Massachusetts History - the history of Massachusetts
   
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Vacation 2 USA   >   Massachusetts   >   History
Vacation 2 USA   >   History   >   Massachusetts History

   
 

Massachusetts History


Before the arrival of Europeans, the area that is today the state of Massachusetts was inhabited by various Algonquian-speaking Native American peoples including the Massachusett, the Pennacook, the Wampanoag, the Nauset, the Nipmuc, the Pocomtuc, the Mahican, the Narragansett and Mohegan. Sadly however, all these peoples were soon decimated by smallpox when Europeans first arrived in North America.

In 1620, the Pilgrims arrived from England on the Mayflower, establishing a colony at Plymouth. Like the Native Americans, the Pilgrims suffered from smallpox. They were however helped by the Wampanoags, and celebrated their first Thanksgiving with the Native Americans in 1621. The English settlers were known to the Native Americans, as Yengeeze (their pronunciation of "English"). This is the origin of the word "Yankee".

In the following decades, the Pilgrims were followed by Puritans, who established a colony at Boston, as well as Anglicans and Quakers. However there were religious tensions, with Quakerism banned, and four Quakers hanged on Boston Colony. The English colonies of Connecticut and Rhode Island were founded at this time by dissenters fleeing the lack of religious tolerance in the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

In the reign of King James II of England, who was an outspoken Catholic, the Massachusetts Bay Colony's charter was annulled. A short-lived Dominion of New England was formed, but the Royal Governor was overthrown by the colonials. After James' overthrow, the Plymouth Colony and Massachusetts Bay Colony (Boston) were merged, and a new royal charter was granted in 1692.

1692 was also signalled the Salem witch trials. The trials lasted until May 1693, and resulted in the deaths of 20 people (14 women and 6 men), and the imprisonment of more than 150.

Massachusetts was an important location in the run-up to, and during the the American Revolution (1775 to 1783). Samuel Adams, John Adams, and John Hancock all came from the state, and Boston was the site of the Boston Massacre (1770) and the Boston Tea Party (1773). Additionally, the Battle of Lexington and Concord, and the Battle of Bunker Hill both took place within the state.

In the early 19th century, Massachusetts became a leader in industrialization. Textiles mills were established in Boston, and the United States' first commercial railroad, the Granite Railway, was established in 1826.

Immediately, following the American Revolution, Massachusetts had been the first state to assert that slavery was no longer permitted. In the first half of the 19th century, abolitionist sentiment and activity continued to grow within the state. As a result, Massachusetts was one of the first states to respond to President Lincoln's call for troops, and also was the first state to recruit a black regiment, the 54th Massachustts Volunteer Infantry.

In the early years of the 20th century, Massachusetts had a strong industrial economy, with Boston serving as the the second most important port in the country. The economy however began to falter during the 1920s, and the state was hit hard by the Great Depression that began in 1929.

After World War II, and a difficult transition period, Massachusetts gradually transitioned to a largely service and technology based economy. The state is also an important educational center, containing many nationally and internationally reknown colleges and universities, including Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University.


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Massachusetts: A Concise History

By Richard D. Brown

Brand: Univ of Massachusetts Pr
Paperback (400 pages)

Massachusetts: A Concise History
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From the moment the first English colonists landed on the shores of Plymouth Bay, the experiences of the people of Massachusetts have been emblematic of larger themes in American history. The story of the first Pilgrim thanksgiving is commemorated as a national holiday, while the Boston Tea Party and Paul Revere's ride have passed into the national mythology. Even the grimmer aspects of the American experience―Indian warfare and the conquest of an ever expanding frontier―were part of the early history of Massachusetts. In this book, Richard D. Brown and Jack Tager survey the rich heritage of this distinctive, and distinctly American, place, showing how it has long exerted an influence disproportionate to its size. A seedbed of revolt against British colonial rule, Massachusetts has supplied the nation with a long line of political leaders―from Samuel and John Adams to William Lloyd Garrison and Lucy Stone to John, Robert, and Edward Kennedy. Its early textile mills helped shape the industrial revolution, while its experiences with urbanization, immigration, ethnic conflict, and labor strife reflected the growth of the national economy. In the twentieth century, the state continued to lead the country through a series of wrenching economic changes as it moved from the production of goods to the provision of services, eventually becoming a center of the high-tech revolution in telecommunications. If there is one common theme in the Bay State's history, Brown and Tager make clear, it is the capacity to adapt to change. In part this trait can be attributed to the state's unique blend of resources, including its many distinguished colleges and universities. But it can also be credited to the people themselves, who have created a singular sense of place by reconciling claims of tradition with the possibilities of innovation. This book tells their story.

