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Mason is a town in Hillsborough Countymarker, New Hampshiremarker, United Statesmarker. The population was 1,147 at the 2000 census. Mason, together with Wiltonmarker, is home to Russell-Abbott State Forest.


Wolf Rock in 1909
Mason was first known as "Number One", the first in a line of border towns including area allotted to this state by Massachusettsmarker upon establishment of New Hampshiremarker as a separate state in 1741. The town's charter was granted in 1749 by Colonial Governor Benning Wentworth, and in 1768 his nephew, Governor John Wentworth, named it in honor of New Hampshire's founder, Captain John Mason. Captain Mason was the holder of patent with title to the land that became New Hampshire. Greenvillemarker would be set off from Mason in 1872.

Near the town's center is the boyhood home of Samuel Wilson, the meat-supplier who is believed to have inspired the Uncle Sam character. The private house is today identified by a state historical marker. Another prominent local figure was Elizabeth Orton Jones, an author, illustrator and teacher better known as "Twig", instrumental in recording the history of the town. "Pickity Place", a local cottage built in 1786, was the model for the grandmother's house in Jones' 1948 illustrated version of Little Red Riding Hood. It was also the home of Ron Harry, Boston Garden organist from 1983-1995 and for the Boston Celtics in the TD Banknorth Garden until his death in 2004.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of , of which is land and (0.25%) is water. Mason is drained by Spaulding Brook. The town's highest point is above sea level, on an unnamed summit near the border with Greenville.


Drinking Trough in 1909
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,147 people, 433 households, and 328 families residing in the town. The population density was 48.0 people per square mile (18.5/km²). There were 455 housing units at an average density of 19.0/sq mi (7.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.08% White, 0.17% African American, 0.09% Native American, 0.44% Asian, 0.44% Pacific Islander, and 0.78% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.96% of the population.

There were 433 households out of which 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.8% were married couples living together, 5.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.2% were non-families. 18.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.65 and the average family size was 3.02.

In the town, the population was spread out with 24.3% under the age of 18, 5.5% from 18 to 24, 33.0% from 25 to 44, 28.8% from 45 to 64, and 8.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 106.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 106.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $60,433, and the median income for a family was $61,908. Males had a median income of $43,558 versus $26,042 for females. The per capita income for the town was $28,503. About 3.6% of families and 3.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.3% of those under age 18 and 4.9% of those age 65 or over.

Town facilities

Mason is immediately north of the Massachusetts border, with the center of town approximately 5 kilometers from the state line. At the center of town are five public buildings: the library, elementary school, meetinghouse, church, and police station, all situated where Darling Hill, Old Ashby, Merriam Hill, Meetinghouse Hill and Valley roads meet. The public high school is Mascenic Regional High School, located to the west in New Ipswichmarker. Also to the west is Greenville, location of the shared post office. On Depot Road, a kilometer down the hill from town center, is the Volunteer Fire and EMS Department and Town Highway Department.


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