Abington, Massachusetts

Abington is a town in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States, 20 miles (32 km) southeast of Boston. The population was 15,985 at the 2010 census.[2]

Abington, Massachusetts
Abington Town Offices
Abington Town Offices
Official seal of Abington, Massachusetts

Location in Plymouth County in Massachusetts
Location in Plymouth County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°06′17″N 70°56′45″W / 42.10472°N 70.94583°WCoordinates: 42°06′17″N 70°56′45″W / 42.10472°N 70.94583°W
CountryUnited States
Named forAbingdon-on-Thames, UK
 • TypeOpen Town Meeting
 • Total9.9 sq mi (25.6 km2)
 • Land9.7 sq mi (25.0 km2)
 • Water0.2 sq mi (0.6 km2)
108 ft (33 m)
 • Total15,985
 • Density1,600/sq mi (620/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code339 / 781
FIPS code25-00135
GNIS feature ID0618336


Before the Europeans made their claim to the area, the local Native Americans referred to the area as Manamooskeagin, meaning "great green place of shaking grass." Two streams in the area were named for the large beaver population: Schumacastacut or "upper beaver brook" and Schumacastuscacant or "lower beaver brook."[3]

Abington was first settled by European settlers in 1668. The lands included the current towns of Bridgewater, Rockland, Whitman, and parts of Hanover. The town was officially incorporated in 1712,[1] having been named six years earlier by Governor Joseph Dudley as a tribute to Anne Venables-Bertie, Countess of Abingdon, wife of the second Earl of Abingdon, who helped him secure the governorship of the colony from Queen Anne. The Earl of Abingdon is named from Abingdon-on-Thames in Oxfordshire (then Berkshire), UK. Indeed, the original petition from Governor Dudley ordered that "the Town be named Abingdon". A marginal note on the document gave the spelling as "Abington" as it has been known ever since.[3]

In 1769, an iron foundry was established within the town. In 1815, Jesse Reed invented a machine that mass-produced tacks, which in turn led to the shoe industry becoming established in the town.[1] During the nineteenth and early twentieth century, the manufacture of boots and shoes was its primary industry, with nearly half of the footwear provided for the Union Army during the Civil War being provided by Abington factories.[1] From 1846 to 1865, Abington was a center of the abolitionist movement.[1] In 1874 and 1875, the towns of Rockland and Whitman, respectively, separated and incorporated as towns.

In 1893, the town was the site of a riot between town constables and workers from the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad, over the town's rights to build a streetcar line that crossed the railroad's tracks. The town eventually built the line, and as a "peace offering", the railroad built the North Abington Depot building, which was built in the style of H. H. Richardson.[4]


Abington has evolved into a predominantly residential community with some light manufacturing including printing and machine-tool.[1]


Abington is located at 42°7′10″N 70°56′52″W / 42.11944°N 70.94778°W (42.119534, -70.947876).[5]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 9.9 square miles (25.6 km2), of which 9.7 square miles (25.0 km2) is land and 0.23 square miles (0.6 km2), or 2.41%, is water.[6]

Abington ranks 308th of 351 communities in the Commonwealth, and is the fourth-smallest town (behind Hull, Whitman and Rockland) in Plymouth County. Abington is bordered by Holbrook to the northwest, Weymouth to the northeast, Rockland to the east, Whitman to the south, and Brockton to the west. Abington is considered to be an inland town of the South Shore, and is located approximately 20 miles (32 km) south of Boston.

Abington has two major waterways; the Shumatuscacant River to the west provides the town's border with Brockton, and Beaver Brook runs through the eastern part of town; it was the source of much of the water power used by the shoe factories. In the northwestern corner of town lies Ames Nowell State Park, a large forested area around Cleveland Pond. Island Grove Pond was created in the 1700s, when a dam was built on the Shumatuscacant River. Much of the town's population is centered on the eastern side of town, closer to the former town geographic center. The northeast corner of town is also the site of portions of the runways of the South Weymouth Naval Air Station, which was closed in 1997 as a part of the fourth round of BRAC base closures.


The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen climate classification system, Abington has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[7]


Historical population
* = population estimate.
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.[8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17]

As of the census of 2010, there were 15,985 people, 6,080 households, and 4,111 families residing in the town with 6,377 total housing units. The racial makeup of the town was 92.5% White, 2.1% Black or African American, 0.3% American Indian and Alaska Native, 1.8% Asian, 0.0% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander, 1.9% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.9% of the population.

