Municipalities in Massachusetts
  • Also known as:
  • City
  • Town
Ma towns.png
Massachusetts in United States.svg
CategoryMunicipality
LocationMassachusetts
Found inCounty
Created
  • 1620

Massachusetts is a state located in the Northeastern United States. Municipalities in the state are classified as either towns or cities, distinguished by their form of government under state law. Towns have an open town meeting or representative town meeting form of government; cities, on the other hand, use a mayor-council or council-manager form. Based on the form of government, there are 292 towns and 59 cities in Massachusetts. Some municipalities, however, still refer to themselves as "towns" even though they have a city form of government.

The Census Bureau classifies towns in Massachusetts as a type of "minor civil division" and cities as a type of "populated place". However, from the perspective of Massachusetts law, politics, and geography, cities and towns are the same type of municipal unit, differing only in their form of government.

There is no unincorporated land in Massachusetts; the land area of the state is completely divided up among the 351 municipalities.

Gallery


List of Municipalities

 †  County seat
 ††  State capital and county seat

Massachusetts towns by population, where darker towns are more populous, according to 2020 census data.
Massachusetts towns by population, where darker towns are more populous, according to 2020 census data.
Municipality Type[1] County[2] Form of government[1] Population
(2020)[2]
Total area
(sq mi)
Land area
(sq mi)
Year
established[3]
Notes
Abington Town Plymouth Open town meeting 17,062 9.9 9.7 1712
Acton Town Middlesex Open town meeting 24,021 20.3 20.0 1735
Acushnet Town Bristol Open town meeting 10,559 19.0 18.4 1860
Adams Town Berkshire Representative town meeting 8,166 23.0 22.9 1778
Agawam City[4] Hampden Mayor-council 28,692 24.3 23.3 1855 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Agawam
Alford Town Berkshire Open town meeting 486 11.5 11.5 1773
Amesbury City Essex Mayor-council 17,366 13.7 12.3 1668
Amherst City[4][5] Hampshire Council-manager 39,263 27.7 27.6 1775 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Amherst
Andover Town Essex Open town meeting 36,569 32.1 31.0 1646
Aquinnah Town Dukes Open town meeting 439 40.8 5.4 1870
Arlington Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 46,308 5.5 5.0 1807
Ashburnham Town Worcester Open town meeting 6,315 41.0 38.7 1765
Ashby Town Middlesex Open town meeting 3,193 24.2 23.8 1767
Ashfield Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,695 40.3 40.0 1765
Ashland Town Middlesex Open town meeting 18,832 12.9 12.4 1846
Athol Town Worcester Open town meeting 11,945 33.4 32.6 1762
Attleboro City Bristol Mayor-council 46,461 27.8 26.8 1694
Auburn Town Worcester Representative town meeting 16,889 16.4 15.4 1778
Avon Town Norfolk Open town meeting 4,777 4.6 4.4 1888
Ayer Town Middlesex Open town meeting 8,479 9.6 9.0 1871
Barnstable City[4] Barnstable Council-manager 48,916 76.5 59.3 1639 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Barnstable
Barre Town Worcester Open town meeting 5,530 44.6 44.3 1774
Becket Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,931 47.8 46.1 1765
Bedford Town Middlesex Open town meeting 14,383 13.9 13.7 1729
Belchertown Town Hampshire Open town meeting 15,350 55.4 52.7 1761
Bellingham Town Norfolk Open town meeting 16,945 19.0 18.5 1719
Belmont Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 27,295 4.7 4.7 1859
Berkley Town Bristol Open town meeting 6,764 17.4 16.5 1735
Berlin Town Worcester Open town meeting 3,158 13.1 12.9 1812
Bernardston Town Franklin Open town meeting 2,102 23.4 23.4 1762
Beverly City Essex Mayor-council 42,670 22.6 15.1 1668
Billerica Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 42,119 26.4 25.9 1655
Blackstone Town Worcester Open town meeting 9,208 11.2 10.9 1845
Blandford Town Hampden Open town meeting 1,215 53.4 51.6 1741
Bolton Town Worcester Open town meeting 5,665 20.0 19.9 1738
Boston †† City Suffolk Mayor-council 675,647 89.6 48.3 1630
Bourne Town Barnstable Open town meeting 20,452 52.9 40.7 1884
Boxborough Town Middlesex Open town meeting 5,506 10.4 10.4 1835
Boxford Town Essex Open town meeting 8,203 24.4 23.6 1685
Boylston Town Worcester Open town meeting 4,849 19.7 16.0 1785
Braintree City[4] Norfolk Mayor-council 39,143 14.6 13.8 1640 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Braintree
Brewster Town Barnstable Open town meeting 10,318 25.4 22.9 1803
Bridgewater City[4] Plymouth Council-manager 28,633 28.2 27.5 1656 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Bridgewater
Brimfield Town Hampden Open town meeting 3,694 35.2 34.7 1731
Brockton City Plymouth Mayor-council 105,643 21.5 21.3 1821
Brookfield Town Worcester Open town meeting 3,439 16.6 15.5 1718
Brookline Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 63,191 6.8 6.8 1705
Buckland Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,816 19.9 19.7 1779
