Why is Emax Located in
Peterborough, New Hampshire?

Well, have you ever been to Peterborough? If you have, then maybe you understand. If you haven’t, then please allow us a moment to explain.

Peterborough is a quaint New England town located where the Contoocook River and Nubanusit River meet. Nearby, the stone-capped peak of Mt. Monadnock, the second most climbed mountain in the world, watches over Peterborough and nearby towns.

It’s a region filled with Native American names, maple trees, covered bridges, and kids—both young and old—and their pet dogs. Early spring is “sugaring” season, when maple sap is gathered and boiled down to maple syrup—and later served at the annual Rotary Club pancake breakfast on Easter morning. By summer, landscapes are filled with flowers blooming in celebration of the outdoors, where folks hike, bicycle, kayak, and fly-fish with great passion. Come fall, the leaves on the maple trees change to blazing colors that are far too brilliant for any painter’s canvas to truly capture. And winter brings a Currier-and-Ives atmosphere to the holidays, punctuated by white lights and candles in nearly every window, followed by downhill and cross-country skiing, sledding, and the warmth of seasoned wood burning in cast-iron stoves.

Most folks here call Peterborough “Our Town,” because it was Thornton Wilder’s stay in Peterborough that inspired his Pulitzer Prize-winning play by that name. In fact, writing and the arts have long been an important part of Peterborough. It is home to the MacDowell Colony, an artist retreat founded in 1907 by composer Edward MacDowell’s wife, Marian, with help from, among others, Grover Cleveland and Andrew Carnegie. Having hosted more than 6,000 artists of all kinds over the years (that’s more than the population of Peterborough itself), it’s the oldest artists’ colony in the United States.

Older still, is the Peterborough Library, which was the first publicly supported library in the United States. Yes, people here like to read. Some of them like to write, too. For example, Elizabeth Marshall Thomas, a town selectman (instead of a mayor, we have a board of selectmen) authored the best-selling The Hidden Life of Dogs. Besides being an interesting book about dogs, it defined that what dogs want most is to be with other dogs. That inspired some folks in the computer and software industry to recognize that what people want most is to be with other people, giving birth to the notion of social media networks.

And that’s not the only high-tech connection to Peterborough. In 1975, one of the first magazines about personal computers was started in Peterborough. The magazine was called Byte (Bill Gates and others called it the “bible” of the computer industry), and soon after, the tiny town of Peterborough was peppered with national and international magazines. There were magazines for computer geeks and IT managers, audio enthusiasts, video makers, amateur radio, consultants, children’s history, and more.

McGraw-Hill published Byte in the “Guernsey Cattle Club” building. It is a large, 4-story brick building where, beginning around 1950, all the breeding records for Guernsey milk cows were kept—and dutifully typed on index cards by a sea of typists using manual typewriters. The building was also home to a start-up catalog retailer called Brookstone, which today you can find in nearly every mall. Now known as the “Guernsey Professional Building,” it is home to Emax Medical Billing. It’s the largest building downtown, just behind the Peterborough townhouse, located at the corner of Main and Grove streets—the intersection, according to local legend, that gave Thornton Wilder the idea to name the fictional town in Our Town, “Grover’s Corners.”

In short, Peterborough is a good place in which to live and work, and that’s why Emax Medical Billing and its employees call it our town. Still, we understand why people might wonder why a medical billing company would be based in Peterborough instead of, say, next door to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston or Dartmouth-Hitchcock in Hanover. However, in a world of colocated servers with billing and reimbursements at the speed of bits over the Internet, Emax Medical Billing could exist just about anyplace in the United States. But we like it just fine in Peterborough, which oh, by the way, just happens to be halfway between Mass General and Dartmouth-Hitchcock.