There were 6,080 households out of which 33.6% had individuals under the age of 18 living with them, 51.8% were married couples living together, 4.5% had a male householder with no wife present, 11.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.4% were non-families. 25.1% of all households consisted of someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.18.

In the town, the age distribution of the population shows 25.2% under the age of 19, 5.6% from 20 to 24, 27.7% from 25 to 44, 29.5% from 45 to 64, and 11.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.5 years. Males made up 48.9% of the population, while females made up 51.1%.[18]

The median income for a household in the town, based on a 2006–2010 projection, was $74,589.[19] In 2000, the median income for a family was $68,826. Males had a median income of $44,151 versus $30,923 for females. The per capita income for the town was $23,380. About 2.1% of families and 3.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.1% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or over.

Statistically speaking, Abington is the 125th largest community by population in the Commonwealth, and ranks 71st by population density. Its population is lower than the population average but above the median; the population density is above the average.


On the national level, Abington is a part of Massachusetts's 8th congressional district, and is represented by Stephen Lynch. The state's senior (Class II) member of the United States Senate, elected in 2012, is Elizabeth Warren. The junior (Class I) senator, elected in 2013, is Edward Markey.

On the state level, Abington is represented in the Massachusetts House of Representatives as a part of the Seventh Plymouth district, which includes the towns of East Bridgewater and Whitman. The Seventh Plymouth district is represented by Alyson Sullivan. The town is represented in the Massachusetts Senate by John Keenan, as a part of the Norfolk and Plymouth District, which includes Holbrook, Quincy, Rockland and part of Braintree.[20] The town is patrolled by the First (Norwell) Barracks of Troop D of the Massachusetts State Police.[21]

Abington is governed by the open town meeting form of government, and is led by a town manager and a board of selectmen. The town operates its own police and fire department, with firehouses located in the north and south of town along Route 18. There are two post offices in town, on Route 123 east of Route 18 and on Route 58 north of Route Route 139. The Abington Public Library, a member of the Old Colony Library Network, is located adjacent to the town hall, both of which opened in 1997 across from the high school. The town operates a park, Island Grove Park, located in the southeast of town. The current Board of Selectmen as of May 2019 includes Thomas Connolly (Chairman), Timothy Chapin (Vice-Chairman), Kenneth Coyle, Kevin DiMarzio, and James Connolly.[22]


There are two main north-south routes through town, Route 18 and Route 58, the latter terminating at the former just a 0.5 miles (800 m) north of the town line. Route 123 and Route 139 run east to west through the town, with Route 139 being the more northern route. There is no freeway access to town; the town is located between Route 24 and Route 3.

The former Old Colony Railroad line runs through the eastern part of town, and is currently used as a part of the Plymouth-Kingston route of the MBTA's commuter rail line. There is a stop in Abington, just southwest of the intersection of Routes 123 and 58. A spur off the line formerly went into the town of Rockland; that spur is now abandoned. There is no air service in the town; the nearest national and international air service can be found at Logan International Airport in Boston.


On June 10, 2012, Abington celebrated the 300th anniversary of its incorporation.[23]

The town annually holds festivals celebrating Founders Day (the first weekend in June), Halloween, and Christmas.

