Braintree (US: /ˈbreɪnˌtri/), officially the Town of Braintree, is a suburban New England city in Norfolk County, Massachusetts, United States. Although officially known as a town, Braintree adopted a municipal charter, effective 2008, with a mayor-council form of government, and is considered a city under Massachusetts law. The population was 35,744 at the 2010 census. The town is part of the Greater Boston area with access to the MBTA Red Line, and is a member of the Metropolitan Area Planning Council's South Shore Coalition. The first and current mayor of Braintree is Joe Sullivan.
Braintree, Massachusetts is named after Braintree, Essex in England. The town was first chartered in 1640. Later, some sections of Braintree formed separate municipalities: Quincy (1792), Randolph (1793), and Holbrook (1872).
|City of Braintree|
The Braintree Town Hall in 2009
Location in Norfolk County in Massachusetts
Location in the United States
|• Mayor||Joseph C. Sullivan (D)|
|• Total||14.5 sq mi (37.6 km2)|
|• Land||13.9 sq mi (36.0 km2)|
|• Water||0.6 sq mi (1.6 km2)|
|Elevation||90 ft (27 m)|
| • Estimate |
|• Density||2,500/sq mi (950/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−4 (Eastern)|
02184/02185 (Braintree Highlands)
|Area code(s)||339 / 781|
|FIPS code||25-07740, 25-07665|
|GNIS feature ID||0618316|
The town of Braintree was settled in 1625, colonized in 1635 and incorporated in 1640 and named after the English town of Braintree. In addition to the present Braintree, it comprised land that was later split-off into the separate municipalities of Quincy (incorporated in 1792), Randolph (1793), and Holbrook (1872). Braintree was part of Suffolk County until the formation of Norfolk County in 1793.
The town of Braintree was the birthplace of presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams, as well as statesman John Hancock. General Sylvanus Thayer, the "father of West Point", was born in the section of town now known as Braintree Highlands.
Braintree's population grew by over 50% during the 1920s.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 14.5 square miles (37.6 km²), of which 13.9 square miles (36.0 km²) is land and 0.6 sq mi (1.6 km²) is water. The total area is 4.34% water
Braintree has a humid continental climate (Köppen Dfb) with some maritime influence. Summers are typically warm to hot, rainy, and humid, while winters oscillate between periods of cold rain and snow, with cold temperatures. Spring and fall are usually mild, with varying conditions dependent on wind direction and jet stream positioning. Prevailing wind patterns that blow offshore minimize the influence of the Atlantic Ocean.
The hottest month is July, with a mean temperature of 69.7 °F (20.9 °C). The coldest month is January, with a mean of 25.7 °F (−3.5 °C). Periods exceeding 90 °F (32 °C) in summer and below freezing in winter are not uncommon but rarely extended, with about 13 and 25 days per year seeing each, respectively. The city's average window for freezing temperatures is November 9 through April 5. Official temperature records have ranged from −21 °F (−29 °C) in February 1934, up to 101 °F (38 °C) in August 1949 and 1974.
Braintree's coastal location on the North Atlantic moderates its temperature, but makes the city very prone to nor'easter weather systems that can produce much snow and rain. The city averages 48.63 inches (1,240 mm) of precipitation a year, with 61.1 inches (155 cm) of snowfall per season. Snowfall increases dramatically as one goes inland away from the city (especially north and west of the city)—away from the moderating influence of the ocean.
Most snowfall occurs from December through March, as most years see no measurable snow in April and November, and snow is rare in May and October. There is also high year-to-year variability in snowfall; for instance, the winter of 2011−12 saw only 24.2 in (61.5 cm) of accumulating snow, but in the 2014–15 winter, the figure was 150.8 in (3.83 m).
Fog is fairly common, particularly in spring and early summer, and the occasional tropical storm or hurricane can threaten the region, especially in late summer and early autumn. Due to its situation along the North Atlantic, the city is often subjected to sea breezes, especially in the late spring, when water temperatures are still quite cold and temperatures at the coast can be more than 20 °F (11 °C) colder than a few miles inland, sometimes dropping by that amount near midday.
