Cohasset, Massachusetts

Cohasset is a town in Norfolk County, Massachusetts, United States. As of the 2010 census the population was 7,542,[2] and in 2017 the estimated population was 8,516.[1]

Cohasset, Massachusetts
Cohasset Town Common
Cohasset Town Common
Official seal of Cohasset, Massachusetts

Location in Norfolk County in Massachusetts
Location in Norfolk County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°14′30″N 70°48′15″W / 42.24167°N 70.80417°WCoordinates: 42°14′30″N 70°48′15″W / 42.24167°N 70.80417°W
CountryUnited States
 • TypeOpen town meeting
 • Total31.44 sq mi (81.42 km2)
 • Land9.79 sq mi (25.35 km2)
 • Water21.64 sq mi (56.06 km2)
50 ft (15 m)
 • Total7,542
 • Estimate 
 • Density870/sq mi (335.9/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP Code
Area code(s)339/781
FIPS code25-14640
GNIS feature ID0618317


Discovery of cohasset
A historic marker on the European discovery of Cohasset

Cohasset was first seen by Europeans in 1614, when Captain John Smith explored the coast of New England. The area was first settled in 1670 and became a town separate from Hingham in 1770.[3] Previously, what is today the town of Cohasset was known as Hingham's Second Parish.[4] The town's name came from the Algonquian word "Conahasset", meaning "long rocky place". Much of the land was originally granted to the "Conahasset Partners".

Cushing-Nichols House Cohasset Massachusetts
Cushing-Nichols House, Cohasset

At a special town meeting of January 1670, the shares in the new town were apportioned and divided among the new proprietors, many of whom were large Hingham landowners. The largest number of shares—35—went to Hingham Town Clerk Daniel Cushing, with the second largest (25) to Reverend Peter Hobart, Hingham's minister. Others receiving large grants were: Capt. Joshua Hobart, Peter Hobart's brother (18 shares); Lieut. John Smith (15 shares); Ensign John Thaxter (16½ shares); and deacon John Leavitt (with 14½ shares).[5] The layout of the town was distinctive. Many lots were laid out in long narrow strips, facilitating more lots with road frontage, and avoiding back lots.

Cohasset was originally part of Suffolk County, and when the southern part of the county was set off as Norfolk County in 1793, it included the towns of Cohasset, Hingham and Hull. In 1803 Hull and Hingham opted out of Norfolk County and became part of Plymouth County, leaving Cohasset as an exclave of Norfolk County.[6]


Surf, Cohasset Maurice Prendergast.jpeg
Surf, Cohasset, Maurice Prendergast, ca. 1900

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 31.4 square miles (81.4 km2), of which 9.8 square miles (25.4 km2) are land and 21.7 square miles (56.1 km2), or 68.86%, are water.[7] It is bordered on the west by Hingham, on the northwest by Hull, on the north and northeast by Massachusetts Bay and on the east and south by Scituate. Cohasset is approximately 12 miles (19 km) east of Braintree and 20 miles (32 km) by road southeast of Boston.

Cohasset is located on the "corner" of the South Shore, where greater Boston Harbor ends and Massachusetts Bay begins. The shore is rocky, with many small ledges and rocks lying offshore. Cohasset Cove and The Gulf provide a long portion of the border with Scituate, while Straits Pond divides Cohasset from neighboring Hull. Near the center of the coast lies Little Harbor, a large inlet divided from the ocean by Beach Island. Several other brooks and rivers run through the town. A large portion of the southwestern part of town is occupied by Wompatuck State Park (formerly the Hingham Naval Ammunition Depot Annex), and the Whitney & Thayer Woods Reservation. There is also a bird sanctuary, as well as a large park (Wheelwright Park) near Little Harbor. There are three beaches along the bay, and the Cohasset Yacht Club, Cohasset Sailing Club and a public boat launch in Cohasset Harbor.


The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Cohasset has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[8]

January is the coldest month of the year with an average low temperature of 20 °F and average high of 37 °F. July is the warmest month of the year with an average low temperature of 62 °F and average high of 81 °F. Average monthly precipitation falls between 3.47" and 4.80" depending on the time of year. Additionally, Cohasset averages 14.2" of snow in its snowiest month (February) and 48.3" for the year. The all-time record low and high temperatures are -13 °F (1961) and 100 °F (2002), respectively.[9]


Cohasset MA Town Hall
Cohasset Town Hall

On the national level, Cohasset is a part of Massachusetts's 8th congressional district, and is currently represented by Stephen Lynch. The senior (Class II) Senator, is Elizabeth Warren. The (Class I) member of the United States Senate is Edward Markey.