Notable people


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Hoiberg, Dale H., ed. (2010). "Abington". Encyclopædia Britannica. I: A-ak Bayes (15th ed.). Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica Inc. p. 33. ISBN 978-1-59339-837-8.
  2. ^ "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Abington town, Massachusetts". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2012.
  3. ^ a b "Historical Society of Old Abington". Dyer Memorial Library. Retrieved 8 February 2016.
  4. ^ "Abington Historical Commission: Abington's Nationally Registered History". abingtonhistory.org.
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  6. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Abington town, Massachusetts". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2012.
  7. ^ "Climate Summary for Abington, Massachusetts". weatherbase.com.
  8. ^ "Total Population (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010.
  9. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  10. ^ "1990 Census of Population, General Population Characteristics: Massachusetts" (PDF). US Census Bureau. December 1990. Table 76: General Characteristics of Persons, Households, and Families: 1990. 1990 CP-1-23. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  11. ^ "1980 Census of the Population, Number of Inhabitants: Massachusetts" (PDF). US Census Bureau. December 1981. Table 4. Populations of County Subdivisions: 1960 to 1980. PC80-1-A23. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  12. ^ "1950 Census of Population" (PDF). Bureau of the Census. 1952. Section 6, Pages 21-10 and 21-11, Massachusetts Table 6. Population of Counties by Minor Civil Divisions: 1930 to 1950. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  13. ^ "1920 Census of Population" (PDF). Bureau of the Census. Number of Inhabitants, by Counties and Minor Civil Divisions. Pages 21-5 through 21-7. Massachusetts Table 2. Population of Counties by Minor Civil Divisions: 1920, 1910, and 1920. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  14. ^ "1890 Census of the Population" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. Pages 179 through 182. Massachusetts Table 5. Population of States and Territories by Minor Civil Divisions: 1880 and 1890. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  15. ^ "1870 Census of the Population" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1872. Pages 217 through 220. Table IX. Population of Minor Civil Divisions, &c. Massachusetts. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  16. ^ "1860 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1864. Pages 220 through 226. State of Massachusetts Table No. 3. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  17. ^ "1850 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  18. ^ U.S. Census Bureau FactFinder Archived September 11, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ "QuickFacts". U.S. Census Bureau.
  20. ^ "Index of Legislative Representation by City and Town". Mass.gov.
  21. ^ "Station D-1, SP Norwell". Mass.gov.
  22. ^ "Board of Selectmen". abingtonma.gov.
  23. ^ "Abington 300th". abington300th.webs.com. Archived from the original on 2012-05-25.
  24. ^ Halper, Donna. "Big Brother Bob Emery". BostonRadio.org. Retrieved October 13, 2014.
  25. ^ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1963.
  26. ^ Belkin, Douglas (October 27, 2005). "Is killer's life story best left untold?". The Boston Globe.
  27. ^ "Judge Martha Ware of Abington remembered as 'awesome woman'". The Patriot Ledger. August 7, 2009.

External links

Aaron Hobart

Aaron Hobart (June 26, 1787 – September 19, 1858) was a U.S. Representative from Massachusetts. Born in Abington, Massachusetts, Hobart pursued classical studies and graduated from Brown University in 1805. He studied law, was admitted to the bar and commenced practice in Abington. He served as member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and served in the Massachusetts State Senate.

Hobart was elected as a Democratic-Republican to the Sixteenth Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Zabdiel Sampson. He was reelected as a Democratic-Republican to the Seventeenth Congress, elected as an Adams-Clay Republican to the Eighteenth Congress, and reelected as an Adams candidate to the Nineteenth Congress, and served from November 24, 1820, to March 3, 1827.

He declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1826. He then served as an Executive councilor 1827-1831 and served as probate judge 1843-1858. He died in East Bridgewater, Massachusetts, September 19, 1858, and was interred in Central Cemetery.

Abington High School

Abington Middle/High School is a public co-located middle and high school located in Abington, Massachusetts.

It is located at 201 Gliniewicz Way and has an enrollment of 1,202 students in grades Pre-K and 5–12. The school's mascot is the Green Wave and the school colors are Green and White. Abington High School is known best for its outstanding football program, which has won four state titles and seven league championships since 2002. Gliniewicz Way was named after Richard Francis Gliniewicz born December 12, 1947, and was killed in South Vietnam on May 31, 1969. He was a 1966 graduate of Abington High School.

Alyson Sullivan

Alyson Sullivan is a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. A resident of Abington, Massachusetts, she was elected as a Republican to represent the 7th Plymouth district. Sullivan was elected after Representative Geoff Diehl decided to run against Elizabeth Warren in the 2018 U.S. Senate Election. Sullivan is also the daughter of former State Representative and ATF Director Michael Sullivan.

Ames Nowell State Park

Ames Nowell State Park is a 700-acre (280 ha) Massachusetts state park located in the town of Abington. The park is managed by the Department of Conservation and Recreation

(DCR) (in season, a Forest and Park Supervisor I; off season, the ranger station at Wompatuck State Park).


The Buffum was an American automobile manufactured from 1901 until 1907 by the H.H. Buffum Co. of Abington, Massachusetts. The company also built a line of powered launches.

Henry B. Pierce

Henry Bailey Pierce was a Massachusetts insurance executive and politician who served as Secretary of the Commonwealth from 1876 to 1891.

Island Grove Park

Island Grove Park is a municipal park of the town of Abington, Massachusetts. It consists of a 17-acre (6.9 ha) parcel of land whose principal feature is a peninsula jutting into Island Grove Pond, a 35-acre (14 ha) body of water which was created by impounding the Shumatuscacant River in c. 1700. The area has a significant history, first as an industrial site, then as an amusement park, before it became the wooded park it is now. The park was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2002 as the Island Grove Park National Register District.