Burlington Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 26,377 11.9 11.8 1799
Cambridge City Middlesex Mayor-manager-council 118,403 7.1 6.4 1636
Canton Town Norfolk Open town meeting 24,370 19.6 18.9 1797
Carlisle Town Middlesex Open town meeting 5,237 15.6 15.4 1780
Carver Town Plymouth Open town meeting 11,645 39.7 37.4 1790
Charlemont Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,185 26.4 25.9 1765
Charlton Town Worcester Open town meeting 13,315 43.8 42.5 1755[6]
Chatham Town Barnstable Open town meeting 6,594 24.4 16.3 1712
Chelmsford Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 36,392 23.2 22.7 1655
Chelsea City Suffolk Council-manager 40,787 2.5 2.2 1739
Cheshire Town Berkshire Open town meeting 3,258 27.5 26.8 1793
Chester Town Hampden Open town meeting 1,228 37.2 36.6 1765
Chesterfield Town Hampshire Open town meeting 1,186 31.2 30.8 1762
Chicopee City Hampden Mayor-council 55,560 23.9 22.9 1848
Chilmark Town Dukes Open town meeting 1,212 100.4 19 1714
Clarksburg Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,657 12.8 12.8 1798
Clinton Town Worcester Open town meeting 15,428 7.3 5.7 1850
Cohasset Town Norfolk Open town meeting 8,381 31.4 9.8 1775
Colrain Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,606 43.4 43.1 1761
Concord Town Middlesex Open town meeting 18,491 25.9 24.9 1635
Conway Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,761 37.9 37.7 1775
Cummington Town Hampshire Open town meeting 829 23.1 22.9 1779
Dalton Town Berkshire Open town meeting 6,330 21.9 21.8 1784
Danvers Town Essex Representative town meeting 28,087 14.1 13.3 1775
Dartmouth Town Bristol Representative town meeting 33,783 97.5 60.9 1664
Dedham Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 25,364 10.6 10.5 1636
Deerfield Town Franklin Open town meeting 5,090 33.4 32.4 1677
Dennis Town Barnstable Open town meeting 14,674 22.3 20.5 1793
Dighton Town Bristol Open town meeting 8,101 22.6 22.0 1712
Douglas Town Worcester Open town meeting 8,983 37.7 36.4 1775
Dover Town Norfolk Open town meeting 5,923 15.4 15.3 1836
Dracut Town Middlesex Open town meeting 32,617 21.4 20.9 1701
Dudley Town Worcester Open town meeting 11,921 22.1 21.1 1732
Dunstable Town Middlesex Open town meeting 3,358 16.7 16.6 1673
Duxbury Town Plymouth Open town meeting 16,090 37.6 23.8 1637
East Bridgewater Town Plymouth Open town meeting 14,440 17.5 17.2 1823
East Brookfield Town Worcester Open town meeting 2,224 10.4 9.8 1920
East Longmeadow City Hampden Manager-Council 16,430 13.0 13.0 1894
Eastham Town Barnstable Open town meeting 5,752 25.7 14.0 1646
Easthampton City Hampshire Mayor-council 16,211 13.6 13.3 1809
Easton Town Bristol Open town meeting 25,058 29.2 28.4 1725
Edgartown Town Dukes Open town meeting 5,168 122.7 27 1671
Egremont Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,372 18.9 18.7 1775
Erving Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,665 14.4 13.9 1838
Essex Town Essex Open town meeting 3,675 15.9 14 1819
Everett City Middlesex Mayor-council 49,075 3.7 3.4 1870
Fairhaven Town Bristol Representative town meeting 15,924 14.1 12.4 1812
Fall River City Bristol Mayor-council 94,000 40.2 33.1 1803
Falmouth Town Barnstable Representative town meeting 32,517 54.4 44.1 1686
Fitchburg City Worcester Mayor-council 41,946 28.1 27.8 1764
Florida Town Berkshire Open town meeting 694 24.6 24.4 1805
Foxborough Town Norfolk Open town meeting 18,618 20.9 20.1 1778
Framingham City Middlesex Mayor-council 72,362 26.5 25.0 1700
Franklin City[4] Norfolk Council-administrator 33,261 27.0 26.6 1778 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Franklin
Freetown Town Bristol Open town meeting 9,206 38.3 36.6 1683
Gardner City Worcester Mayor-council 21,287 23.0 22.1 1785
Georgetown Town Essex Open town meeting 8,470 13.2 12.9 1838
Gill Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,551 14.8 13.7 1793
Gloucester City Essex Mayor-council 29,729 41.5 26.2 1623
Goshen Town Hampshire Open town meeting 970 17.7 17.4 1781
Gosnold Town Dukes Open town meeting 70 140.2 13.2 1864
Grafton Town Worcester Open town meeting 19,664 23.3 22.7 1735
Granby Town Hampshire Open town meeting 6,110 28.1 27.8 1768
Granville Town Hampden Open town meeting 1,538 43.0 42.2 1775
Great Barrington Town Berkshire Open town meeting 7,172 45.8 44.8 1761
Greenfield City[4] Franklin Mayor-council 17,768 21.9 21.4 1775
Groton Town Middlesex Open town meeting 11,315 33.7 32.8 1655
Groveland Town Essex Open town meeting 6,752 9.4 9.0 1850
Hadley Town Hampshire Open town meeting 5,325 24.6 23.1 1661
Halifax Town Plymouth Open town meeting 7,749 17.3 16.2 1734
Hamilton Town Essex Open town meeting 7,561 14.9 14.2 1793
Hampden Town Hampden Open town meeting 4,966 19.7 19.6 1878
Hancock Town Berkshire Open town meeting 757 35.8 35.7 1776
Hanover Town Plymouth Open town meeting 14,833 15.7 15.6 1727
Hanson Town Plymouth Open town meeting 10,639 15.7 15.0 1820
Hardwick Town Worcester Open town meeting 2,667 40.8 38.6 1739