Thunderstorms occur from May to September, and are occasionally severe with large hail, damaging winds and heavy downpours. Although Braintree has never been struck by a violent tornado, the city has experienced many tornado warnings. Damaging storms are more common in areas north, west, and northwest of the city.
|* = population estimate.|
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.
As of the census of 2000, there were 33,828 people, 12,652 households, and 8,907 families residing in the town. The population density was 2,434.4 people per square mile (939.6/km²). There were 12,973 housing units at an average density of 933.6 per square mile (360.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 93.96% White, 1.18% Black or African American, 0.11% Native American, 3.14% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.64% from other races, and 0.95% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino people of any race were 1.16% of the population. More than 46% of town residents have Irish ancestry. As of 2014 Braintree had the 2nd highest concentration of Irish Americans in the entire country, slightly behind Scituate, Massachusetts.
There were 12,652 households out of which 29.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.4% were married couples living together, 11.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.6% were non-families. 24.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.16.
In the town the population was spread out with 22.5% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 28.9% from 25 to 44, 24.0% from 45 to 64, and 18.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 89.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.4 males.
The median income for a household in the town is $85,590, and the median income for a family is $90,590 as of a 2007 estimate). Males had a median income of $89,607 versus $36,034 for females. The per capita income for the town was $28,683. About 2.1% of families and 3.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.6% of those under age 18 and 3.3% of those age 65 or over.
Braintree High School participates in the Bay State Conference, a Division 1 conference in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association. The girls' basketball team has won back-to-back state championships and finished 2014 undefeated. The Braintree High dance team competes at the regional and national stage. The Wamps baseball team won the Super Eight Baseball Tournament in 2015 over St. John's Preparatory School in their second-straight finals appearance.
The Braintree Athletic Complex is scheduled to be located at Braintree High School and will feature two ice hockey rinks, a basketball court, a multi-use court, a swimming pool and an indoor baseball diamond.
Braintree is home to various educational institutions, both private and public.
Public education at the primary and secondary levels is managed by Braintree Public Schools (BPS), a system that includes one kindergarten center, six elementary schools, two middle schools and one high school.
Private and alternative education institutions in Braintree include Thayer Academy (TA) and Archbishop Williams High School (AWHS). CATS Academy, an internationally focused boarding school with three campuses in the United Kingdom, is in the process of building a school in the Braintree Highlands area and planned to open in 2016.
Braintree is situated in the Greater Boston Area, which has rail, air, and highway facilities. State Route 128 and Interstate 95 divide the region into inner and outer zones, which are connected by numerous "spokes" providing direct access to the airport, port, and intermodal facilities of Boston.
From 1948 to 1968, the town was the home of Braintree Airport, a general aviation airport located near Great Pond that was used by civil defense officials and private pilots. The airport featured a 2,800 foot dirt runway and offered flight training. Residential development, proximity to the town's water supply, and a number of accidents led to its closure in 1968.
Principal highways in Braintree are Interstate 93 (which runs concurrently with U.S. 1) and Route 3, as well as 37, and 53. Entering Braintree from the north, I-93, Route 1, and Route 3 all run concurrently as the Southeast Expressway from Boston; in Braintree they diverge, with Route 3 heading south toward Cape Cod as the Pilgrims Highway, and I-93 and Route 1 heading west toward Route 128.
Commuter rail service to South Station, Boston, is available on the Middleboro & Plymouth lines from the Braintree Red Line/Commuter Rail Station located on Union Street. The CapeFLYER rail service from Boston to Hyannis as well as Buzzards Bay stations also stops at Braintree Station. The MBTA Red Line is accessible at the same location. Weekday rail service on the Greenbush Line started in late 2007 and is accessible from the Weymouth Landing/East Braintree station on Quincy Avenue. In July 2017, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and other Baker administration transportation officials visited a construction project in the city to highlight $2.8 billion spent during Baker's administration on highway construction projects and improvements to bridges, intersections, and sidewalks.
