New Hampshire’s Runner – Henri Renaud
It was April 19, 1909, when Nashua’s Henri Renaud won the 13th running of the Boston Marathon, the first and only resident of New Hampshire to win the race. Renaud was 19 years old and working at the Nashua Manufacturing Company when he registered for the marathon a mere two weeks before the race. He had only recently completed his first road race, a four-miler, in the late summer of 1908, in a time of 29 minutes, 30 seconds, according to a Nashua Telegraph article dated April 20, 1909. Renaud went on to run his first marathon in January 1909, and told the Telegraph that his father convinced him to run in Boston. In addition to beating his first marathon time, he won, in 2 hours, 53 minutes, 36.8 seconds. Today, Renaud is still considered a local hero to New Hampshire runners. Each May, the Gate City Striders running club honors the top male and female finishers from New Hampshire in that year’s Boston Marathon with its Henri Renaud Memorial New Hampshire Marathon Awards. The Henri Renaud Awards were first presented in 2009—100 years after his acclaimed win.