Harvard Town Worcester Open town meeting 6,851 27.0 26.4 1732
Harwich Town Barnstable Open town meeting 13,440 33.1 20.9 1694
Hatfield Town Hampshire Open town meeting 3,352 16.8 15.9 1670
Haverhill City Essex Mayor-council 67,787 35.7 33.0 1641
Hawley Town Franklin Open town meeting 353 30.9 30.9 1792
Heath Town Franklin Open town meeting 723 24.9 24.9 1785
Hingham Town Plymouth Open town meeting 24,284 26.3 22.2 1635
Hinsdale Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,919 21.7 20.7 1804
Holbrook Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 11,405 7.4 7.4 1872
Holden Town Worcester Open town meeting 19,905 36.2 35.0 1741
Holland Town Hampden Open town meeting 2,603 13.1 12.3 1835
Holliston Town Middlesex Open town meeting 14,996 19.0 18.7 1724
Holyoke City Hampden Mayor-council 38,238 22.8 21.2 1850
Hopedale Town Worcester Open town meeting 6,017 5.3 5.2 1886
Hopkinton Town Middlesex Open town meeting 18,758 28.2 26.6 1715
Hubbardston Town Worcester Open town meeting 4,328 42.0 41.0 1775
Hudson Town Middlesex Open town meeting 20,092 11.8 11.5 1866
Hull Town Plymouth Open town meeting 10,072 26.9 2.8 1644
Huntington Town Hampshire Open town meeting 2,094 26.8 26.3 1775
Ipswich Town Essex Open town meeting 13,785 42.5 32.1 1634
Kingston Town Plymouth Open town meeting 13,708 20.5 18.6 1726
Lakeville Town Plymouth Open town meeting 11,523 36.1 29.6 1853
Lancaster Town Worcester Open town meeting 8,441 28.2 27.7 1653
Lanesborough Town Berkshire Open town meeting 3,038 29.6 28.8 1765
Lawrence City Essex Mayor-council 89,143 7.4 6.9 1847
Lee Town Berkshire Open town meeting 5,788 27.0 26.1 1777
Leicester Town Worcester Open town meeting 11,087 24.7 23.4 1714
Lenox Town Berkshire Open town meeting 5,095 21.7 21.2 1775
Leominster City Worcester Mayor-council 43,782 29.7 28.9 1740
Leverett Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,865 23.0 22.9 1774
Lexington Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 34,454 16.5 16.4 1713
Leyden Town Franklin Open town meeting 734 18.0 17.9 1809
Lincoln Town Middlesex Open town meeting 7,014 15.0 14.4 1754
Littleton Town Middlesex Open town meeting 10,141 17.6 16.6 1715
Longmeadow Town Hampden Open town meeting 15,853 9.7 9.1 1783
Lowell City Middlesex Mayor-manager-council 115,554 14.5 13.6 1826
Ludlow Town Hampden Representative town meeting 21,002 28.2 27.2 1775
Lunenburg Town Worcester Open town meeting 11,782 27.7 26.4 1728
Lynn City Essex Mayor-council 101,253 13.5 10.7 1629
Lynnfield Town Essex Open town meeting 13,000 10.5 9.9 1814
Malden City Middlesex Mayor-council 66,263 5.1 5.0 1649
Manchester-by-the-Sea Town Essex Open town meeting 5,395 18.3 9.2 1645
Mansfield Town Bristol Open town meeting 23,860 20.7 20.5 1775
Marblehead Town Essex Open town meeting 20,441 19.6 4.4 1629
Marion Town Plymouth Open town meeting 5,347 26.1 12.1 1852
Marlborough City Middlesex Mayor-council 41,793 22.1 20.9 1660
Marshfield Town Plymouth Open town meeting 25,825 31.7 28.5 1640
Mashpee Town Barnstable Open town meeting 15,060 27.2 23.4 1870
Mattapoisett Town Plymouth Open town meeting 6,508 24.2 17.4 1857
Maynard Town Middlesex Open town meeting 10,746 5.4 5.2 1871
Medfield Town Norfolk Open town meeting 12,799 14.6 14.5 1651
Medford City Middlesex Mayor-council 59,659 8.7 8.1 1630
Medway Town Norfolk Open town meeting 13,115 11.5 11.5 1713
Melrose City Middlesex Mayor-council 29,817 4.8 4.7 1850
Mendon Town Worcester Open town meeting 6,228 18.3 18.1 1667
Merrimac Town Essex Open town meeting 6,723 8.8 8.5 1876
Methuen City[4] Essex Mayor-council 53,039 23.0 22.2 1725
Middleborough Town Plymouth Open town meeting 24,245 72.2 69.1 1669
Middlefield Town Hampshire Open town meeting 385 24.2 24.2 1783
Middleton Town Essex Open town meeting 9,779 14.5 14.0 1728
Milford Town Worcester Representative town meeting 30,379 14.9 14.6 1780
Millbury Town Worcester Open town meeting 13,831 16.3 15.7 1813
Millis Town Norfolk Open town meeting 8,460 12.3 12.2 1885
Millville Town Worcester Open town meeting 3,174 5.0 4.9 1916
Milton Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 28,630 13.3 13.0 1662
Monroe Town Franklin Open town meeting 118 10.8 10.7 1822
Monson Town Hampden Open town meeting 8,150 44.8 44.1 1775
Montague Town Franklin Representative town meeting 8,580 31.5 30.2 1775
Monterey Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,095 27.4 26.4 1847
Montgomery Town Hampden Open town meeting 819 15.2 15.1 1780
Mount Washington Town Berkshire Open town meeting 160 22.4 22.2 1779
Nahant Town Essex Open town meeting 3,334 15.5 1.0 1853
Nantucket Town Nantucket Open town meeting 14,255 105.3 47.8 1671
Natick Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 37,006 16.1 15.1 1781
Needham Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 32,091 12.7 12.6 1711
New Ashford Town Berkshire Open town meeting 250 13.5 13.4 1835
New Bedford City Bristol Mayor-council 101,079 24.1 20.0 1787
New Braintree Town Worcester Open town meeting 996 20.9 20.7 1775
