Tilton, New Hampshire

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Tilton is a town located on the Winnipesaukee River in Belknap County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 3,477 at the 2000 census. The 2009 population was estimated to be 3,682.[1] It includes the village of Lochmere. Tilton is home to the Tilton School, a private preparatory school.

Contents

History

Originally the southern part of Sanbornton, the present area of Tilton was known as Sanbornton Bridge and Bridge Village. [2] These two names refer to the bridge, built in 1763, that crossed the Winnipesaukee River from Canterbury to Sanbornton and onto what is presently Main Street in Tilton.[3] In 1869, Sanbornton Bridge was set off and incorporated as Tilton, named in honor of Nathaniel Tilton, whose grandson Charles E. Tilton was the owner of textile mills and the community's wealthiest citizen. Nathaniel Tilton established an iron foundry and the area's first hotel, the Dexter House. Charles E. Tilton donated many statues to the town, a unique feature, and his estate is now part of the Tilton School. Tilton Hall, his former mansion built in 1861, houses the Lucian Hunt Library. The attached carriage house was renovated in 1980 to become the Helene Grant Daly Art Center.

Charles E. Tilton also donated what is perhaps the most notable landmark in the area, the hilltop Memorial Arch, located in the neighboring town of Northfield, across the Winnipesaukee River from the center of Tilton. The Roman arch replica was built in the late 1800s as a memorial to his ancestors. It is built of Concord granite, 50 feet (15 m) high and 40 feet (12 m) wide.

Main Street in 1909

Tilton Island Park c. 1908

View of the mills in 1908

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 12.0 square miles (31 km2), of which 11.4 sq mi (30 km2) is land and 0.6 sq mi (1.6 km2) is water, comprising 4.82% of the town. Tilton is drained by the Winnipesaukee River. It is bounded in the east by Silver and Winnisquam lakes.

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