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The city of Somersworth, in Strafford County, is the smallest in area, and has the third-lowest population of New Hampshire’s thirteen cities. When the area was first settled before 1700, Somersworth was a part of Dover known as Sligo. In 1729, it was organized as the parish of Summersworth, because ministers would preach there during the summer months. In 1754, it was incorporated as a town by Colonial Governor Benning Wentworth, although the spelling was changed due to a clerical error. Until it was incorporated as a city in 1893, it was also known as Great Falls. Somersworth is located at a place where the Salmon Falls River drops by one hundred feet over one mile, powering several mills. Somersworth is bordered by Rollinsford, which was part of Somersworth until 1849, the city of Rochester to the northwest, and Berwick, Maine, across the Salmon Falls River. John Sullivan, a Revolutionary War general and delegate to the Continental Congress, as well as Fred H. Brown, the 59th governor of New Hampshire, were residents of Somersworth.


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