Skip to main contentAccessibility feedback

New Hampshire

The state

Click to enlarge


New Hampshire, the most northerly of the thirteen original states of the United States, lying between 70° 37′ and 72° 37′ west long., and between 42° 40′ and 45° 18′ 23″ north lat. It comprises an area of 9305 square miles, and according to the census of 1910, has a population of 430,572. New Hampshire is bounded on the south by Massachusetts, the dividing line beginning on the Atlantic shore at a point three miles north of the Merrimac; thence westerly, following the course of the river at the same distance to a point three miles north of Pawtucket Falls, thence westerly fifty-five miles to the western bank of the Connecticut; on the east by the Atlantic for about eighteen miles from said southern boundary to the middle of the mouth of Piscataqua harbor, thence by the State of Maine to the Canada line, the dividing line between Maine and New Hampshire beginning at the middle of the mouth of Piscataqua harbor, thence up the middle of the river to its most northerly head, thence north, two degrees west, to the Canada line; on the north by the Province of Quebec, the dividing line passing along the highlands that divide the rivers emptying into the St. Lawrence from those emptying into the sea; on the west by the Province of Quebec, southerly to the forty-fifth parallel of latitude, and by the State of Vermont the line passing from the northwest head of the Connecticut river along the middle of that river to the forty-fifth parallel of north latitude (Treaty of 1783), and thence following the western bank of that river to the Massachusetts line. The southwest part of the Isles of Shoals, off the coast of New Hampshire, belongs to that state, the rest to Maine, the dividing line passing between Cedar and Smutty Nose Islands, Maine and Star Island, the most populous of the group in New Hampshire.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS—New Hampshire is a state of hills and mountains, sloping gradually from north to south. A range of hills runs through the state from the southern boundary nearly to its northern extremity, buttressed at uneven intervals, south of the White Mountains, by Mounts Monadnock, Kearsarge, and Cardigan; a little further north it spreads into the plateau of ‘the White Mountains, some thirty miles long by forty-five wide, and from sixteen to eighteen hundred feet high. From this plateau arise some two hundred peaks in two groups: the White and Sandwich Mountains to the eastward, and the Franconia to the westward. This range divides the waters of the Androscoggin, the Saco, and the Merrimac rivers on the east from those of the Connecticut on the west. The White Mountain region is strikingly grand. Here Mount Washington (6290 feet) and Mounts Adams, Jefferson, Clay, Monroe, and others each rise nearly a mile in height. The fame of the beauty and sublimity of this region is worldwide and attracts countless visitors. In the southeastern portion of the state, from the Merrimac valley to the sea, the land is lower and much of it fertile. Two-thirds of the largest cities and towns of the state are in this section. The climate is rugged and healthy, the air pure and bracing; the summers are short and changeable, but the autumn is generally delightful. The winters are very severe, though less so in the valleys of the Connecticut and Merrimac. Cold weather usually lasts eight months, with snow half that period.

RESOURCES.—Agriculture: The soil of the state outside the mountain regions is well watered and fairly productive, and good crops are raised of the ordinary farm staples: hay, corn, oats, potatoes, etc., but the chief food supply comes from the west. Industries: By the last census (1900) the gross value of the manufactures in the state is placed at $123,610,904, the net value at $85,008,010. These manufactures are largely confined to the cities and leading towns, which contain 65.8 per cent. of the establishments, manufacture 79.2 per cent. of the value, and pay 81.4 per cent. of the wages. Among the chief manufactures are boots and shoes, about $23,500,000; leather goods, $23,000,000; lumber, $9,125,000; woollens, $7,700, 000; paper and pulp, $7,125,000; machinery, cars, carriages, and furniture. Minerals: Chief among the mineral products is granite, of which there are valuable quarries at Concord, Hooksett, Mason, and other towns. Steatite or soapstone is also found in quantity at Francestown, Orford, and elsewhere; the quarry at Frances town being one of the most valuable in the Union. Graphite, mica, limestone, and slate are also found. Commerce: New Hampshire has but one seaport, Portsmouth, which has considerable coasting trade. The importation of foodstuffs and raw material, and the distribution of her vast volume of manufactures constitute an important interstate and domestic commerce, carried on chiefly by rail. Foreign importations come chiefly through Boston. The state is covered by a network of steam and electric railroads, connecting every city and town of any importance with the business centers.

EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM.—The state has always carefully provided for education. Under the Constitution (Part II, art., 82), it is the duty of the legislature and magistrate to cherish the interests of literature, the sciences, and all seminaries and public schools; to encourage private and public institutions, rewards, and immunities for the promotion of arts, sciences, etc.; but no money raised by taxation shall ever be applied for the use of the schools or institution any religious denomination. The law directs that every child from eight to fourteen shall attend school at least, twelve weeks each year. Practically every town is a school district and may raise money by taxation for school purposes, and may, separately or uniting with other districts, establish a high school, or contract with academies in its vicinity for instruction of its scholars. The districts must meet at least once annually; oftener, if necessary. In the larger towns and cities the schools are graded and, liberally provided for, are in charge of local officials, elected by the people in every district, town, and ward, and known as School Committees. In the cities these form schoolboards and appoint superintendents. All are under the general care of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, appointed by the governor. In 1908 there were 2127 public schools, with a membership of 54,472 pupils, under 2999 teachers, of whom 255 were men. Manual training is provided in Manchester, Concord, Portsmouth, Rochester, and Berlin.

Evening schools are maintained in three cities, attended by 365 pupils, of which 308 are male. In places of 4000 people and over, 796 children attend kindergartens. The New Hampshire School for the Feeble Minded, at Laconia, has 89 inmates, under 4 instructors. There were 58 public high schools, with 243 teachers (84 men), and 5250 pupils. The State Normal School at Plymouth (founded 1870) has 14 teachers and 180 pupils, with 350 children in the model schools. Another normal school is in prospect. The total revenue from taxation for the public schools (1906-7) was $1,293,013. Apart from Catholic schools, there are 24 secondary schools reported in 1908, with 167 teachers and 3235 pupils, over 900 of these being elementary. Among the private academies in the state, Phillips Exeter Academy deserves special mention. The New Hampshire College of Agriculture and the Mechanical Arts at Durham (founded 1867) is an excellent and liberally endowed state institution with 196 students (1908), 9 men and 13 women in general science; 48 men and 2 women in agriculture, and 124 men in engineering; professors and instructors, 31. Dartmouth College, at Hanover, (founded 1769) the chief university of the state, is an incorporated institution, not under state control. It has 69 professors in its collegiate department and 23 in its professional departments; 1102 collegiate students and 58 professional, including the Medical Department, the Thayer School of Civil Engineering, and the Amos Tuck School of Finance. St. Anselm’s College, founded by the Benedictine Fathers in 1893 at the invitation of Bishop Bradley, is situated in Goffstown. The courses are collegiate, academic, and commercial, with 18 professors, 3 assistants, and 156 students. There is a fine state library at Concord and excellent libraries in all the cities. Every town of any importance either has its own library or is in easy reach of excellent library accommodations.

HISTORY.—Civil.—The first to settle in the limits of New Hampshire seems to have been David Thomson, a Scotchman, who in 1622 was granted 6000 acres and an island in New England (N. H. State Papers, XXV, 715). Forming a partnership with some Ply-mouth merchants, he came over in 1623 and settled south of the Piscataqua, calling the place Little Harbor. Nothing is known of this settlement, except that about three years afterwards Thomson moved to an island in Boston harbor which still bears his name. It is claimed with reason that at about the same time William and Edward Hilton settled a few miles further up the Piscataqua at what was called Hilton’s Point or Northam, now Dover, though the formal grant of their patent was 1630 (Belknap, “Hist.”, 8). Also, that all these men were sent by John Mason, Ferdinando Gorges, and a company of English merchants. In 1621, 1622, and 1629, Sir Ferdinando an officer in the English navy, and Captain John Mason, a London merchant, afterward a naval officer and Governor of Newfoundland, both royal favorites, procured various grants of what is now New Hampshire and a great deal more, from the Plymouth Company, organized by James I “for the planting, ruling, and governing of New England“, and apparently under some arrangement with Thomson and others interested, sent over some eighty men and women duly supplied and furnished, by whom settlements were made on both sides of the Piscataqua near its mouth. Building a house, called Mason Hall, they began salt works, calling the settlement Strawberry Bank; while at Newitchwannock, now South Berwick, Maine, they built a saw mill. Things went along passably well till Mason died in 1635, after which the houses and cattle were taken to satisfy the wages and claims of his servants. Neither he nor Gorges seem to have reaped any profit from their investment. The claims of the Mason heirs were a bone of contention till 1788, when a settlement was effected. On two different occasions they delivered the colony from Massachusetts‘s sway on account of the influence the claimants had first with Charles II in 1679 and again with William III in 1692.

