What Was Daily Life Like in Colonial New Hampshire?

Daily life in colonial New Hampshire differed depending on socioeconomic status, gender and location; men living closer to the shore held maritime jobs or worked as farmers, while women and girls tended to domestic chores, including cooking and sewing. Agriculture and fishing formed the primary part of colonial New Hampshire’s economy. Men and boys living in coastal areas served in professions such as shipbuilding and sailing, while those living near cities engaged in the sale and trade of many products, including syrup and rum.

Families in colonial New Hampshire took up residences in various styles of homes. Those living in areas outside city suburbs generally lived in farm houses, with colonial-style architecture. Wealthy New Hampshire citizens lived in two-story homes, but most occupied single-story houses, primarily log cabins. The nature of work primarily dictated chores and responsibilities for these families.

New Hampshire farmers, all male, worked long hours out in the fields. They typically left at dawn, returning after dusk. Grown men worked, along with boys of poor families. Families with adequate financial resources sent their children to school. In addition to work, religion played an important role in the lives of New Hampshire citizens. Under law, New Hampshire towns with at least 50 homes contained at least one schoolhouse and a church. Citizens attended church regularly and practiced Puritanism.