Urban Archaeology Boston: Discovering the History Hidden in Plain Sight

By Dan Tobyne

Down East Books
Released: 2018-08-01
Hardcover (152 pages)

Urban Archaeology Boston: Discovering the History Hidden in Plain Sight
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Cities are constantly changing, constantly under construction, constantly moving forward. But if you know how and where to look, and if you look carefully, much of the past is waiting to be rediscovered beneath the façade of progress. Dan Tobyne leads readers on a contemporary archaeological tour of Boston, revealing fascinating aspects of the city’s history through what remains of old buildings, structures, streets, and even such mundane objects as manhole covers, callboxes, and trash cans.

The Natural History of Eastern Massachusetts - Second Edition

By Stan Freeman

Hampshire House Publishing
Paperback (124 pages)

The Natural History of Eastern Massachusetts - Second Edition
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First published in 1998, "The Natural History of Eastern Massachusetts" is a comprehensive guide to the nature of the state east of Quabbin Reservoir. This more sophisticated second edition brings all the original material up to date and adds many new articles. It contains more than 400 full-color photographs, maps and illustrations. Everything from bears and beavers to snakes and spiders is covered. Learn about the region's geology, its rivers and mountains. Find out how it was formed by the ice age and volcanic activity. Learn about the first human residents. There are charts showing when wildflowers bloom and when butterflies are on the wing. There are checklists of common birds, trees, wildflowers and butterflies. There is also a calendar showing when events in nature happen through the months.

Reviews for the first edition

"A wonderful introduction to the history and features of Massachusetts east of Quabbin Reservoir ... Chock full of gorgeous photographs ... It's also lots of fun." -- North Andover Citizen



"If you buy a copy for your kids, you'll have a hard time putting it down yourself. The text by Stan Freeman is clear but does not oversimplify the science, and the illustrations by Mike Nasuti are outstanding." -- The Quincy Patriot Ledger

"A fascinating, richly illustrated guide ... A delight for naturalists of all ages." -- New England Wild Flower Society, online book guide

A History of Howard Johnson's: How a Massachusetts Soda Fountain Became an American Icon (American Palate)

By Anthony Mitchell Sammarco

The History Press
Released: 2013-08-13
Paperback (160 pages)

A History of Howard Johnson s: How a Massachusetts Soda Fountain Became an American Icon (American Palate)
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Howard Johnson created an orange-roofed empire of ice cream stands and restaurants that stretched from Maine to Florida and all the way to the West Coast. Popularly known as the "Father of the Franchise Industry," Johnson delivered good food and prices that brought appreciative customers back for more. The attractive white Colonial Revival restaurants, with eye-catching porcelain tile roofs, illuminated cupolas and sea blue shutters, were described in "Reader's Digest" in 1949 as the epitome of "eating places that look like New England town meeting houses dressed up for Sunday." Boston historian and author Anthony M. Sammarco recounts how Howard Johnson introduced twenty-eight flavors of ice cream, the "Tendersweet" clam strips, grilled frankforts and a menu of delicious and traditional foods that families eagerly enjoyed when they traveled.

The Boston Mob Guide: Hit Men, Hoodlums & Hideouts (True Crime)

By Beverly Ford

The History Press
Released: 2011-10-25
Paperback (160 pages)

The Boston Mob Guide: Hit Men, Hoodlums & Hideouts (True Crime)
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The capture of notorious mobster James "Whitey" Bulger closed an infamous chapter in Boston history. Yet the city's criminal underworld has a long and bloody rap sheet that stretches back to the beginning of the twentieth century. Boston journalists Beverly Ford and Stephanie Schorow reveal the underbelly of Boston through profiles of ruthless gangsters like Charles "King" Solomon, the Angiulo brothers, Joseph "The Animal" Barboza, Stephen "The Rifleman" Flemmi and many more. Ford and Schorow navigate the backrooms and seedy hangouts where deadly hits and lucrative heists were hatched to guide readers to the real story of Boston's gangster past.