From 1964 to 1991 Braintree was the home of a Valle's Steak House restaurant. The chain was an East Coast landmark that stretched from Maine to Florida. The 30,000 square foot Braintree restaurant was the largest in the chain when it opened, and featured a dining room that sat 600 customers, banquet rooms that accommodated 1,000, parking for 700 cars, and two kitchens, one used exclusively for banquets. The restaurant had over 150 employees. Max Bodner of Quincy was the original manager. One of the chain's busiest locations, it was capable of serving over 5,000 customers per day. The restaurant changed names several times after the Valle's corporation closed in 1991 and was eventually razed to make way for a Toyota dealership. Among the notable moments in the restaurant's history was in 1980 when then presidential candidate Ronald Reagan made a campaign speech at a South Shore Chamber of Commerce luncheon.
Braintree was founded on land first colonized in 1625 by Captain Wollaston, and initially named Mount Wollaston.
Incorporated in 1640, Braintree has a rich history and a promising future.
In November 2007, Joe Sullivan was elected as the first Mayor of Braintree and in November 2011, he was re-elected.
The area was resettled and incorporated as the town of Braintree in 1640, on land which is now part of the current town of Braintree, from which Randolph, Holbrook, the City of Quincy.
Braintree defended its state title and solidified a legacy as one of the most consistently excellent girls hoop teams ever in the Bay State with a 64-43 victory over the scrappy Eagles.
The Braintree High School varsity dance team won two first place dance titles at the New England High School Dance Championship at Bellows Falls Union High School in Bellows Falls, Vt., March 8.
Alexander De Witt (April 2, 1798 – January 13, 1879) was a 19th-century American politician from the state of Massachusetts.
Born in New Braintree, Massachusetts, De Witt worked in textile manufacturing in Oxford, Massachusetts. Active in politics as a Democrat, he was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1830, serving until 1836. He served in the Massachusetts State Senate in 1842, 1844, 1850, and 1851.An anti-slavery activist, De Witt later joined the Free Soil Party. As a Free Soiler he was elected to the United States Congress in 1853. In January 1854, he was one of six signatories of the "Appeal of the Independent Democrats", drafted to oppose the Kansas-Nebraska Act.
After the demise of the Free Soil Party, De Witt joined the American Party, then the only major party with an anti-slavery platform. He won a second term in 1854, and served in the 34th Congress.He was defeated in his 1856 bid for reelection and returned to his previous work as a textile manufacturer. De Witt later became a Republican, and supported the Union during the American Civil War by participating in efforts to recruit and equip soldiers for Massachusetts regiments.
De Witt died in Oxford on January 13, 1879. He is buried in Oxford's South Cemetery.Archbishop Williams High School
Archbishop Williams High School is a co-educational Catholic school in Braintree, Massachusetts, United States. It was founded in 1949 by the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth.
Archbishop Williams' school seal, originally that of the founding order of nuns, is the pelican, which was an early Christian symbol of Jesus. The school's motto is Caritas Christi Urget Nos, or "The Love of Christ Drives Us On." Blue and gold are the school's colors.
The school is named after John Joseph Williams, the first Archbishop of Boston. Archbishop Williams High School was dedicated on September 12, 1949, by Cardinal Richard Cushing.
In the fall of 2014 Archbishop Williams added a 7th & 8th grade program. The 7th & 8th grade program was moved to Nazareth Hall for the 2016-2017 school year. This move was made possible because of renovations done to the building and the addition of the new fine arts center on the second floor.
In the fall of 2016 Archbishop Williams unveiled its new science lab located on the top floor of the school as well as its new training and workout center located underneath the gym. Along with these changes the school has added a walkway and amphitheater in accordance with the ongoing campus beautification project.
