NHES and ELMI agency logos
New Hampshire Employment Security - an official New Hampshire Government web site
Smaller text size Reset text size Larger text size
link to website translation page

ELMI Home > Products > Community Profiles >

Community Profiles

Canaan, NH

canaan New Hampshire Community Profile Community Contact Town of Canaan
Mike Samson, Town Administrator
PO Box 38
Canaan, NH 03741
Telephone (603) 523-4501
Fax (603) 523-4526
E-mail townadmin@canaannh.org
Web Site www.canaannh.org

Municipal Office Hours Town Office: Monday through Friday, 8 am - 4 pm; Town Clerk, Tax Collector: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 8 am - 4 pm, Tuesday, Thursday, 8 am - 1 pm, Saturday, 8 am - 12 noon

County Grafton
Labor Market Area Lebanon, NH-VT Micropolitan NECTA, NH part
Tourism Region Dartmouth-Lake Sunapee
Planning Commission Upper Valley Lake Sunapee
Regional Development Grafton County Economic Development Council

Election Districts
US Congress District District 2
Executive Council District District 1
State Senate District District 5
State Representative Grafton County Districts 11, 16

Incorporated: 1761
Origin: First chartered in 1761, the town probably took its name from the hometown of early settlers from Canaan, Connecticut. Not all the grantees became permanent settlers, and a new charter was issued in 1769. According to the Canaan Historical Society, the first train passed through in November 1847 with Daniel Webster on board, and the railroad operations sparked rapid business growth in Canaan Village. In September 1907, Canaan was the site of a tragic train accident, the collision of a passenger train and a freight, resulting in 25 dead and an equal number injured.
Villages and Place Names: Canaan Center, Canaan Street, West Canaan
Population, Year of the First Census Taken: 504 residents in 1790
Population Trends: Population change for Canaan totaled 1,976 over 49 years, from 1,923 in 1970 to 3,899 in 2019. The largest decennial percent change was a 28 percent increase between 1970 and 1980. The 2019 Census estimate for Canaan was 3,899 residents, which rank 99th among New Hampshire's incorporated cities and towns.
Population Density and Land Area, 2019 (US Census Bureau): 73.1 persons per square mile of land area. Canaan contains 53.3 square miles of land area and 1.8 square miles of inland water area.

Municipal Services
Type of Government Selectmen
Budget: Municipal Appropriations, 2019 $4,661,101
Budget: School Appropriations, 2019 $7,434,777
Zoning Ordinance None
Master Plan 2006
Capitol Improvement Plan Yes
Industrial Plans Reviewed By Planning Board
Boards and Commissions
Elected:Selectmen; Planning; Budget; Library; Cemetery; Trust Funds; Checklist
Appointed:Conservation; Recreation; Historic District; Capital Improvement; Meeting House Preservation; Museum Curators
Public Library Canaan Town

Emergency Services
Police Department Full-time
Fire Department Volunteer
Emergency Medical Service Volunteer
Nearest Hospital(s) Distance Staffed Beds
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Med Ctr, Lebanon 17 miles 406
Alice Peck Day Memorial, Lebanon 15 miles 25

Electric Supplier NH Electric Coop; Liberty Utilities
Natural Gas Supplier None
Water Supplier Canaan Water Department
Sanitation Canaan Sewer Dept
Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant Yes
Solid Waste Disposal
Curbside Trash PickupNone
Pay-As-You-Throw ProgramNo
Recycling ProgramVoluntary
Telephone Company Fairpoint
Cellular Telephone Access Yes
Cable Television Access Yes
Public Access Television Station No
High Speed Internet Service:

(NH Dept. of Revenue Administration) Property Taxes
2019 Total Tax Rate (per $1,000 of value) $32.93
2019 Equalization Ratio 84.5
2019 Full Value Tax Rate (per $1,000 of value) $27.48
2019 Percent of Local Assessed Value by Property Type
Residential Land and Buildings83.6%
Commercial Land and Buildings13.8%
Public Utilities, Current Use, and Other2.6%

(ACS 2015-2019) Housing
Total Housing Units 1,936
Single-Family Units, Detached or Attached 1,393
Units in Multiple-Family Structures:  
Two to Four Units in Structure 60
Five or More Units in Structure 154
Mobile Homes and Other Housing Units 329
(US Census Bureau) Population
(1-year Estimates/Decennial)
Total Population Community County
2019 3,899 89,886
2010 3,909 89,118
2000 3,320 81,826
1990 3,048 74,998
1980 2,456 65,806
1970 1,923 54,914
Demographics, American Community Survey (ACS) 2015-2019
Population by Gender
Male:   2,013 Female:   1,907
Population by Age Group
Under age 5 89
Age 5 to 19 694
Age 20 to 34 743
Age 35 to 54 1,113
Age 55 to 64 720
Age 65 and over 561
Median Age 44.2 years
Educational Attainment, population 25 years and over
High school graduate or higher 88.9%
Bachelor's degree or higher 28.0%