New Marlborough Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,528 47.9 46.9 1775
New Salem Town Franklin Open town meeting 983 58.6 44.8 1775
Newbury Town Essex Open town meeting 6,716 26.3 23.4 1635
Newburyport City Essex Mayor-council 18,289 10.7 8.3 1764
Newton City Middlesex Mayor-council[7] 88,923 18.2 17.8 1688
Norfolk Town Norfolk Open town meeting 11,662 15.2 14.8 1870
North Adams City Berkshire Mayor-council 12,961 20.6 20.4 1878
North Andover Town Essex Open town meeting 30,915 27.8 26.3 1855
North Attleborough City Bristol Manager-council 30,834 19.1 18.6 1887
North Brookfield Town Worcester Open town meeting 4,735 21.7 21.1 1812
North Reading Town Middlesex Open town meeting 15,554 13.5 13.3 1853
Northampton City Hampshire Mayor-council 29,571 35.8 34.2 1656
Northborough Town Worcester Open town meeting 15,741 18.8 18.5 1775
Northbridge Town Worcester Open town meeting 16,335 18.1 17.2 1775
Northfield Town Franklin Open town meeting 2,866 35.4 34.3 1723
Norton Town Bristol Open town meeting 19,202 29.8 28.7 1711
Norwell Town Plymouth Open town meeting 11,351 21.2 20.9 1849
Norwood Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 31,611 10.6 10.5 1872
Oak Bluffs Town Dukes Open town meeting 5,341 26.0 7.4 1880
Oakham Town Worcester Open town meeting 1,851 21.5 21.1 1775
Orange Town Franklin Open town meeting 7,569 36.0 35.1 1810
Orleans Town Barnstable Open town meeting 6,307 22.7 14.1 1797
Otis Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,634 38.0 35.6 1773
Oxford Town Worcester Open town meeting 13,347 27.5 26.6 1713
Palmer City[4] Hampden Council-manager 12,448 32.0 31.6 1775 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Palmer. Smallest city in Massachusetts by population.
Paxton Town Worcester Open town meeting 5,004 15.5 14.7 1775
Peabody City Essex Mayor-council 54,481 16.8 16.2 1868
Pelham Town Hampshire Open town meeting 1,280 26.5 25.1 1743
Pembroke Town Plymouth Open town meeting 18,361 23.5 21.8 1712
Pepperell Town Middlesex Open town meeting 11,604 23.2 22.6 1775
Peru Town Berkshire Open town meeting 814 26.0 25.9 1771
Petersham Town Worcester Open town meeting 1,194 68.3 54.2 1754
Phillipston Town Worcester Open town meeting 1,726 24.6 24.3 1786
Pittsfield City Berkshire Mayor-council 43,927 42.5 40.5 1761
Plainfield Town Hampshire Open town meeting 633 21.3 21.1 1807
Plainville Town Norfolk Open town meeting 9,945 11.5 11.0 1905
Plymouth Town Plymouth Representative town meeting 61,217 134.0 96.5 1620
Plympton Town Plymouth Open town meeting 2,930 15.1 14.8 1707
Princeton Town Worcester Open town meeting 3,495 35.8 35.4 1771
Provincetown Town Barnstable Open town meeting 3,664 17.5 9.7 1727
Quincy City Norfolk Mayor-council 101,636 26.9 16.6 1792
Randolph City[4] Norfolk Council-manager 34,984 10.5 10.1 1793 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Randolph
Raynham Town Bristol Open town meeting 15,142 20.9 20.5 1731
Reading Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 25,518 9.9 9.9 1644
Rehoboth Town Bristol Open town meeting 12,502 46.8 46.5 1645
Revere City Suffolk Mayor-council 62,186 10.1 5.7 1846
Richmond Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,407 19.0 18.7 1765
Rochester Town Plymouth Open town meeting 5,717 36.4 33.9 1686
Rockland Town Plymouth Open town meeting 17,803 10.1 10.0 1874
Rockport Town Essex Open town meeting 6,992 17.5 7.0 1840
Rowe Town Franklin Open town meeting 424 24.0 23.4 1785
Rowley Town Essex Open town meeting 6,161 20.3 18.2 1639
Royalston Town Worcester Open town meeting 1,250 42.5 41.9 1765
Russell Town Hampden Open town meeting 1,643 17.8 17.3 1792
Rutland Town Worcester Open town meeting 9,049 36.4 35.3 1713
Salem City Essex Mayor-council 44,480 18.3 8.3 1626
Salisbury Town Essex Open town meeting 9,236 17.9 15.4 1639
Sandisfield Town Berkshire Open town meeting 989 53.0 51.8 1762
Sandwich Town Barnstable Open town meeting 20,259 44.2 42.7 1638
Saugus Town Essex Representative town meeting 28,619 11.8 10.8 1815
Savoy Town Berkshire Open town meeting 645 36.0 35.8 1797
Scituate Town Plymouth Open town meeting 19,063 31.8 17.6 1636
Seekonk Town Bristol Open town meeting 15,531 18.3 18.2 1812
Sharon Town Norfolk Open town meeting 18,575 24.2 23.3 1775
Sheffield Town Berkshire Open town meeting 3,327 48.6 47.5 1733
Shelburne Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,884 23.4 23.2 1775
Sherborn Town Middlesex Open town meeting 4,401 16.2 16.0 1674
Shirley Town Middlesex Open town meeting 7,431 15.9 15.8 1775
Shrewsbury Town Worcester Representative town meeting 38,325 21.7 20.7 1727
Shutesbury Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,717 27.2 26.6 1761
Somerset Town Bristol Open town meeting 18,303 12.0 8.1 1790
Somerville City Middlesex Mayor-council 81,045 4.2 4.1 1842
South Hadley Town Hampshire Representative town meeting 18,150 18.4 17.7 1775
Southampton Town Hampshire Open town meeting 6,224 29.1 28.2 1775
Southborough Town Worcester Open town meeting 10,450 15.7 14.2 1727
