Established in 1763, the town was once known as Mast Camp, because it was the shipping point for the tall masts floated down the river by English settlers. Incorporated in 1765 by Colonial Governor Benning Wentworth, it was named for Sir Samuel Cornish, a distinguished vice-admiral of the Royal Navy.
Cornish also became a well-known summer resort for artists and writers. Seeking a studio away from the summer heat of New York City, sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens began coming to Cornish in 1885. Artist friends followed him, transforming the area into a popular artists’ colony. For information on the Cornish Colony click here. Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site in Cornish is at his former home and studio, and hosts summer concerts as well as ongoing exhibits. To visit the website for Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site click here.
Cornish is the site of the longest two-span covered bridge in the world. The Cornish-Windsor Covered Bridge, which spans the Connecticut River was built in 1866 at an original cost of $9,000. It was re-built in 1988 at a cost in excess of $4,000,000. It was the longest covered bridge in the United States until 2008 when the Smolen-Gulf Bridge was opened in Ohio. That bridge is a 4-span covered bridge. The Cornish-Windsor Covered Bridge has the longest single covered span (204 feet) still carrying daily automobile traffic. It has been designated a “National Civil Engineering Landmark” by the American Society of Civil Engineers. In all, Cornish is home to four covered bridges. No town in New Hampshire has more. For further information click here.
Cornish celebrates summer with its annual Cornish Fair, held each year the third weekend in August. To visit our website click here.
Trinity Church was built after the plans of Robert Tabor, a carpenter and builder. It was begun in 1803 and completed in 1808. In 1980 it was added to the National Register of Historic Places. In 1984-1985 it was reconstructed by Peter Hoe Burling, a local resident. In 2004, Burling proposed donating the church to the Town. But, it wasn’t until 2009 that at Town Meeting the Town accepted the church for “civic purposes for the residents of the Town of Cornish, and for others.” Since then, it has become a popular location for weddings. For rates and availability, please call the Cornish Town Office at (603)675-5611 To see our ad click here.
To visit the State of New Hampshire profile for Cornish, click here.
Cornish is located along the Connecticut River which is popular for canoeing. The river is subject to extremes in the water flow in part due to the release of water from the hydro-electric Wilder Dam. To get current information from the dam operator, click here.
Want to know about Cornish weather? Click here to visit the National Weather Service.
To see a Cornish photo gallery, click here.
For a road map of Cornish, click here.
Cornish is home to some talented cooks. To see some of their favorite recipes, click here.
The latitude of Cornish is 43.478N.
The longitude is -72.316W.