Located on the Merrimack River, Concord is the third largest city in New Hampshire. Since 1808, it has been the state capital.
The city has had several names during its history. Upon its founding in 1727, it was Penacook or Pennycook (Algonkian for "bottom of a hill"). It switched to Rumford in 1733 when it incorporated as a township, and finally to Concord in 1765.
The New Hampshire State House, built in 1819 from granite quarried in the vicinity, is the oldest state capitol in which the legislative
bodies meet in their original chambers. Granite for the Library of Congress was quarried near Concord.
In the 19th century, the city was well known for carriage making, and the "Concord coaches" became world famous. Examples of Concord coaches can
be found in the Museum of New Hampshire History. Franklin Pierce, the nation's 14th president, made his home in Concord and the Pierce Manse is open to the public.
A community of Shakers was established a few miles northeast of Concord in Canterbury, in the 1790s. Today Canterbury Shaker Village is
a museum that interprets Shaker life. Concord was also the home of teacher/astronaut Christa McAuliffe, who died in the Columbia space
shuttle disaster in 1987. The Christa McAuliffe Planetarium, built in her memory, is the nation's most technologically sophisticated