The settlements spread slowly, the people coming chiefly from Hampshire County, where Mason had held a lucrative office under the crown and from which he had named the plantation “New Hampshire”. In 1638 John Wheelwright, a preacher, who had been disfranchised and banished from Boston for his religious opinions, settled, with some adherents, at Squamscott Falls, as being outside the Massachusetts patent, calling the place Exeter, and here they organized a local government, creating three magistrates, the laws to be made by the townsmen in public assembly, with the assent of the magistrates. The settlements at Dover and Strawberry Bank (Portsmouth) soon followed the example of Exeter and established local self-government. It is important to note that Mason, Gorges, Thomson, the Hiltons, and the wealthy merchants associated with them, were devoted supporters of the Church of England. The powerful Massachusetts Bay Colony, then the very essence of intense Puritanism, soon turned its attention to the struggling Anglican colonies on its northern borders, which it determined to seize. Proceeding with consummate craft and skill, they laid out the town of Hampton, clearly within the Mason patent, and settled it with people from Norfolk (Belknap, 1, 38), over the Mason protest. They procured powerful Puritan friends, Lords Say and Brook, and others, to buy up the Hilton patent at a cost of £2150, and to send over large numbers of West of England Puritans and a minister who built and fortified a church on Dover Neck (Belknap, 1, 32). Jealousies, fears, and factions arose between the old settlers and the new corners. Then emissaries from the Bay appeared at the proper time on the Piscataqua (Fry, 37), “to understand the minds of the people and to prepare them”, and their report was entirely satisfactory to their principals. They then (1641) got the purchasers of the Hilton patent to put it solemnly under the government of Massachusetts. And now, the time being ripe; and England too distracted with her own internal troubles to interfere, Massachusetts assumed jurisdiction over the New Hampshire settlements (October, 1641). Very soon after Puritans appeared among the settlers and obtained possession of the principal offices, dividing among themselves a goodly share of the common lands (Fry, 30). They silenced the Anglican minister at Portsmouth, seized the church, parsonage, and the fifty acres of glebe that had been granted that church by Governor Williams and the people, and in due time turned them over to a Puritan minister. Minister Wheelwright left Exeter and went to Maine.

For nearly one hundred years, or until the capture of Quebec by Wolfe and the subsequent surrender of Canada (1759-63), the development of New Hampshire was seriously impaired by the Indian wars, her territory being not only the borderland, but also in the warpath of the Indians from Canada to the New England settlements. These wars seem to have been occasioned by the misdeeds, aggression, or treachery of the whites (Belknap, “Hist.” I, 133, 242). There is no doubt that encroachments on their lands and fraud in trade gave sufficient grounds for a quarrel and kept up jealousy and fear (Belknap, I, 123). And the same writer gives the eastern settlers of New England but a poor character for religion and deems their conduct unattractive to the Indians (Hist., II, 47). Such would surely be the drowning by some rascals of the Saco chief Squando’s babe; while the treachery of Major Waldron in 1676 in betraying them in time of peace in his own home, and consigning two hundred of them to slavery or death, was never forgotten nor forgiven (Belknap, I, 143), and brought untold horrors on the people till it was avenged in his blood on his own hearthstone in the Indian attack on Dover in 1689. But through war or peace the population steadily increased. Estimated at between 3000 and 4000 in 1679, it was placed at 52,700 in 1767, and in 1775 at 83,300. The settlers, of course, were mainly English but about 1719 a colony of one hundred families of Ulster Protestants came from Ireland to Massachusetts and after many trials a number of them settled on a tract in New Hampshire above Haverhill, known as Nutfield, where they established the towns of Londonderry and Derry; the rest settling in different parts of the country. This hardy and industrious element brought with it to New Hampshire the potato. After the capture of Quebec the settlements increased more rapidly, soon clashing in the west with New York‘s claims, till the boundary was settled by royal decree in 1764.