Southbridge City[4] Worcester Council-manager 17,740 20.9 20.2 1816 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Southbridge
Southwick Town Hampden Open town meeting 9,232 31.7 30.8 1775
Spencer Town Worcester Open town meeting 11,992 34.1 32.9 1775
Springfield City Hampden Mayor-council 155,929 33.1 31.9 1636
Sterling Town Worcester Open town meeting 7,985 31.6 30.5 1781
Stockbridge Town Berkshire Open town meeting 2,018 23.7 22.7 1739
Stoneham Town Middlesex Open town meeting 23,244 6.7 6.2 1725
Stoughton Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 29,281 16.3 16.0 1726
Stow Town Middlesex Open town meeting 7,174 18.1 17.6 1683
Sturbridge Town Worcester Open town meeting 9,867 39.0 37.4 1738
Sudbury Town Middlesex Open town meeting 18,934 24.6 24.4 1639
Sunderland Town Franklin Open town meeting 3,663 14.7 14.2 1714
Sutton Town Worcester Open town meeting 9,357 33.9 32.4 1714
Swampscott Town Essex Representative town meeting 15,111 6.7 3.1 1852
Swansea Town Bristol Open town meeting 17,144 25.5 23.1 1667
Taunton City Bristol Mayor-council 59,408 48.4 46.7 1639
Templeton Town Worcester Open town meeting 8,149 32.4 32.0 1762
Tewksbury Town Middlesex Open town meeting 31,342 21.1 20.7 1734
Tisbury Town Dukes Open town meeting 4,815 19.1 6.5 1671
Tolland Town Hampden Open town meeting 471 32.8 31.5 1810
Topsfield Town Essex Open town meeting 6,569 12.8 11.9 1650
Townsend Town Middlesex Open town meeting 9,127 33.1 32.9 1732
Truro Town Barnstable Open town meeting 2,454 26.3 21.1 1709
Tyngsborough Town Middlesex Open town meeting 12,380 18.1 16.9 1809
Tyringham Town Berkshire Open town meeting 427 18.9 18.6 1762
Upton Town Worcester Open town meeting 8,000 21.7 21.5 1735
Uxbridge Town Worcester Open town meeting 14,162 30.4 29.5 1727
Wakefield Town Middlesex Open town meeting 27,090 7.9 7.5 1812
Wales Town Hampden Open town meeting 1,832 15.9 15.7 1762
Walpole Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 26,383 21.0 20.5 1724
Waltham City Middlesex Mayor-council 65,218 13.8 12.7 1738
Ware Town Hampshire Open town meeting 10,066 40.0 34.4 1775
Wareham Town Plymouth Open town meeting 23,303 46.3 35.8 1739
Warren Town Worcester Open town meeting 4,975 27.6 27.5 1742
Warwick Town Franklin Open town meeting 780 37.6 37.3 1763
Washington Town Berkshire Open town meeting 494 38.8 38 1777
Watertown City[4] Middlesex Council-manager 35,329 4.1 4.0 1630
Wayland Town Middlesex Open town meeting 13,943 15.9 15.2 1780
Webster Town Worcester Open town meeting 17,776 14.5 12.5 1832
Wellesley Town Norfolk Representative town meeting 29,550 10.5 10.2 1881
Wellfleet Town Barnstable Open town meeting 3,566 35.4 19.8 1775
Wendell Town Franklin Open town meeting 924 32.2 31.9 1781
Wenham Town Essex Open town meeting 4,979 8.1 7.6 1643
West Boylston Town Worcester Open town meeting 7,877 13.8 12.9 1808
West Bridgewater Town Plymouth Open town meeting 7,707 15.7 15.3 1822
West Brookfield Town Worcester Open town meeting 3,833 21.1 20.5 1848
West Newbury Town Essex Open town meeting 4,500 14.7 13.4 1819
West Springfield City[4] Hampden Mayor-council 28,835 17.5 16.7 1774 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of West Springfield
West Stockbridge Town Berkshire Open town meeting 1,343 18.7 18.5 1775
West Tisbury Town Dukes Open town meeting 3,555 41.8 25.0 1892
Westborough Town Worcester Open town meeting 21,567 21.6 20.5 1717
Westfield City Hampden Mayor-council 40,834 47.3 46.3 1669
Westford Town Middlesex Open town meeting 24,643 31.3 30.6 1729
Westhampton Town Hampshire Open town meeting 1,622 27.4 27.2 1778
Westminster Town Worcester Open town meeting 8,213 37.3 35.3 1770
Weston Town Middlesex Open town meeting 11,851 17.3 17.0 1713
Westport Town Bristol Open town meeting 16,339 64.4 50.1 1787
Westwood Town Norfolk Open town meeting 16,266 11.1 11.0 1897
Weymouth City[4] Norfolk Mayor-council 57,437 21.6 16.8 1635 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Weymouth
Whately Town Franklin Open town meeting 1,607 20.7 20.2 1771
Whitman Town Plymouth Open town meeting 15,121 7.1 7.0 1875
Wilbraham Town Hampden Open town meeting 14,613 22.4 22.2 1763
Williamsburg Town Hampshire Open town meeting 2,504 25.7 25.6 1775
Williamstown Town Berkshire Open town meeting 7,513 46.9 46.8 1765
Wilmington Town Middlesex Open town meeting 23,349 17.2 17.1 1730
Winchendon Town Worcester Open town meeting 10,364 44.1 43.3 1764
Winchester Town Middlesex Representative town meeting 22,970 6.3 6.0 1850
Windsor Town Berkshire Open town meeting 831 35.2 35.0 1771
Winthrop City[4] Suffolk Council-manager 19,316 8.3 2.0 1852 Although it is a city, the official name is Town of Winthrop
Woburn City Middlesex Mayor-aldermen 40,876 12.9 12.7 1642
Worcester City Worcester Mayor-manager-council 206,518 38.5 37.4 1684
Worthington Town Hampshire Open town meeting 1,193 32.1 31.9 1768
Wrentham Town Norfolk Open town meeting 12,178 22.9 22.2 1673
Yarmouth Town Barnstable Open town meeting 25,023 28.2 24.1 1639