A History of Rehoboth, Massachusetts: Its History for 275 Years, 1643-1918, in Which Is Incorporated the Vital Parts of the Original History of the Town

By George Henry Tilton

Franklin Classics
Hardcover (522 pages)

A History of Rehoboth, Massachusetts: Its History for 275 Years, 1643-1918, in Which Is Incorporated the Vital Parts of the Original History of the Town
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This work has been selected by scholars as being culturally important and is part of the knowledge base of civilization as we know it.

This work is in the public domain in the United States of America, and possibly other nations. Within the United States, you may freely copy and distribute this work, as no entity (individual or corporate) has a copyright on the body of the work.

Scholars believe, and we concur, that this work is important enough to be preserved, reproduced, and made generally available to the public. To ensure a quality reading experience, this work has been proofread and republished using a format that seamlessly blends the original graphical elements with text in an easy-to-read typeface.

We appreciate your support of the preservation process, and thank you for being an important part of keeping this knowledge alive and relevant.

The Maritime History Of Massachusetts, 1783-1860

By Samuel Eliot Morison

Alpha Editions
Paperback (536 pages)

The Maritime History Of Massachusetts, 1783-1860
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This book has been considered by academicians and scholars of great significance and value to literature. This forms a part of the knowledge base for future generations. We have represented this book in the same form as it was first published. Hence any marks seen are left intentionally to preserve its true nature.

Hidden History of Salem

By Susanne Saville

Brand: The History Press
Released: 2010-10-11
Paperback (144 pages)

Hidden History of Salem
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Salem, nestled along the rocky coast of Massachusetts, has long been synonymous with witches, despite efforts to emphasize other aspects of the city's rich history. In this fascinating collection of stories, author Susanne Saville sheds light on the forgotten moments of this noteworthy New England community. Discover Salem's profitable "Age of Sail," the important role coffeehouses played during the American Revolution, the scandalous life of Richard Crowninshield Jr. and the unforgettable writer Nathaniel Hawthorne. These revealing stories will not leave the history of Salem in the shadows for long.

An Early History of Malden (Brief History)

By Frank Russell

The History Press
Released: 2018-06-11
Paperback (128 pages)

An Early History of Malden (Brief History)
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Settled in the 1640s and originally a part of Charlestown, Malden grew over two centuries into a thriving residential and manufacturing city. Meet fiery revolutionary Peter Thacher and Malden industrialist and philanthropist Elisha Converse. Explore the details of the first bank robbery homicide in the United States. Learn about Malden's instructions for independence, which predated the Declaration of Independence. Delve into the suspicion and intrigue surrounding the infamous murder of Frank Converse. Author Frank Russell brings to life the first 250 years of Malden history.

Nightwork: A History of Hacks and Pranks at MIT (The MIT Press)

By Institute Historian T. F. Peterson

The MIT Press
Released: 2011-03-11
Paperback (248 pages)

Nightwork: A History of Hacks and Pranks at MIT (The MIT Press)
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A lively introduction to MIT hacks, from the police car on the Great Dome to the abduction of the Caltech cannon.

An MIT "hack" is an ingenious, benign, and anonymous prank or practical joke, often requiring engineering or scientific expertise and often pulled off under cover of darkness―instances of campus mischief sometimes coinciding with April Fool's Day, final exams, or commencement. (It should not be confused with the sometimes non-benign phenomenon of computer hacking.) Noteworthy MIT hacks over the years include the legendary Harvard–Yale Football Game Hack (when a weather balloon emblazoned “MIT” popped out of the ground near the 50-yard line), the campus police car found perched on the Great Dome, the apparent disappearance of the Institute president's office, and a faux cathedral (complete with stained glass windows, organ, and wedding ceremony) in a lobby. Hacks are by their nature ephemeral, although they live on in the memory of both perpetrators and spectators. Nightwork, drawing on the MIT Museum's unique collection of hack-related photographs and other materials, describes and documents the best of MIT's hacks and hacking culture. This generously illustrated updated edition has added coverage of such recent hacks as the cross-country abduction of rival Caltech's cannon (a prank requiring months of planning, intricate choreography, and last-minute improvisation), a fire truck on the Dome that marked the fifth anniversary of 9/11, and numerous pokes at the celebrated Frank Gehry-designed Stata Center, and even a working solar-powered Red Line subway car on the Great Dome. Hacks have been said to express the essence of MIT, providing, as alumnus Andre DeHon observes, "an opportunity to demonstrate creativity and know-how in mastering the physical world." What better way to mark the 150th anniversary of MIT's founding than to commemorate its native ingenuity with this new edition of Nightwork?



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