(ACS 2015-2019) Income, Inflation Adjusted $
Per capita income $36,132
Median family income $88,663
Median household income $77,175
Median Earnings, full-time, year-round workers, 16 years ad over
Male $53,834
Female $45,854
Individuals below the poverty level 3.8%

(NHES - ELMI) Labor Force
Annual Average 2009 2019
Civilian Labor Force 2,268 2,027
Employed 2,152 1,986
Unemployed 116 41
Unemployment Rate 5.1% 2.0%

(NHES - ELMI) Employment & Wages
Annual Average Covered Employment 2009 2019
Goods Producing Industries
Average Employment 85 69
Average Weekly Wage $765 $959
Service Providing Industries
Average Employment 279 336
Average Weekly Wage $639 $730
Total Private Industry
Average Employment 364 404
Average Weekly Wage $668 $769
Government (Federal, State, and Local)
Average Employment 259 267
Average Weekly Wage $683 $815
Total, Private plus Government
Average Employment 624 672
Average Weekly Wage $674 $787

If "n" appears, data does not meet disclosure standards.

(NH Dept. of Education) Education and Child Care
Schools students attend: Grades K-12 are part of Mascoma Valley Regional (Canaan, Dorchester, Enfield, Grafton, Orange) SAU 62
Career Technology Center(s): Hartford Area Career & Technology Center (VT) Region: 7
Educational Facilities (includes Charter Schools) Elementary Middle/Junior High High School Private/Parochial
Number of Schools 1 1 1 1
Grade Levels P K 1-4 5-8 9-12 6-9
Total Enrollment 258 362 321 25
2020 NH Licensed Child Care Facilities (Bureau of Child Care Licensing): Total Facilities: 1 Total Capacity: 17
Nearest Community/Technical College: River Valley
Nearest Colleges or Universities: Dartmouth; Colby-Sawyer

Largest Businesses Product/Service Employees Established
Cardigan School Private school 135
Harris Rebar Steel fabrication 40 1999
Halo Education systems 10
Mascoma Community Health Center Health care services 18 2017
Town of Canaan Municipal services 20 1761
Mascoma Valley Regional School District Education 172
MTD Building Contractors Property maintenance 21
Papa Z's Convenience store 10
Canaan Hardware Hardware store 6
Mascoma Savings Bank Banking services 5

Employer Information Supplied by Municipality

(Distance estimated from city/town hall) Transportation
Road Access US Routes 4
State Routes 118
Nearest Interstate, Exit I-89, Exit 17
Distance 10 miles
Railroad No
Public Transportation Advance Transit
Nearest Public Use Airport, General Aviation
Lebanon MunicipalRunway5,496 ft. asphalt
Lighted? Yes Navigational Aids? Yes
Nearest Airport with Scheduled Service
Lebanon Municipal Distance 18 miles
Number of Passenger Airlines Serving Airport 1
Driving distance to selected cities:
Manchester, NH 63 miles
Portland, ME 156 miles
Boston, MA 114 miles
New York City, NY 280 miles
Montreal, Quebec 201 miles

(ACS 2015-2019) Commuting to Work
Workers 16 years and over
Drove alone, car/truck/van 79.5%
Carpooled, car/truck/van 10.1%
Public transportation 0.2%
Walked 6.1%
Other Means 4.1%
Worked at home 9.8%
Mean Travel Time to Work 24.0 minutes
Percent of Working Residents: (ACS 2015-2019)
Working in community of residence 22.2%
Commuting to another NH community 68.0%
Commuting out-of-state 9.8%
Recreation, Attractions, and Events
X Municipal Parks
Boys Club/Girls Club
Golf Courses
Swimming: Indoor Facility
X Swimming: Outdoor Facility
Tennis Courts: Indoor Facility
Tennis Courts: Outdoor Facility
Ice Skating Rink: Indoor Facility
Bowling Facilities
X Museums
Performing Arts Facilities
Tourist Attractions
X Youth Organizations (i.e., Scouts, 4-H)
X Youth Sports: Baseball
X Youth Sports: Soccer
Youth Sports: Football
X Youth Sports: Basketball
Youth Sports: Hockey
X Campgrounds
X Fishing/Hunting
X Boating/Marinas
X Snowmobile Trails
X Bicycle Trails
X Cross Country Skiing
X Beach or Waterfront Recreational Area
Overnight or Day Camps
Nearest Ski Area(s): Dartmouth Skiway

Economic & Labor Market Information Bureau, NH Employment Security, 2021. Community Response Received 10/19/20

All information regarding the communities is from sources deemed reliable and is submitted subject to errors, omissions, modifications, and withdrawals without notice. No warranty or representation is made as to the accuracy of the information contained herein. Specific questions regarding individual cities and towns should be directed to the community contact.


Translation Resources and Disclaimer

New Hampshire Employment Security (NHES)
45 South Fruit Street  |  Concord NH 03301  |  603-224-3311  |  1-800-852-3400
TDD Access: Relay NH 1-800-735-2964