History of Manchester
The area was first inhabited by the Pennacook Indians, who named it Namoskeag, which means “a good place to fish.”
The area was settled by John Goffe in 1722. He later built a dam and sawmill there and this community was called Old Harry’s Town.
In 1807, Samuel Blodget opened a canal and lock system to allow vessels passage around the falls that are located in the area, as he wanted to turn the city into a great industrial center of the north. He therefore named it after Manchester, England, which was the industrial center of England and the first industrialized city in the world.
Efforts were made to turn the city into an industrial center. In fact, at once point the city became home to the largest cotton mill in the world. Other products made in the community included shoes, cigars, and paper. Since the mills in the city were constantly growing, there was always a demand for more workers, which is what made Manchester very attractive to immigrants. Particularly French Canadians flocked to the area.
Of course, Manchester is no longer a mill town, but the affluence of the 19th century left behind fantastic Victorian commercial, municipal, and residential architecture.
In 2009, CNN Money named Manchester the 13th best city to live in and launch a business in. It has also been voted among the most tax friendly cities in America. Forbes also ranked Manchester first in the region on its list of the cheapest places to live in America.
It was also named the "Number One Small City in the East" by Money magazine.
Manchester is nicknamed the Queen City and according to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 35 square miles.
Even though Queen City is the official nickname of Manchester, it is also popularly known as ManchVegas. This nickname comes from the fact that there was a very lucrative illegal gambling business being run in the city during the late 1980s. There were many pizza shops and bars in the area that had video poker machines that would pay out real money to people who won when playing them.
Following a city-wide crackdown on these machines, the city got its nickname of ManchVegas. It was later adopted in order to mock and lightly make fun of the fact that there are not too many interesting entertainment opportunities in the city. It was then adopted as a lampoon of the city's limited entertainment opportunities.