Sunapee, New Hampshire

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Sunapee, New Hampshire
Official seal of Sunapee, New Hampshire
Location in Sullivan County and the state of New Hampshire.
Location in Sullivan County and the state of New Hampshire.
Coordinates: 43°23′15″N 72°05′16″W / 43.38750°N 72.08778°W / 43.38750; -72.08778Coordinates: 43°23′15″N 72°05′16″W / 43.38750°N 72.08778°W / 43.38750; -72.08778
CountryUnited States
StateNew Hampshire
Georges Mills
 • Board of selectmenJoshua Trow, Chair
Suzanne Gottling
John Augustine
Frederick C. Gallup
Shane Hastings
 • Town ManagerDonna Nashawaty
 • Total25.2 sq mi (65.3 km2)
 • Land21.1 sq mi (54.7 km2)
 • Water4.1 sq mi (10.6 km2)  16.20%
1,020 ft (310 m)
 • Total3,365
 • Density159/sq mi (61.5/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP codes
03782 (Sunapee)
03751 (Georges Mills)
Area code(s)603
FIPS code33-75060
GNIS feature ID0873732

Sunapee is a town in Sullivan County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 3,365 at the 2010 census.[1] Sunapee is home to part of Lake Sunapee. The town includes the village of Georges Mills.


Sunapee Village in 1909

Like many other towns, this one went through name changes before its incorporation in 1781: "Saville" in 1768, "Corey's Town", and then "Wendell", for one of the Masonian Proprietors, John Wendell. The marsh near Sunapee Middle High School still bears Wendell's name. The name "Sunapee" was substituted for "Wendell" by the legislature in 1850. The town, Lake Sunapee and Mount Sunapee share the name which comes from the Algonquian Indian words "suna" meaning "goose", and "apee", meaning "lake". The Indians called the area "Lake of the Wild Goose" because it is shaped like a goose, with the beak being in Sunapee Harbor.

Sunapee, 2005

Before Sunapee was a sizable tourist attraction, it was an industrial area. One factory produced 110 clothespins a minute. After the factories faded away, the major attraction became the pristine lake, once surrounded by a number of grand hotels. People used large ferries to get from hotel to hotel around the lake, but the ferries were mostly gone by 1915, when the automobile was widely introduced to the area. Lake Sunapee is the only lake in New Hampshire with three working lighthouses, which were originally built in the 1890s by the Woodsum brothers and are currently maintained by the Lake Sunapee Protective Association.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 25.2 square miles (65.3 km2), of which 21.1 sq mi (54.6 km2) is land and 4.1 sq mi (10.6 km2) is water, comprising 16.20% of the town.[1] Sunapee is drained by the Sugar River. The highest point in town is about 1,600 feet (490 m) above sea level, along the town's northern border, just north of Ledge Pond.

Adjacent municipalities[edit]


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 20173,450[2]2.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[3]
New Safety Services facility, completed August 2006

As of the census of 2010, there were 3,365 people, 1,443 households, and 973 families residing in the town. The population density was 159.5 people per square mile (61.5/km²). There were 2,431 housing units at an average density of 115.2 per square mile (44.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 97.6% White, 0.2% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.3% some other race, and 1.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.8% of the population.[4]

Sunapee Harbor c. 1905

There were 1,443 households, out of which 27.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.2% were headed by married couples living together, 7.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.6% were non-families. 25.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.8% were someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31, and the average family size was 2.74.[4]

In the town, the population was spread out with 19.6% under the age of 18, 6.7% from 18 to 24, 21.7% from 25 to 44, 32.8% from 45 to 64, and 19.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 46.2 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.9 males.[4]

George's Mills c. 1905

For the period 2007-11, the estimated median annual income for a household in the town was $66,741, and the median income for a family was $78,973. Male full-time workers had a median income of $52,870 versus $42,784 for females. The per capita income for the town was $38,737. About 0.8% of families and 6.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.7% of those under age 18 and 2.3% of those age 65 or over.[5]

Fire safety[edit]

The town of Sunapee maintains a volunteer Fire Safety Program.


Sunapee is represented in the New Hampshire General Court by Republican Bob Odell in the Senate.

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Sunapee town, Sullivan County, New Hampshire". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved February 4, 2013.
  2. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2017 (PEPANNRES): Minor Civil Divisions – New Hampshire". Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  3. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Sunapee town, Sullivan County, New Hampshire". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved February 4, 2013.
  5. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics: 2007-2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP03): Sunapee town, Sullivan County, New Hampshire". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved February 4, 2013.
  6. ^ Parker, Ian (August 28, 2017). "Ken Burn's American Canon". The New Yorker. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  7. ^, January 21, 2012
  8. ^ Oprah Winfrey Network

External links[edit]