. 1905

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 18.6 square miles (48.1 km2), of which 18.5 square miles (47.9 km2) is land and 0.12 square miles (0.3 km2), or 0.56%, is water.

The shape of Hart's Location is unusual: about 11 miles (18 km) long and 1.5 miles (2.4 km) wide, with crooked boundaries that echo the confines of Crawford Notch, threaded by the upper Saco River and U.S. Route 302 near the centerline of the town, and pinched from both sides between steep mountains and in some areas sheer cliffs above. This anomaly is heightened on maps that show county lines: Coos County lies immediately to the east and Grafton County to the west, but Hart's Location is part of Carroll County, though barely connected to it.

The highest point in Hart's Location is 3,900 feet (1,200 m) above sea level along the town's western boundary, beneath the summit of 4,285-foot (1,306 m) Mount Willey. Arethusa Falls, New Hampshire's highest waterfall, located in the neighboring township of Livermore, is a popular hiking destination with access from U.S. Route 302 in Hart's Location. The town lies fully within the Saco River watershed.

The town is a popular ice climbing destination in the winter months.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1870 26
1880 70 169.2%
1890 187 167.1%
1900 38 −79.7%
1910 85 123.7%
1920 35 −58.8%
1930 29 −17.1%
1940 17 −41.4%
1950 11 −35.3%
1960 7 −36.4%
1970 7 0.0%
1980 27 285.7%
1990 36 33.3%
2000 37 2.8%
2010 41 10.8%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2000, there were 37 people, 15 households, and 10 families residing in the location. The population density was 2.0 people per square mile (0.8/km2). There were 50 housing units at an average density of 2.7 per square mile (1.0/km2). The racial makeup of the location was 97.30% (36 people) White, with 2.70% (one person) citing themselves as from two or more races.

There were 15 households, out of which 33.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 66.7% were married couples living together, and 33.3% were non-families. 26.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.10.

In the location the age distribution of the population shows 24.3% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 35.1% from 25 to 44, 8.1% from 45 to 64, and 27.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.0 males.

The median income for a household in the location was $41,250, and the median income for a family was $70,833. Males had a median income of $26,250 versus $28,750 for females. The per capita income for the town was $19,609. None of the population and none of the families were below the poverty line.

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