Geography of towns at formation

Formation of Massachusetts cities and towns, 1620–1870
Formation of Massachusetts cities and towns, 1620–1870

This map shows towns colored by the date they were incorporated in Massachusetts since the founding of Plimoth Plantation in 1620. Many of the towns and future cities shown covering the area of their original incorporation have since been divided into two, three or in some cases several smaller municipalities. For example, Dorchester was incorporated in 1630 and originally included all of the current Dorchester, now the largest neighborhood of Boston, plus the Boston neighborhood of Mattapan, and all of present-day Quincy, Milton, Braintree, Randolph, Holbrook, Canton, Sharon, Stoughton, Avon and the northeast portion of Foxboro. Nearly all of Massachusetts territory had been incorporated by 1815, with the final three areas of Erving (1838), Gay Head (now Aquinnah) and Mashpee (both 1870) being incorporated from previously Native American land.

Community Year incorporated as a town[8] Notes
Medfield 1651 The first town to leave Dedham.
Natick 1659 Established as a community for Christian Indians.
Wrentham 1673 Southeast corner of town was part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637.
Deerfield 1673 Land was granted to Dedham in return for giving up Natick.[9]
Needham 1711
Medway 1713 Separated from Medfield. The land was granted to Dedham in 1649.[10]
Bellingham 1719
Walpole 1724
Stoughton 1726 Part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637. Separated from Dorchester.
Sharon 1775 Part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637. Separated from Stoughton.
Foxborough 1778 Part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637.
Franklin 1778 Separated from Wrentham.
Canton 1797 Part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637. Separated from Stoughton.
Dover 1836 Then known as Springfield, it became a precinct of Dedham by vote of Town Meeting in 1729;[11] relegated to a parish the same year by the General Court.[12] Created the Fourth Precinct by the General Court in 1748.[13]
Hyde Park 1868 800 acres taken from Dedham, along with land from Dorchester and Milton.[14]
Norfolk 1870 Separated from Wrentham.
Norwood 1872 Created a precinct with Clapboard Trees (Westwood) in 1729.[12] Became its own precinct in 1734.[12]
Wellesley 1881 Separated from Needham
Millis 1885 Separated from Medfield.
Avon 1888 Part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637. Separated from Stoughton.
Westwood 1897 Joined with South Dedham (Norwood) to create Second Precinct in 1729.[12] Returned to First Precinct in 1734.[12] In 1737 became Third Precinct.[12][15] Last community to break away directly from Dedham.
Plainville 1905 Eastern section of town was part of the Dorchester New Grant of 1637. Separated from Wrentham.

Former municipalities

Some towns and cities were annexed to others; disincorporated; or ceded to another state in their entirety. This list does not include territory changes affecting only part of a municipality; see History of Massachusetts.

Annexations

The following formerly independent municipalities have been annexed to Boston:

The town of Bradford was annexed to Haverhill, Massachusetts in 1897.

Disincorporations

The following towns were disincorporated in 1938 due to the construction of the Quabbin Reservoir; all their territory was absorbed into surrounding towns:

Cessions

The following towns were ceded to the Rhode Island colony in 1747 as part of a border dispute:

Due to a 1642 surveying error and long-running political disputes, the following Massachusetts towns joined the Connecticut Colony in late 1749:

Due to general lack of colonial government there, all four towns in colonial New Hampshire chose to become part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1641. They were ceded to the re-formed Province of New Hampshire in 1680, under a newly issued royal charter.

Numerous towns were ceded to New Hampshire after the Northern boundary of Massachusetts was defined by royal decree in 1741.

Those towns were later disincorporated and reincorporated under New Hampshire laws on the same day in 1746.

All settlements in the District of Maine were ceded when the state of Maine gained its independence from Massachusetts in 1820 as part of the Missouri Compromise.

Archaic names

Many municipalities have changed names.[16]

