The Town of Strafford was for a long time part of Barrington and settled prior to the Revolution. It was incorporated as a separate town in 1820, taking its name from the county in which it is located. Earl of Strafford was a title of the Wentworth family in England. Strafford, Vermont, is also named for the family. The name was adopted by a state militia company in Dover, the Strafford Guards, who later became part of the New Hampshire National Guard. The company served as escort for the Marquis de Lafayette on his visit to America, and saw service in the Civil War.