Jefferson is a town in Coos County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 1,107 at the 2010 census. It is home to parts of the White Mountain National Forest in the south and northeast and to Santa’s Village, a Christmas-themed amusement park. There are also several private campgrounds, motels and inns.
Jefferson is located on U.S. Route 2 between Lancaster and Randolph, near the midpoint between the Vermont and Maine borders. Set astride the broad Israel River valley, the town commands remarkable views of the Presidential Range and other White Mountain summits. Mount Starr King, with an elevation of 3,907 feet (1,191 m) above sea level and named for Thomas Starr King, is the highest point in town, near the town’s northern border. It is regularly traversed by hikers scaling nearby 4,006-foot (1,221 m) Mount Waumbek, one of the “four-thousand footers”—the 48 peaks above 4,000 feet (1,200 m) in New Hampshire. Jefferson lies fully within the Connecticut River watershed.
In the past few years, thousands of acres of Jefferson have been sold or donated by private interests to the White Mountain National Forest. These include the Randolph Town Forest, a part of which is within the boundaries of Jefferson, the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge, and Mount Starr King.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 50.4 square miles (131 km), of which 50.2 sq mi (130 km) is land and 0.2 sq mi (0.52 km) is water, comprising 0.46% of the town.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,006 people, 407 households, and 295 families residing in the town. The population density was 20.1 people per square mile (7.7/km²). There were 582 housing units at an average density of 11.6 per square mile (4.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.31% White, 0.10% Native American, 0.10% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, and 1.39% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.10% of the population.
There were 407 households out of which 28.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.4% were married couples living together, 5.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.5% were non-families. 20.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.84.
In the town, the population was spread out with 22.0% under the age of 18, 4.5% from 18 to 24, 27.2% from 25 to 44, 32.4% from 45 to 64, and 13.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females, there were 103.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 105.0 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $41,089, and the median income for a family was $42,067. Males had a median income of $27,130 versus $21,382 for females. The per capita income for the town was $19,556. About 4.7% of families and 8.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.0% of those under age 18 and 9.9% of those age 65 or over.