Old name Modern name County Notes
Acushena Dartmouth Bristol
Agawam Dartmouth Bristol Different from Agawam in Hampden County
Agawam Plantation Springfield Hampden An Agawam separated from Springfield via West Springfield
Andrewstown Chesterfield Hampshire
Apponegansett Dartmouth Bristol
Ashuelot Equivalent Dalton Berkshire
Attleborough Attleboro Bristol The -ugh was dropped when the city was re-incorporated in 1914
Barnardstone's Grant Florida Berkshire
Basse River Beverly Essex
Belcher's Town Belchertown Hampshire
Berkshire Equivalent Florida Berkshire
Billirikey Billerica Middlesex
Blue Hill Lands Braintree Norfolk
Boggestow Sherborn Middlesex
Boston Township Number One Charlemont Franklin
Boston Township Number Two Colrain Franklin
Bullock's Grant Florida Berkshire
Bullocks Grant Clarksburg Berkshire
Cabotville Chicopee Hampden
Cambridge Farms Lexington Middlesex
Cambridge South Parish Brighton Suffolk
Cape Ann Gloucester Essex Different from the modern definition of Cape Ann, which includes Gloucester, Essex, Manchester-by-the-Sea, and Rockport
Chabakongomum Dudley Worcester
Chabanagungamug Dudley Worcester
Chappequiddick Edgartown Dukes
Charley Mount Charlemont Franklin
Charlton Charlestown Suffolk
Chebacco Essex Essex
Chequocket Barnstable Barnstable
Chuckomug Barnstable Barnstable
Coa Barnstable Barnstable
Cochickawick Andover Essex
Cochituit Andover Essex
Cokachoise Barnstable Barnstable
Cold Spring Belchertown Hampshire
Colechester Salisbury Essex
Conahasset Cohasset Norfolk
Concord Village Acton Middlesex
Contentment Dedham Norfolk
Cotachesett Barnstable Barnstable
Cottage City Oak Bluffs Dukes
Danforth's Farms Framingham Middlesex
District of Carlisle Carlisle Middlesex
Dorchester Village Canton Norfolk
Dorchester-Canada Plantation Ashburnham Worcester
Ducksburrow Duxbury Plymouth
Duxburrow Plantation Bridgewater Plymouth
East Chelmsford Lowell Middlesex
East Hoosuck Plantation Adams Berkshire
East Sudbury Wayland Middlesex
Edgar Towne Edgartown Dukes
Emesbury Amesbury Essex
Erving's Grant Enfield Hampshire
Fair Haven Village Fairhaven Bristol
Falls Fight Bernardston Franklin
Falltown Plantation Bernardston Franklin
Five Pound Island Gloucester Essex
Foords Farm Bridgewater Plymouth
Fort Massachusetts Adams Berkshire
Freeman's Purchase Fall River Bristol
Freemens Land Freetown Bristol
Gageborough Windsor Berkshire
Gay Head Aquinnah Dukes
Gay Head Indian District Aquinnah Dukes
Gerry Phillipston Worcester
Glasgow Blandford Hampden
Gloscester Gloucester Essex
Great Harbour Edgartown Dukes
Green Harbor Duxbury Plymouth
Greenwich Enfield Hampshire
Hack's Grant Enfield Hampshire
Hawthorn Danvers Essex
Hadley Third Precinct Amherst Hampshire
Hockamock Easton Bristol
Hockomock Bridgewater Plymouth
Housatonic Township Number Four Becket Berkshire
Huntstown Plantation Ashfield Franklin
Hutchinson Barre Worcester
Ipswich Eighth Parish Essex Essex
Ireland Holyoke Hampden
Iron Work Farm Acton Middlesex
Ketiticut Bridgewater Plymouth
Kokachoise Barnstable Barnstable
Litchfield Dunstable Middlesex
Little Cambridge Brighton Suffolk
Little Salisbury Amesbury Essex
Lyttleton Littleton Middlesex
Manamoiet Chatham Barnstable
Manamoit Village Chatham Barnstable
Manamooskeagin Abington Plymouth
Manchaug Sutton Worcester
Manor of Tisbury Chilmark Dukes
Mattakeeset Barnstable Barnstable
Mattakeeset Duxbury Plymouth
Mattapan Dorchester Suffolk Section of Boston
Mennems Moone Dorchester Suffolk
Menotomy Arlington Middlesex
Merry Mount Merrymount Norfolk Neighborhood of Quincy
Middlesex Gore Dudley Worcester
Mile & Half of Land Attleboro Bristol
Minnechaug Hampden Hampden
Minot's Grant Cummington Hampshire
Mishawum Charlestown Suffolk
Mistic Barnstable Barnstable
Mohootset Carver Plymouth
Monatiquot Braintree Norfolk
Monomoy Chatham Barnstable
Monument Village Bourne Barnstable
Moskeehtucketqut Barnstable Barnstable
Mount Dagan Braintree Norfolk
Mount Wollaston Merrymount Norfolk Neighborhood of Quincy
Muddy River Brookline Norfolk
Murrayfield Chester Hampden
Murrayfield Grant Cummington Hampshire
Musketequid Concord Middlesex
Namassakeesett Duxbury Plymouth
Nashowakemmuck Chilmark Dukes
Nawsett Eastham Barnstable
New Glasgow Blandford Hampden
New Grant Acton Middlesex
New Hingham Plantation Chesterfield Hampshire
New Providence Cheshire Berkshire
New Providence Hill Cheshire Berkshire
New Providence Plantation Adams Berkshire
New Providence Purchase Cheshire Berkshire
New Rowley Georgetown Essex
New Sherburn Douglas Worcester
Newe Towne Cambridge Middlesex Included modern Newton
Newtown Cambridge Middlesex Included modern Newton
No Town Plantation Buckland Franklin
Nobscusset Dennis Barnstable
Noman's Land Chilmark Dukes
Noddle's Island Boston Suffolk
North Bridgewater Brockton Plymouth
North Purchase Attleboro Bristol
North Sandwich Bourne Barnstable
North Wrentham Norfolk Norfolk
Nossett Eastham Barnstable
Noticock Dunstable Middlesex
Nottingham Dunstable Middlesex
Number Thirteen Chelsea Suffolk
Nunketest Bridgewater Plymouth
Nunnepog Edgartown Dukes
Passacomuck Easthampton Hampshire
Pawtucket Chelmsford Middlesex
Pawtucket Dracut Middlesex
Payquage Plantation Athol Worcester
Peymechit Barnstable Barnstable
Plantation Chickleystown Charlemont Franklin
Plantation Number Five (1762 Township) Cummington Hampshire
Plantation Number Four Becket Berkshire
Plantation Number Nine (1762 Township) Chester Hampden
Plantation Number One (Western Township of 1762) Chesterfield Hampshire
Plantation Number One Adams Berkshire
Pocomtuck Deerfield Franklin
Podunke Alford Berkshire
Podunkville Alford Berkshire
Poguaige Athol Worcester
Pompositicut Stow Middlesex
Provincetown on Mills River Athol Worcester
Pullen Poynte Chelsea Suffolk
Pullin Point Chelsea Suffolk
Punkapoag Canton Norfolk
Quabaug Territory Brookfield Worcester
Quabaug Territory East Brookfield Worcester
Quaboag Brookfield Worcester
Quequechan Region Fall River Bristol
Quichickichick Andover Essex
Quinsigamond Worcester Worcester
Quobauge Brookfield Worcester
Rowley Village Boxford Essex
Rumney Marsh Chelsea Suffolk
Rutland District Barre Worcester
Sacconeesett Falmouth Barnstable
Salem Farms Danvers Essex
Salem Middle Parish Danvers Essex
Salem Village Parish Danvers Essex
Salisbury-new-toune Amesbury Essex
Santuite Barnstable Barnstable
Satucket Brewster Barnstable
Satuite Barnstable Barnstable
Sawkatucket Brewster Barnstable
Scipuiszet Falmouth Barnstable
Sconticut Fairhaven Bristol
Seipuiszet Falmouth Barnstable
Sepoese Barnstable Barnstable
Sepuit Barnstable Barnstable
Sesuet Dennis Barnstable
Shawanon Egremont Berkshire
Shawanon Purchase Alford Berkshire
Shawmut Boston Suffolk
Shawshinnock Billerica Middlesex
Shawsin Billerica Middlesex
Sipnesset Barnstable Barnstable
Skonkonet Barnstable Barnstable
Skunkamug Barnstable Barnstable
Slacksville Plainville Norfolk
South Malden Everett Middlesex
South Parish Enfield Hampshire
South Purchase Dighton Bristol
South Reading Wakefield Middlesex
South Redding Wakefield Middlesex
South Wilbraham Hampden Hampden
Springfield Parish Dover Norfolk
Squantums Neck Quincy Norfolk Annexed to Dorchester 1641, annexed to Quincy 1792[17]
Suckanesset Falmouth Barnstable
Sudbury Wayland Middlesex
Suffield Equivalent Lands Blandford Hampden
Tamahappaseeacon Barnstable Barnstable
Taunton Dighton Bristol Different from modern Taunton
Taunton North Purchase Easton Bristol
Tiverton Freetown Bristol Different from modern Tiverton, Rhode Island
Tragabigzanda Gloucester Essex
Tremont Boston Suffolk
Trimountaine Boston Suffolk
Troy Fall River Bristol
Turkey Hill Fitchburg Worcester
Unquityquesset Milton Norfolk
Vinson's Cove Gloucester Essex
Wameset Chelmsford Middlesex
Waqua Edgartown Dukes
Ward Auburn Worcester
Washqua Edgartown Dukes
Waskotussoo Barnstable Barnstable
Watatick Hill Ashburnham Worcester
Wattuppa Freetown Bristol
Weguasset Chatham Barnstable
Wellington Dighton Bristol
Wequaquet Barnstable Barnstable
Wessagusset Colony Weymouth Norfolk Founded by Thomas Weston in 1622, 2nd oldest European settlement in Massachusetts. Incorporated as Weymouth in 1635 by settlers from the Dorset, England town of the same name.
West Cambridge Arlington Middlesex
West Hoosuck Williamstown Berkshire
West Sandwich Bourne Barnstable
Weymouth Canada Ashfield Franklin
Willard's Farm Acton Middlesex
Winnissimet Chelsea Suffolk
Wood End Reading Middlesex
Wyngaersheek Gloucester Essex
Yanno's Land Barnstable Barnstable
York Egremont Berkshire