None of the thirteen colonies was better satisfied with British rule than New Hampshire. She had an extremely popular governor and had received fair treatment from the home government. It is true that patriots took alarm at the assumption of power to tax the people without their consent, and at the severity exercised towards the neighboring sister colony; and took due precautions to consult for the common safety; also, that when the king and council prohibited the exportation of powder and military stores to America, the citizens, in December, 1774, quietly removed one hundred barrels of powder, the light cannon, small arms, and military stores from Fort William and Mary in Portsmouth harbor to more convenient places. The provincial convention, early in 1776, in forming a provisional government, publicly declared they had been happy under British rule and would rejoice if a reconciliation could be effected, but when they saw the home government persevere in its design of oppression, the Assembly at once (June 15, 1776) instructed its delegates at Philadelphia to join in declaring the thirteen colonies independent, and pledged their lives and fortunes thereto. This pledge was well redeemed through the war from Bunker Hill to Bennington and Yorktown, and New Hampshire’s soldiers under Stark and Sullivan, Scammell and Cilley, and others, did their full part and more; while the hardy sailors of Portsmouth and its vicinity did gallant service in the navy under Paul Jones, whose ship, “The Ranger”, was built and fitted out at that port. After careful consideration New Hampshire adopted the Constitution, June 21, 1788, being the ninth state to do so; thus making the number required to give it effect. During the war of the Rebellion, notwithstanding considerable difference of party opinion, the state supported Lincoln and contributed its full share of men to the Union army and navy.

Ecclesiastical.—It was not eighty years from Henry VIII to Mason, and so it was that men imbued with the spirit of the English penal laws settled New Hampshire, whether of the Cavalier stripe, such as Mason, Gorges, and the Hiltons, or Puritan, such as Higgins, the Waldrons, and the Moodeys. In the book of the Puritan the word “toleration” was not written, or only mentioned to be denied and scoffed at by the gravest and most venerable of their teachers and upon the most solemn occasions. President Oakes calls toleration “The first born of all abominations” (Election Sermon, 1673), “Having its origin,” says Shepherd, “with the devil” (Election Sermon, 1672). As Dr. Belknap sums it up, “Liberty of conscience and toleration were offensive terms and they who used them were supposed to be the enemies of religion and government” (Hist., 84). The rigidity with which this idea was carried out towards their brethren who differed with them is shown in the case of Roger Williams, and the people of Salem, who were disfranchised and their property rights withheld for remonstrating in favor of liberty of conscience; Williams escaping only by flight to Narragansett Bay; and in multitudes of other instances, as well as in their merciless persecution of the Quakers, extending to imprisonment, scourging, mutilation, and death; as witness their laws from 1656 to 1661, and the barbarities perpetrated under them. It was during Massachusetts‘ usurpation in New Hampshire, and probably by one of the parties she colonized on the Hilton Patent, the notorious Richard Waldron, that the three Quakers, Anna Coleman, Mary Tomkins, and Alice Ambrose were ordered to be whipped, like infamous criminals, from Dover through eleven towns, and to the disgrace of the colony, the sentence was executed as far as the Massachusetts line; where the victims were rescued and set free by some ruse of the Cavalier Doctor Barefoot, and some friends, as the story goes, Waldron’s warrant running in Massachusetts also.

Such being their attitude towards their Protestant brethren, it is easy to understand why so few Catholics appear among the early settlers; especially as they were banned by the charter of the Plymouth Council, which excluded from New England all who had not taken the Oath of Supremacy. Catholics were denied the right of freemen under the Royal Commission of 1679, which required the Oath of Supremacy and this was endorsed by the General Assembly held at Portsmouth the following year; and in 1696 an odious and insulting test-oath was imposed on the people under pain of fine or imprisonment. The proscription of Catholics continued to disfigure the state constitution even after the adoption of the federal constitution. The State Constitutional Convention of 1791 refused to amend the constitution of 1784, by abolishing the religious test that excluded Catholics from the office of governor, councillor, state senator, and representative, the vote standing thirty yeas to fifty-one nays. It is significant that the names of those voting nay are not entered on the record (Journal, p. 52). The convention of 1876 abolished all religious disqualifications, and this was adopted by the people except as to one clause empowering towns, parishes, etc. to provide at their own expense for public, “Protestant” teachers of religion and morality. The convention of 1889 voted to abolish this distinction; but this vote also failed of ratification, and the discrimination still remains a blot on the fairest and first of all written American state constitutions.

