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Lincoln is a town in Grafton Countymarker, New Hampshiremarker, United States. The population was 1,271 at the 2000 census. Lincoln, the second-largest town by area in New Hampshire, includes the village of North Lincoln and the former village site of Stillwater. The town is home to the New Hampshire Highland Games and to a portion of Franconia Notch State Parkmarker. Large portions of the town are covered by the White Mountain National Forestmarker. The Appalachian Trail crosses in the northeast. Lincoln is the location of the Loon Mountainmarker ski resort and associated recreation-centered development.


In 1764, Colonial Governor Benning Wentworth granted to a group of approximately 70 land investors from Connecticutmarker. "Lincoln" was named after Henry Fiennes Pelham-Clinton, 2nd Duke of Newcastle, 9th Earl of Lincoln — a cousin of the Wentworth governors. He held the position of Comptroller of Customs for the port of Londonmarker under George II and George III, which was important to trade between America and Englandmarker.

The town was settled about 1782. The 1790 census indicates that it had 22 inhabitants. Rocky soil yielded poor farming, but the area's abundant timber, combined with water power to run sawmills on the Pemigewasset Rivermarker and its East Branchmarker, helped Lincoln develop into a center for logging. By 1853, the Merrimack River Lumber Company was operating. The railroad transported freight, and increasingly brought tourists to the beautiful mountain region. In 1892, James E. Henry bought approximately of virgin timber and established a logging enterprise at what is today the center of Lincoln. In 1902, he built a pulp and paper mill. He erected the "Lincoln House" hotel in 1903, although a 1907 fire would nearly raze the community. Until he died in 1912, Henry controlled his company town, installing relatives in positions of civic authority.

Lincoln c.
In 1917, Henry's heirs sold the business to the Parker Young Company, which in turn sold it to the Marcalus Manufacturing Company in 1946. Franconia Paper took over in 1950, producing 150 tons of paper a day until bankruptcy in 1971, at which time new river classification standards discouraged further paper-making in Lincoln.

Tourism is today the principal business. Nearby Loon Mountainmarker ski area has long drawn winter tourism, and in recent years has attempted to convert itself into a four-season attraction. "The Flume" is one of the most visited attractions in the state. Discovered in 1808, it is a natural gorge extending at the base of Mount Libertymarker. Walls of Conway granite rise to a height of 70 to 90 feet (21 to 27 m) and are only 12 to 20 feet (2.5 to 6.0 m) apart.


A hiking trail in the area.
to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of . of it is land and of it is water, comprising 0.17% of the town. It is the second-largest town in area in New Hampshire (after Pittsburgmarker).

Lincoln is drained by the Pemigewasset Rivermarker and its East Branchmarker. Lincoln lies almost fully within the Merrimack River watershed, with the western edge of town in the Connecticut River watershed. Kancamagus Pass, elevation , is on the Kancamagus Highway at the eastern boundary. The highest point in Lincoln is either the summit of Mount Carrigainmarker, at above sea level, plus or minus , or the summit of Mount Bondmarker at .


The Flume in 1905
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,271 people, 583 households, and 324 families residing in the town. The population density was 9.7 people per square mile (3.8/km²). There were 2,339 housing units at an average density of 17.9/sq mi (6.9/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 97.40% White, 0.39% Native American, 0.87% Asian, 0.16% from other races, and 1.18% from two or more races. 0.71% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 583 households out of which 22.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.4% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 44.4% were non-families. 35.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.18 and the average family size was 2.83.

In the town the population was spread out with 19.8% under the age of 18, 7.1% from 18 to 24, 27.9% from 25 to 44, 27.9% from 45 to 64, and 17.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 99.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $28,523, and the median income for a family was $44,063. Males had a median income of $25,263 versus $22,784 for females. The per capita income for the town was $17,999. About 3.4% of families and 8.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.3% of those under age 18 and 5.5% of those age 65 or over.

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