Joe Callahan

Joseph Michael Callahan (born December 20, 1982) is an American former professional ice hockey defenseman who played in the National Hockey League. Callahan was born in Brockton, Massachusetts, but grew up in nearby Abington.

John R. Buckley

John R. Buckley (born January 1, 1932 in Rockland, Massachusetts) is an American politician who served as Massachusetts Secretary of Administration and Finance from 1975 to 1979, member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives from 1965 to 1975, and Abington, Massachusetts Town Treasurer from 1961 to 1965. He was a candidate for state Democratic party chairman in 1971, but lost to State Treasurer Robert Q. Crane.

His son John R. Buckley, Jr. is the Plymouth County, Massachusetts Register of Deeds.

Larry Murphy (actor)

Lawrence "Larry" Murphy, Jr. (born March 12, 1972 in Abington, Massachusetts) is an American actor, voice actor and comedian, known for his work on the TV series Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Ugly Americans, Delocated and Bob's Burgers.

Levi Reed

Levi Reed (December 31, 1814 – October 18, 1869) was an American politician who served as Auditor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Route 123

Route 123 is a west–east state highway in southeastern Massachusetts. It crosses northern Bristol and Plymouth counties, crossing several highways along the way.

Massachusetts Route 139

Route 139 is nominally a west–east state highway in southeastern Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Route 58

Route 58 is a south–north highway in southeastern Massachusetts. For all but its final 0.4 miles (0.64 km), the route lies within Plymouth County.

Michael Driscoll (baseball)

Michael Columbus Driscoll (October 19, 1892 – March 22, 1953) was an American professional baseball pitcher with the Philadelphia Athletics during the 1916 season. He was born in North Abington, Massachusetts and attended the University of Maine, where he played college baseball for the Black Bears in the 1910s. He died in 1953 and was buried in Easton, Massachusetts.

Mike Hazen

Michael Norman Hazen (born January 7, 1976) is an American professional baseball executive and current executive vice president and general manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks of Major League Baseball (MLB). A Princeton University graduate and former minor league outfielder, he previously served as the GM and senior vice president of the Boston Red Sox and worked under Ben Cherington.

Pete Smith (baseball, born 1966)

Peter John Smith (born February 27, 1966) is a former Major League Baseball starting pitcher, born in Abington, Massachusetts. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the first round (21st overall pick) in the 1984 Major League Baseball draft. Smith was signed on June 14, 1984 to play in the Philadelphia Phillies organization. He batted and threw right-handed during his baseball career.

Shumatuscacant River

The Shumatuscacant River is an 8.8-mile-long (14.2 km) river running through Abington and Whitman, Massachusetts. It forms part of the Taunton River Watershed.

The river arises in a wetland just west of Vineyard Road, Abington, and flows to Poor Meadow Brook in Hanson, which then flows southwest to Robbins Pond. From there, the Satucket River originates in Robbins Pond and meanders west to join the Matfield River in East Bridgewater, thence to the Taunton River. Island Grove Pond formed in the 1700s when a dam was built on the Shumatuscacant River.

William Hayes Ward

William Hayes Ward (June 25, 1835 - August 29, 1916) was an American clergyman, editor, and Orientalist, born at Abington, Mass.

He graduated from Phillips Academy, Andover, in 1852, Amherst College in 1856, and the Andover Theological Seminary in 1859. He served as pastor of a church at Oskaloosa, Kans. in 1859-60, and as professor of Latin at Ripon College in Wisconsin (1865–68). He joined the editorial staff of the New York Independent in 1868 and remained with the Independent thereafter, rising by degrees to editor in chief (1896–1913), and then honorary editor. He directed the Wolfe Expedition to Babylonia (1884–85) and was twice president of the American Oriental Society (1890–94 and 1909–10). He was the father of Herbert D. Ward. His works include:

The World's Christian Hymns (1883), with his sister Susan Hayes Ward

Report of the Wolfe Expedition to Babylonia (1885)

Biography of Sidney Lanier (1885)

Cylinders and Other Ancient Oriental Seals in the Library of J. Pierpont Morgan (1909)

The Seal Cylinders of Western Asia (1910)

What I Believe and Why (1915)

Municipalities and communities of Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States
Major cities
Cities and towns
Cities and towns
Cities and towns

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.