First Catholic Missions.—In 1816 Rev. Virgil Barber, an Episcopal minister and principal of an Academy at Fairfield, N. Y., son of Rev. Daniel Barber of Claremont, N. H., observing a prayerbook in the hands of a Catholic servant, made inquiries which resulted in his giving up his school and pastorate and becoming a Catholic. Afterwards, by agreement between himself and his wife, they separated. He and his son entered the Jesuits, and Mrs. Barber and her four daughters entered convents. Father Barber was ordained in 1822 and sent to Claremont, where he built a small brick church and academy, still standing; and according to Bishop Fenwick in 1825 there were about one hundred and fifty persons, almost all converts, attending it. The following year Father Barber was sent by Bishop Fenwick to visit the eastern part of the diocese and found one hundred Catholics in Dover, eager for a church. In 1828 Father Charles Ffrench was assigned to that mission, which extended from Dover to Eastport and Bangor. Father Ffrench built the church of St. Aloysius at Dover (dedicated 1836), the second Catholic church in the state. In 1833 Father Lee was appointed resident pastor, and the following year he was succeeded by Father Patrick Canovan. In 1835 the Catholic population of the state is given as 385; in 1842 it was placed at 1370, ministered to by Fathers Daly and Canovan. Then came the emigration from Ireland (1845). In Manchester, N. H., in 1848 there were five hundred Catholics, and Bishop Fitzpatrick sent thither Rev. William McDonald, a wise, far-seeing, zealous, and devoted priest. A church was soon built, the present church of St. Anne, rebuilt in 1852. In 1857 he built a convent near the church for the Sisters of Mercy, organized schools, using the basement of the church till he could build or purchase buildings. The influx of Irish Catholics continuing, in 1867 he built St. Joseph‘s church, now the cathedral. He secured eligible sites for a church, a school, and charitable purposes; an orphan asylum, a Home for Aged Women, and a fine brick school for girls. Emigration from Canada set in, which he duly cared for, as he spoke French, till in 1871 a Canadian priest, Rev. J. H. Chevalier, was sent to Manchester, where he built a fine church and developed a flourishing parish. Father McDonald died in 1885, greatly beloved, honored, and lamented by his fellow citizens, irrespective of creed. A beautiful mortuary chapel was erected by Bishop Bradley over his remains. Meanwhile such men as the late Fathers O’Donnell and Millette of Nashua, Barry of Concord, Murphy of Dover, O’Callaghan of Portsmouth and other zealous priests built up fine parishes in the chief manufacturing centers.

In 1853 Maine and New Hampshire were created a diocese. Father David W. Bacon, consecrated bishop in 1855, died in 1874, and was succeeded (1875) by the Right Rev. J. A. Healy. In 1884 the state was made the Diocese of Manchester with Father Denis M. Bradley, then pastor of St. Joseph‘s, as its first bishop. Under Bishop Bradley, a man of great mental power and breadth of view, of quick perception and sound judgment, singularly sweet in disposition, an able administrator and utterly devoted to his calling, the progress of the diocese was almost incredible. The tide of French Canadian immigration to the manufacturing centers of the state now increased tremendously and the new bishop spared no pains to procure the best pastors to care for the ever increasing flock. Two other magnificent brick churches for this element, St. Mary’s and St. George’s, with schools for each sex, and convents for the sisters, were built, together with all the usual parish institutions. In 1884 there were 45,000 Catholics in the state, with 27 churches, 5 convents, 40 priests, and 3000 children in the parochial schools. After nineteen years, there were 100,000 Catholics, 91 churches, 24 chapels, 36 stations, 107 priests, 12,000 children in the parochial schools, 4 hospitals, 4 homes for aged women. Bishop Bradley died December 13, 1903, and was succeeded in 1904 by Bishop John B. Delaney, whose untimely death in June, 1906, cut short his administration. His successor is the present bishop, Right Rev. George Albert Guertin. The new prelate has evidently brought with him the same prudence, zeal, and administrative ability that marked his career as a priest, and his work thus far has already borne rich fruit. There are now in the diocese over 126,000 Catholics, with 118 secular priests, and 19 regulars; 99 churches, 24 chapels, and 34 stations; over 13,000 children in the parochial schools, 7 orphan asylums, caring for 718 orphans, 5 homes for working girls, with many other charitable institutions. No Catholic has yet held the office of Judge of the Supreme Court; recently a Catholic, Hon. John M. Mitchell of Concord, was appointed judge of the Superior Court of the State.