Tuition is $13,800 for grades 9–12 and $11,700 for grades 7-8 for the 2017 & 2018 school year.Boo Morcom
Albert Richmond "Boo" Morcom (May 1, 1921 – October 3, 2012) was an American track and field athlete.Braintree Airport
Braintree Airport was an airport located in the town of Braintree, Massachusetts from 1948 to 1968. The airport was used for general aviation purposes until encroaching residential development forced its closure.Braintree High School
Braintree High School (BHS) is a four-year secondary school located in Braintree, Massachusetts, within Norfolk County. The school is part of the Braintree Public Schools district and is located to the northwest side of Sunset Lake at 128 Town Street.Braintree Public Schools
The Braintree Public School District, located in Braintree, Massachusetts, includes Hollis Elementary School, Donald Ross Elementary School, Archie T. Morrison Elementary School, Liberty Elementary School, Mary E. Flaherty Elementary School (formerly Lakeside Elementary School), Highlands Elementary School, East Middle School, South Middle School, and Braintree High School. Monatiquot Elementary School is now the Monatiquot School Kindergarten Center for full-day kindergarten students in Braintree.Braintree station (MBTA)
Braintree is an intermodal transit station in Braintree, Massachusetts. It serves the MBTA's Red Line and the MBTA Commuter Rail Old Colony Lines as well as MBTA Buses.
It is located at Ivory and Union Streets. The tracks of the Red Line and commuter rail lines are all parallel to one another, their platforms are offset; the commuter rail platform is located north of Union Street, while the Red Line platform is south of the street. The station features a large park and ride garage, with space for 1,322 automobiles. Braintree is fully accessible on all modes.Charles Delano
Charles Delano (June 24, 1820 – January 23, 1883) was a U.S. Representative from Massachusetts.
Born in New Braintree, Massachusetts, Delano moved with his parents to Amherst in 1833.
He attended the common schools and graduated from Amherst College in 1840, where he studied law. Delano was admitted to the bar in 1842 and commenced practice in Amherst. He moved to Northampton in 1848 and continued the practice of law. He served as Treasurer of Hampshire County from 1849 to 1858.
Delano was elected as a Republican to the Thirty-sixth and Thirty-seventh Congresses. He was not a candidate for renomination in 1862, and resumed the practice of law.
In 1874, Delano was appointed to be an assistant coroner for the inquest into deaths that resulted from a dam break on the Mill River, which caused a flood in Williamsburg, Massachusetts. Later he served as a trustee of the Clarke School for the Education of the Deaf from 1877 to 1883.
Delano was appointed by Governor Alexander H. Rice in 1878 to act as special counsel for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in matters relating to the Hoosac Tunnel and the Troy and Greenfield Railroad, and served in this capacity until his death in Northampton on January 23, 1883. He was interred in Bridge Street Cemetery.Elihu Adams
Elihu Adams (May 29, 1741 – August 10, 1775) was a soldier in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. He was born in Braintree to John Adams, Sr. and Susanna Boylston; his elder brothers were John Adams, the second President of the United States, and Peter Boylston Adams, who also served as a militia captain during the Revolution. He married Thankful White in 1765, and had at least two children - Susanna, born in 1766, and John, born in 1768.Adams served as captain of the Braintree Company at the Siege of Boston, and as a minuteman who fought on the Concord Green in 1775. He died of dysentery on August 10, 1775, at the age of 34, and was buried at what is today known as the "Old Section" of Union Cemetery in Holbrook, Massachusetts (then still a part of Braintree).Greater Media
Greater Media, Inc., known as Greater Media, was an American media company that specialized in radio stations. The markets where they owned radio stations included Boston, Detroit, Philadelphia, Charlotte, and the state of New Jersey. The company was formed in 1956 in Southbridge, Massachusetts, and its headquarters were located in Braintree, Massachusetts.
Greater Media also published several weekly newspapers in Central New Jersey. The newspaper group won 12 Suburban Newspapers of America awards for 2006.On November 12, 2007, Greater Media announced it was buying three stations in Charlotte, North Carolina from Lincoln Financial Media--WBT, WBT-FM, and WLNK. The deal was finalized on January 31, 2008.
