New Hampshire is one of the most densely forested states in the country. Growing forests cover 84% of the Granite State and, as a renewable resource, supply many values to the state and regional economy.
The forest industry is the oldest land-based industry in the state. There is no New Hampshire industry that exemplifies the independent Yankee spirit more than the forest products industry. It began in 1634 when New Hampshire sent its first cargo of masts to England, destined for the great ships of the Royal Navy. By 1652, white pine was the premier mast-making material. As a result, the King decreed all mast trees growing in the colonies were the property of England.
New Hampshire's citizens strongly disagreed, and rioting broke out in Exeter and Weare. Soon after, New Hampshire's patriots joined in the American Revolution, not for tea but to protect their timber supply (source: The Lumber Cooperator 7/87).
Today, New Hampshire's forests provide a wide variety of goods to meet our everyday needs and comforts. Forests are a source of aesthetic and recreational enjoyment, a critical habitat for wildlife and a natural filter to assure water quality. Maintaining a viable forest products industry with enough economic incentive for landowners to hold and manage forest land is vital to the stewardship ethic. Opportunities exist to expand economic development through forestry while maintaining the existing forest resource base.
This directory is provided by the University of New Hampshire in partnership with the New Hampshire Division of Forests and Lands. Funding was provided by the USDA, Forest Service, Economic Action Program.