On May 1, 1769 a charter was granted to Barlow Trecothick for a town called Trecothick–the only location by that name in the world. This name remained until the town was incorporated 16 June 1802 when the name of Ellsworth was substituted.
It was originally named after Barlow Trecothick, who with John Wentworth (son of Mark Hunking, and future Governor of New Hampshire) visited England to present their petition to the king, praying for the repeal of the stamp act. Barlow, along with Wentworth were appointed “joynt and separate agents for the province” of New Hampshire at the Court of Great Britain. Barlow was a Boston merchant who later became Mayor of London and Member of Parliament, and he died childless 2 June 1775 (his wife was Grizzell Apthorpe).
Ellsworth, New Hampshire, lies in the central part of Grafton County at latitude 43 degrees 54 minutes and longitude 71 degrees 48 minutes. It is bounded north by Woodstock, east by Thornton and Campton, south by Rumney and west by Warren. The renaming of the town to Ellsworth was done so to honor Chief Justice Oliver Ellsworth of Connecticut, (third Chief Justice) who, at the time of the town's incorporation, had recently negotiated a peace treaty with France, resulting in the Louisiana Purchase.
Many settlers from western Massachusetts and Connecticut went up the Connecticut River and occupied the towns in that beautiful valley. The first permanent settlement was made in 1790 by Jonathan T. Downing who was from Gilmanton NH.
It is believed this area was popular with the Native People, as many artifacts were found here in past years. The local mountain is named Kineo, reportedly from Kunnawa, a local “chief” who hunted there. It is said that gold can be found in some of the streams.
Ellsworth's land is for the most part hard and untillable, as compared with other New Hampshire towns, and the greater part of the land was covered with forest. Even by 1880 Ellsworth had a population of only “209 souls.” In 2005 only 86 people lived in this community (a great increase from the 13 living there in 1970).