On July 19, 2016, Beasley Broadcast Group announced that it would acquire Greater Media's radio stations for $240 million. The FCC approved the sale on October 6, and the sale closed on October 29. The Greater Media newspapers were sold to the Newspaper Media Group.Horace T. Cahill
Horace Tracy Cahill (December 12, 1894 – August 22, 1976) was an American politician who served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, as Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives and, from 1939 to 1945, as the 54th Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts. In 1944 Cahill was the unsuccessfully Republican candidate for Governor.Jack Manning (baseball)
John E. "Jack" Manning (December 20, 1853 – August 15, 1929) was an American Major League Baseball player. Born in Braintree, Massachusetts, United States, he broke into the National Association in 1873 at the age of 19. His career covered 12 seasons, eight teams, and 3 leagues. He was a primarily a right fielder who also played many games as a pitcher, and would play the infield positions on occasion as well.
On October 9, 1884, when his Philadelphia Quakers ballclub were visiting the Chicago White Stockings in Lakeshore Park, he hit three home runs in the same game, becoming the third player to do so. The first occasions were done by Ned Williamson and Cap Anson. All three had their big game in that hitter-friendly park in 1884.Manning died in Boston, Massachusetts, and was interred at New Calvary Cemetery in Boston.Monatiquot River
The Monatiquot River is a 4.9-mile-long (7.9 km) river in Braintree, Massachusetts, formed by the confluence of the Farm River and Cochato River (42°11′41″N 71°00′46″W) in the Braintree Municipal Golf Course, flowing in swampy meanders to the northeast, and emptying into the tidal Weymouth Fore River estuary. Its drainage area is 28.7 square miles (74 km2).
The river was a key aspect of colonial Braintree for its river herring. Later its strong flow was useful for early industry such as grist mills. It has remained a relatively clean river to date, with wildlife including birds, turtles, muskrats and fish, but recently has been polluted by sediments from the Graziano Inc. concrete batching operation.The river was also where Paul Revere operated a nail mill from when he was alive until the 1860s when the Mill was retooled. That nail company has since moved to southeastern Massachusetts and is still in business today producing nails on the same equipment installed during that 1860s retooling.New Braintree, Massachusetts
New Braintree is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 999 at the 2010 census.Priscilla Chan
Priscilla Chan (born February 24, 1985) is an American pediatrician and philanthropist. She and her husband Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder and CEO of Facebook, established the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative in December 2015, with a pledge to donate 99 percent of their Facebook shares, then valued at $45 billion. She is a graduate of Harvard University and received her medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).Richard Salter Storrs
Richard Salter Storrs (August 21, 1821 – June 7, 1900) was an American Congregational clergyman.South Shore Plaza
South Shore Plaza is a shopping mall in Braintree, Massachusetts. It opened as an open-air plaza in 1961; it was enclosed in 1976 and expanded between 1995–96. With 192 tenants and 1,586,446 sq ft (147,385.7 m2) of gross leasable area, the mall is the largest in New England in terms of square footage and is the 16th-largest mall in the United States. It is currently owned by Simon Property Group.
As of 2019, the mall is anchored by DSW, Lord & Taylor, Macy's, Nordstrom, Sears, Primark, and Target. Previous anchors include Filene's, Filene's Basement, and Jordan Marsh.Sylvanus Thayer
Colonel and Brevet Brigadier General Sylvanus Thayer (June 9, 1785 – September 7, 1872) also known as "the Father of West Point" was an early superintendent of the United States Military Academy at West Point and an early advocate of engineering education in the United States.
|Climate data for Blue Hills Reservation (Blue Hill Meteorological Observatory), 1891−2010 normals, extremes 1885−present|
|Record high °F (°C)||68
|Average high °F (°C)||33.6
|Daily mean °F (°C)||25.7
|Average low °F (°C)||18.4
|Record low °F (°C)||−16
|Average precipitation inches (mm)||4.24
|Average snowfall inches (cm)||16.0
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||132.1||146.7||174.0||185.6||220.2||231.8||258.1||242.5||204.1||182.1||133.3||125.9||2,236.4|
|Percent possible sunshine||46.3||50.9||48.5||47.9||50.4||52.7||58.0||58.7||56.7||55.1||47.0||45.9||51.5|
|Source: Blue Hill Observatory & Science Center|
Places adjacent to Braintree, Massachusetts
Municipalities and communities of Norfolk County, Massachusetts, United States
|Cities and towns|
|Cities and towns|
|Cities and towns|
Town of Braintree
|Points of Interest|