Rochester is a city in Strafford County, New Hampshire, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 29,752, and in 2019 the estimated population was 31,526. The city includes the villages of East Rochester, Gonic, and North Rochester. Rochester is home to Skyhaven Airport.
Rochester was once inhabited by Abenaki Indians of the Pennacook tribe. They fished, hunted and farmed, moving locations when their agriculture exhausted the soil for growing pumpkins, squash, beans and maize. Gonic was called Squanamagonic, meaning "the water of the clay place hill."
The town was one of four granted by Colonial Governor Samuel Shute of Massachusetts and New Hampshire during his brief term. Incorporated in 1722, it was named for his close friend, Laurence Hyde, Earl of Rochester and brother-in-law to King James II. As was customary, tall white pine trees were reserved for use as masts by the Royal Navy. But hostility with the Abenaki delayed settlement until 1728, although attacks would continue until 1748. Early dwellings clustered together for protection, beginning near Haven Hill.