Goffstown New Hampshire’s Uncanoonuc Mountains

In the southwest end of the town of Goffstown, New Hampshire, and 3 miles west of Manchester, New Hampshire are found two softly rounded twin mounts, called the Uncanoonuc (uhn-kuh-NOO-nuhk) Mountains.

Every source I could find states that the name was derived from a native American word meaning a woman’s bosom.  At the base of these mountains can be found the 23-acre Uncanoonuc Lake, which has a maximum depth of 10 feet. [Editor’s note: The book, “The Uncanoonuc Mountains,” by George V. Hamlin, 1913″ states that Uncannonuc comes from the Massachusett (Massachusee tribe) Indian world Kuncannowet.]

The elevation of the north peak is 1,320 feet/420 meters, and the elevation of the south peak is 1,321 feet (403 meters). In past years these mountains paid host to an hotel, and an incline railroad (both completed in 1907), both of which no longer exist.  Today much of the land in these mountains are private property, however there are public hiking trails.

Poet, Sam Walter Foss, wrote of these mountains:
They stood there in the distance, mysterious and lone,
Each with a hazy vapor above its towering dome;
They stood like barriers between the unknown and the known,
The Uncanoonuc Mountains which I used to see from home.
And in fancy on the thither side, it was my wont to roam;
I saw the glories of the world upon the other side
Of the Uncanoonuc Mountains which I used to see from home

One misty mountain overpassed upon the march of time,
Another summit breaks in view, and onward still I roam–
Another mountain in the mist which beckons me to climb,
Like the Uncanoonuc Mountains which I used to see from home

*Additional Reading*

Incline Railroad on Uncanoonuc Mountain

Photographs from North Peak, Uncanoonuc Mountain

Addendum: One of my readers indicated that a relative of his was learning the language of the Native People of New Hampshire and that Uncanoonuc was not one of their words.  To counter this statement, there were many local dialects and in fact, the dialect local to what is now New Hampshire and the region of the Uncanoonucs has been lost in time.  So we are truly not able to prove or disprove that the term meaning is not correct.

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