Lyme, New Hampshire

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Lyme, New Hampshire
Location in Grafton County, New Hampshire
Location in Grafton County, New Hampshire
Coordinates: 43°48′37″N 72°09′22″W / 43.81028°N 72.15611°W / 43.81028; -72.15611Coordinates: 43°48′37″N 72°09′22″W / 43.81028°N 72.15611°W / 43.81028; -72.15611
Country United States
State New Hampshire
County Grafton
Incorporated 1761
 • Board of Selectmen Susan J. MacKenzie, Chair
Patricia G. Jenks
Charles J. Smith
 • Total 54.7 sq mi (141.7 km2)
 • Land 53.8 sq mi (139.4 km2)
 • Water 0.9 sq mi (2.3 km2)  1.62%
Elevation 548 ft (167 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 1,716
 • Estimate (2015) 1,680
 • Density 31/sq mi (12.0/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 03768, 03769
Area code(s) 603
FIPS code 33-44260
GNIS feature ID 0873654

Lyme is a town along the Connecticut River in Grafton County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 1,716 as of the 2010 census,[1] with an estimated population of 1,680 in 2015.[2] Lyme is home to the Chaffee Natural Conservation Area. The Dartmouth Skiway is in the eastern part of town, near the village of Lyme Center. The Appalachian Trail also crosses the town in the east.


Cannon on the Lyme town green
Central Market wagon c. 1910, Photo: Lyme Historians

This was once a home to Abenaki Indians, including a band of Sokokis near Post Pond at a place they called Ordanakis. Later, it would be another of many towns granted by Colonial Governor Benning Wentworth along the Connecticut River in 1761. The town encompasses land that, prior to the Lyme's founding, was called Tinkertown. Lyme takes its name from Old Lyme, Connecticut, which lies at the mouth of the Connecticut River. Most of the grantees were from Palmer and Brimfield in Massachusetts, or from Londonderry. In the late 1770s, the town petitioned (ultimately unsuccessfully) to join Vermont.

Stagecoaches traveling the old "Boston Turnpike" from Montreal in the 1830s passed through Lyme, stopping at the Lyme Inn (recently renovated), built in 1809.[3] Next door to the inn is the 200-year-old Congregational Church, with a steeple bell cast by Paul Revere (which is out of order and no longer tolls the hour).[3] Behind the church is a row of horse sheds dating from 1810, each with the name of the original owner inscribed above the door. The scenic town common is surrounded by antique architecture.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 54.7 square miles (141.7 km2), of which 53.8 square miles (139.3 km2) is land and 0.9 square miles (2.3 km2) is water, comprising 1.62% of the town.[4] Lyme is drained by Hewes, Grant and Trout brooks, all flowing to the Connecticut River, which forms the western boundary of the town (and of the state of New Hampshire).

The Lyme Green occupies the center of the village of Lyme, located about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) east of the Connecticut River.

Lyme is a rural town. The main ponds in the town are Post Pond, Pout Pond, Trout Pond, Cummins Pond, and Reservoir Pond. Holts Ledge is a cliff that views east and is home to the Dartmouth Skiway. The edge of the cliff is fenced to protect falcons and other wild animals. The highest point in town is the summit of Smarts Mountain, at 3,238 feet (987 m) above sea level.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 816
1800 1,318 61.5%
1810 1,670 26.7%
1820 1,824 9.2%
1830 1,804 −1.1%
1840 1,785 −1.1%
1850 1,617 −9.4%
1860 1,572 −2.8%
1870 1,358 −13.6%
1880 1,313 −3.3%
1890 1,154 −12.1%
1900 1,080 −6.4%
1910 1,007 −6.8%
1920 891 −11.5%
1930 830 −6.8%
1940 965 16.3%
1950 924 −4.2%
1960 1,026 11.0%
1970 1,112 8.4%
1980 1,289 15.9%
1990 1,496 16.1%
2000 1,679 12.2%
2010 1,716 2.2%
Est. 2015 1,680 [2] −2.1%
U.S. Decennial Census[5]
Lyme Common

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 1,679 people, 678 households, and 475 families residing in the town. The population density was 31.2 people per square mile (12.0/km²). There were 752 housing units at an average density of 14.0 per square mile (5.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.57% White, 0.42% African American, 0.06% Native American, 0.54% Asian, 0.06% from other races, and 0.36% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.36% of the population.

Street scene, c. 1910, Photo: Lyme Historians

There were 678 households out of which 31.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.1% were married couples living together, 6.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.9% were non-families. 24.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.96.

In the town the population was spread out with 25.5% under the age of 18, 3.3% from 18 to 24, 25.4% from 25 to 44, 31.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 97.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.0 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $57,250, and the median income for a family was $64,531. Males had a median income of $40,789 versus $32,917 for females. The per capita income for the town was $35,887. About 1.7% of families and 4.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.4% of those under age 18 and 6.2% of those age 65 or over.

Lyme is home to many of the physicians and professors from Dartmouth College and has high real estate values as a result.[citation needed]


Lyme has a public elementary school and a private elementary school. There are currently around 200 students attending the public elementary school. The school was ranked 11th out of 108 NH schools in NECAPS mathematics and reading testing in the middle school. Once a pupil reaches ninth grade, students from Lyme either attend Thetford Academy in Thetford, Vermont (across the Connecticut River), Hanover High School in Hanover, New Hampshire (about 10 miles south of Lyme), Hartford High School in Hartford, Vermont, Lebanon High School in Lebanon, New Hampshire, St. Johnsbury Academy in St. Johnsbury, Vermont or various private high schools. Typically attendance is split somewhat evenly between Thetford Academy and Hanover High, with the few remaining students going elsewhere.

Sites of interest[edit]

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Lyme town, Grafton County, New Hampshire". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved August 24, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Cole, Luane ed. Patterns and Pieces. Phoenix Publishing: Canaan, NH. 1976.
  4. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001) - Lyme town, New Hampshire". U.S. Census Bureau American Factfinder. Retrieved November 13, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2016. 
  6. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

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