RELIGIOUS POLITY.—Freedom of worship is now recognized as “a natural and unalienable right” under the Constitution; and no one shall be molested in person or property for exercising the same as his conscience dictates, or for his sentiments or persuasion; or be compelled to pay to the support of another persuasion; and no subordination of one denomination to another shall ever be established by law (Bill of Rights, Art. 5). All work, business, and labor of one’s secular calling to the disturbance of others on Sunday, except works of necessity and mercy, are forbidden under penalty of fine and imprisonment, and no person shall engage in any play, game or sport on that day (Gen. laws; Ch. 271). The form of oath of office prescribed in the Constitution is, “I do solemnly swear, etc.—so help me God.” Or, in case of persons scrupulous of swearing; “This I do under the pains and penalties of perjury”. The same forms are followed in respect to witnesses in the courts, but any other form may be used which the affiant professes to believe may be more binding on the conscience. Open denial of the existence of God, or willful blasphemy of the name of God, Jesus Christ, or the Holy Ghost, cursing or reproaching His word contained in the Bible, are punishable with severe fine and sureties for good behavior for a year. Profane cursing or swearing is punishable by fine of one dollar for first offense, and two dollars for subsequent offenses. Opening the legislature by prayer is a matter of custom since 1745, though as early as 1680 the Assembly was opened by prayer. Christmas Day is recognized as a legal holiday. Under the Puritan regime whoever kept Christmas Day had to pay five pounds, over twenty-four dollars (Commissioners Rep. to King). The seal of confession is not recognized by law. No instances of its being attacked have arisen, and probably public opinion would frown down any such attempt.

INCORPORATION OF CHARITIES.—Apart from special incorporation by the legislature, easily obtainable, any five persons may associate themselves together and become a corporation for religious or charitable purposes, by filing articles of agreement with their town clerk, and the Secretary of State. The laws could not well be more liberal toward such societies. A religious society, though not incorporated, is a corporation in this state, for the purpose of holding and using donations or grants worth not more than $5000 a year. Any officers, such as trustees or deacons, of any church, if citizens, shall be deemed a corporation, to hold any grants or donations of the above value, either to them and their successors, to their church or to the poor. No religious society shall be dissolved, or its right to any property affected, by failure to hold its annual meeting, to choose its officers, or for any informality in electing or qualifying its officers, or for any defect in its records.

TAXATION.—All “Houses of Public Worship” are exempt from taxation; also twenty-five hundred dollars of the value of parsonages owned by religious societies and occupied by their pastors; also school houses and “Seminaries of learning”. Ordained ministers are exempt from jury duty, but not from military duty. The sale of liquor is regulated by a stringent high licence law, sale for sacramental purposes being expressly recognized and coming under a low licence fee, ten dollars.

MARRIAGE AND DIVORCE.—The age of consent, for females is thirteen, for males fourteen. Marriages to the degree of first cousins are incestuous and void, and the issue illegitimate. Marriages may be solemnized by a justice of the peace in his county, or by an ordained minister in good standing, resident in the state; also by ministers out of the state, commissioned by the governor to be legally authorized officers. Children born before marriage and duly acknowledged thereafter are deemed legitimate. The legitimacy of the children is not to be affected by decree of divorce unless so expressed in the decree. If one of the parties thereto believed they were lawfully married and the marriage was consummated, it is valid, although before a supposed but not actual justice or minister, or under an informal or defective certificate of intention. The causes for legal divorce are impotency, adultery, extreme cruelty, conviction of crime entailing over a year’s imprisonment; treatment seriously injuring health or reason, habitual drunkenness, refusal to cohabit or support for three years, refusal for six months, when conjoined with religious belief (Gen. Stat., Ch. 174). Where legal cause for divorce exists, all the objects of separation—non-access, non-interference with person and property, alimony, custody of children—can be obtained without a legal divorce, should the injured party so desire (Stat., 1909).

PRISONS AND REFORMATORIES.—The rules of all prisons, houses of correction, or public charitable or reformatory institutions, shall provide for suitable religious instruction and ministration to the inmates. These are to have freedom of religious belief and worship, but may not interfere with proper discipline.

WILLS AND TESTAMENTS.—Every person of twenty-one years of age, and sound mind (married women included), may dispose of any right in property by will in writing, signed by the testator and subscribed in his presence by three credible witnesses. No seal is required. Husband or wife may waive the provisions of a will and take the share allowed them respectively by law.

CHARITABLE BEQUESTS.—These are governed by the principles of the common law. The courts will order them to be executed according to the true intent and will let no trust lapse for want of a trustee (2 N. H., 21-55; N. H., 463-470—36; N. H., 139).

The following is a rough estimate of the nationality of the Catholic population of the diocese: French Canadians





Did you like this content? Please help keep us ad-free
Enjoying this content?  Please support our mission!