New Hampshire’s
Immigrants
Who Are We? And…
Where Did We Come From?
In New Hampshire…
We Are All Immigrants
Everyone originally came from
somewhere else to settle in our
region.
The First to Arrive
Technically…
Even Native Americans
(our first settlers)
could be considered
immigrants.
The First to Arrive
Native Americans
did not always live
here.
They started moving
into the region from
around the Great
Lakes and Ohio River valley shortly after the
glaciers began to recede.
The First to Arrive
Just as later
settlers came from
elsewhere, so did
Native Americans.
But by the time
Europeans arrived,
American Indians had been here a long, long
time!
The Next Wave
Beginning in the 1500s,
Europeans explored the
rich fishing areas along the
New England and
Canadian coastlines.
Increasingly, exploration
was dominated by French
and English sailors.
England
France
The Next Wave
At first, they merely
explored, looking to
fish and trade for
animal pelts.
But in 1623, the
English began to
settle in what is now
New Hampshire.
1625
1790
In the early days, English presence was confined to
the
small coastal area.
Within 175 years, however, the new immigrants had
displaced almost all the Native Americans who once
lived here.
This immigrant population
was not entirely English.
The census for 1790 listed
787 African blacks in the
state.
They had not immigrated by
choice!
Some were held as slaves,
while others were
designated as free. Even
free blacks, however, had
probably once been
enslaved.
Also, a number of
southern New
Hampshire towns had
been settled by Scots
from Northern Ireland.
As New Hampshire
changed from a
province to a state,
more than 5% of its
population was ScotsIrish.
Era of Immigration
The 1800s were
years of great
change for New
Hampshire.
By the middle of the
century, large
numbers of Irish
immigrants had
come to the state to
work.
Ireland
Era of Immigration
Between 1880 and
1920, New
Hampshire’s Irish
immigrants were
joined by thousands
from throughout
Europe and French
Canada.
Finland
Sweden
Russia
Ireland
Germany
Lithuania
Poland
Austria
Italy
Quebec
Greece
Era of Immigration
They came to work!
Some helped build
railroads.
Others toiled in the logging
industry, which had grown
because of the railroads.
Still others quarried granite,
and many labored in the
textile
mills that lined New
Hampshire’s rapid streams and
Era of Immigration
These immigrants also
worked at adjusting to
American culture —
At the same time, they
retained some of their
native traditions.
Benevolent Fraternal Order in Reverent
Memory of Pulaski (1929)
L’Association Catholique de Jeunesse
Franco-Américaine (1910)
Holy Resurrection Russian Orthodox Church
in Claremont
This chart shows nationalities whose numbers of foreign-born New
Hampshire residents exceeded 1,000 in at least one of the census
years between 1890 and 1920.
44,420
14,890
5,280
4,345
3,997
2,438
2,068
2,046
2,074
1,558
1,017
End of the Era
This World War I poster celebrates
the diversity of our heritage,
but…
After the war was over, the Era of
Immigration came to an end.
In the early 1920s, the U.S.
Congress enacted laws
establishing a quota system
based on country of origin.
Variations of these laws remained
in effect until 1965.
A New Era
St. Anne Roman
Catholic Church
in Manchester
exemplifies changes
in immigration
patterns in recent
years.
Begun in 1849, to
accommodate the
new Irish
immigrants,
the church today
ministers to the city’s
latest immigrants —
as its sign attests.
This chart shows nationalities whose numbers of foreignborn
New Hampshire residents exceeded 1,000 in the 2000
census.
12,397
2,670
2,530
2,261
1,582
1,440
1,419
1,261
1,227
1,103
1,031
Can you find your own heritage among the nationalities
represented in the two waves of immigration shown here?
Ireland
Poland
Russia
Austria
Italy
Sweden
Finland
Lithuania
Canada
Germany
Greece
Early 20th Century
India
China
Korea
Vietnam
Dominican Republic
Mexico
Brazil
Philippines
Early 21st Century
If your national ancestry was not among the larger immigrant groups,
perhaps you will find it among these other contributors of firstgeneration New Hampshire residents as listed in the 2000 census.
Afghanistan
Czechoslovakia
Israel
Polynesia
Argentina
Ecuador
Jamaica
Portugal
Armenia
Egypt
Japan
Romania
Australia
El Salvador
Jordan
Sierra Leone
Bangladesh
Ethiopia
Laos
South Africa
Barbados
France
Lebanon
Spain
Belarus
Ghana
Malaysia
Syria
Bolivia
Guatemala
Melanesia
Taiwan
Bosnia-Herzegovina
Guyana
Micronesia
Thailand
Cambodia
Haiti
Netherlands
Trinidad & Tobago
Chile
Honduras
Nicaragua
Turkey
China
Hungary
Nigeria
United Kingdom
Colombia
Indonesia
Pakistan
Ukraine
Costa Rica
Iran
Panama
Venezuela
Cuba
Iraq
Peru
Yugoslavia
Adiós Au Revoir Aloha
Arrivederci Do svidanja
Zbogom
Vaarwel
Auf Wiedersehen
Good-bye!
© 2008 Christopher MacLeod for the
New Hampshire Historical Society
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New Hampshire’s Immigrants