See also

Notes

References

  1. ^ a b "2009-10 Municipal Directory". Massachusetts Municipal Association. Archived from the original on 2013-06-15. Retrieved 2010-01-25.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Housing Occupancy Status: 2010 - State -- County Subdivision, 2010 Census Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-03-23.[dead link]
  3. ^ "Massachusetts City and Town Incorporation and Settlement Dates". Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved 2009-05-06.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o One of 14 municipalities with a city form of government that refers to itself as "The Town of". "Citizen Information Service: Massachusetts City and Town Incorporation and Settlement Dates". Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved 2016-08-11.
  5. ^ http://www.sec.state.ma.us/cis/cisctlist/ctlistalph.htm
  6. ^ William O. Hultgren (Fall 2004). "Time Line for the Establishment of the Town of Charlton" (PDF). Charlton Historical Society Newsletter. Charlton Historical Society. p. 1. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-19. Retrieved 2010-04-22.
  7. ^ "Newton, MA - News Details". www.newtonma.gov. Retrieved 2016-06-10.
  8. ^ "Massachusetts City and Town Incorporation and Settlement Dates". William Francis Galvin, Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved July 13, 2019.
  9. ^ Hanson, Robert Brand (1976). Dedham, Massachusetts, 1635-1890. Dedham Historical Society. pp. 74–76.
  10. ^ Hanson 1976, p. 68.
  11. ^ Lockridge 1985, p. 114.
  12. ^ a b c d e f Lockridge 1985, p. 115.
  13. ^ *Lockridge, Kenneth (1985). A New England Town. New York: W.W. Norton & Company. p. 115. ISBN 978-0-393-95459-3.
  14. ^ Knight, D.D.S., Jos. King; Davis, Esq., Edmund; Humphrey, Henry B. "Memorial Sketch of Hyde Park, Mass., for the first twenty years of its corporate existence (1868 – 1888)". Hyde Park Historical Society. Retrieved April 23, 2021.
  15. ^ Lockridge 1985, p. 99.
  16. ^ Archaic Community, District, Neighborhood, Section and Village, Names in Massachusetts. Massachusetts Secretary of State Citizen Information Service. Retrieved 2008 Apr 13.
  17. ^ "DIOTD, Mar. 10, 2009 Dorchester Territory". Dorchester Atheneum. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved 2009-08-11.