Laconia, New Hampshire

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Laconia is a city in Belknap County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 16,411 at the 2000 census, which makes it the 9th-largest city in the state. The 2009 population was estimated to be 17,333.[1] It is the county seat of Belknap County.[2] Laconia, situated near Lake Winnipesaukee, includes the villages of Lakeport and Weirs Beach. Each June for nine days beginning on the Saturday of the weekend before Father's Day and ending on Father's Day, the city hosts Laconia Motorcycle Week, also more simply known as 'bike week', one of the country's largest rallies, and each winter, the Laconia World Championship Sled Dog Derby. Laconia includes a branch of the New Hampshire Community Technical Colleges.

Contents

History

A large Abenaki Indian settlement called Acquadocton Village once existed at the point now known as The Weirs, named by colonists for fishing weirs discovered at the outlet of the Winnipesaukee River. Early explorers had hoped to follow the Piscataqua River north to Lake Champlain in search of the great lakes and rivers of Canada mentioned in Indian folklore. About 1652, the Endicott surveying party visited the area, an event commemorated by Endicott Rock, a local landmark. A fort would be built at Laconia in 1746. But ongoing hostilities between the English, French, and their respective Native American allies prevented settlement until 1761, after which it remained for many years a part of Meredith and Gilford called Meredith Bridge.

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