On the state level, Cohasset is represented in the Massachusetts House of Representatives by Joan Meschino as a part of the Third Plymouth district, which includes Hingham, Hull and Scituate. The town is represented in the Massachusetts Senate by Patrick O'Connor as a part of the Plymouth and Norfolk district, which includes the towns of Duxbury, Hingham, Hull, Marshfield, Norwell, Scituate and Weymouth.[10] The town is patrolled on a secondary basis by the First (Norwell) Barracks of Troop D of the Massachusetts State Police.[11]

Cohasset is governed on the local level by the open town meeting form of government, and is led by a town manager and a five-member board of selectmen. The current Town Manager is Christopher Senior. Selectmen are elected officials and serve three-year terms led by a chairman in a rotating one-year term. The current Board of Selectmen consists of Kevin McCarthy, Chair, Paul Schubert, Vice-Chair, and Diane Kennedy, Steve Gaumer, and Jack Keniley. The town operates its own police and fire departments, both of which are headquartered near the town center. Emergency services are also provided by the town, with patients taken to the South Shore Hospital in Weymouth. The town's post office is also nearby, just off of the town common. The town's Paul Pratt Memorial Library is located just west of the town center, in what was once a school adjacent to the original library.

Cohasset Schools are represented by and headed by the Cohasset School Committee. Members of the Cohasset School Committee are Jeanne Astino(Chairman), Katie Dugan(Vice-Chairman), Ellen Maher, Barbara Stefan and Amanda Zani.

Voter Registration and Party Enrollment as of October 15, 2008[12]
Party Number of Voters Percentage
Democratic 1,199 22.29%
Republican 1,197 22.25%
Unaffiliated 2,972 55.24%
Minor Parties 12 0.22%
Total 5,380 100%


Historical population
* = population estimate.
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.[13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21][22]
First Parish, Cohasset MA
First Parish Meeting House, a Unitarian Universalist congregation originally built ca. 1750.[4]

As of the census of 2010, there were 7,542 people, 2,722 households, and 2,024 families residing in the town. The population density was 770.4 people per square mile (297.5/km²). There were 2,980 housing units, of which 258, or 8.7%, were vacant. The racial makeup of the town was 97.3% White, 0.3% African American, 0.1% Native American, 1.0% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.2% some other race, and 1.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.3% of the population.[23]

Of the 2,722 households in the town, 39.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.0% were headed by married couples living together, 7.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.6% were non-families. 22.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.8% were someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.74, and the average family size was 3.27.[23]

29.4% of the town's population were under the age of 18, 4.3% were from 18 to 24, 18.6% were from 25 to 44, 31.6% were from 45 to 64, and 16.0% were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43.6 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.9 males.[23]

For the period 2013-2017, the estimated median annual income for a household in the town was $140,000. The median income for a family was $180,345, and the per capita income was $75,885. Male full-time workers earned an estimated $124,420 per year, while females earned $91,103. About 2.5% of families and 3.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.4% of those under age 18 and 1.6% of those age 65 or over.[24]

During the 2013-2017 period, the median home value was $852,300.[25] 98.3% of the town residents held at least a high school degree, while 73.3% had a bachelor's degree or higher.[26]


Cohasset operates its own school department for the town's approximately 1,500 students. The Osgood Elementary School serves students from pre-kindergarten through second grade. The Deer Hill Elementary School, located adjacent to the Osgood School, serves students from grades 3–5. The town operates a combined Middle/High School, which is located just over Bear Hill from the other two schools. Cohasset's athletics teams are known as the Skippers, and their colors are navy blue and white. They compete in the South Shore League, and their chief rival is Hull High School.

The athletic programs offered to Cohasset High School students include Baseball, Ice Hockey, Basketball, Cross Country, Tennis, a Competitive Debate Team, Football (which won the 2014 Division VI Super Bowl, and made it to the 2013 Division VI Super Bowl, but lost), Soccer, Competitive Swimming, Track and Field, Sailing, Ski Team, Wrestling and Lacrosse.

High school students may also choose to attend South Shore Vocational Technical High School in Hanover free of charge. There are no private schools in Cohasset, but there are several in neighboring Hingham and the towns west of it.


No divided highways run through Cohasset. The longest state route through the town is Route 3A, which curves through the town between Scituate and Hingham. Route 228 runs along the border with Hingham, crossing the Weir River into Hull. The nearest airport to Cohasset is Marshfield Municipal Airport. The nearest national and international air service can be reached at Logan International Airport in Boston. T. F. Green Airport, located outside Providence, Rhode Island, is an alternative to this airport, although it is located further away.

The MBTA Bus system services the bordering town of Hingham. The MBTA's commuter rail Greenbush Line has a Cohasset station off Route 3A, just east of a cemetery.[27]

Notable people


Movies filmed in Cohasset:


  1. ^ a b "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2017 (PEPANNRES): Massachusetts Minor Civil Divisions". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  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 2011-06-26.
  3. ^ History of the Town of Hingham, Massachusetts, Vol. I, Thomas Tracy Bouve et al., Published by the Town, 1893. Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  4. ^ a b "Congregational History". First Parish of Cohasset. December 28, 2009. Archived from the original on July 26, 2011. Retrieved 2010-06-06.
  5. ^ A Narrative History of the Town of Cohasset, Massachusetts, Edwin Victor Bigelow, Published Under the Auspices of the Committee on Town History, Press of Samuel Usher, Boston, Mass., 1898. Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  6. ^ "Information and Historical Data on Cities, Towns and Counties in Massachusetts". Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  7. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (G001): Cohasset town, Norfolk County, Massachusetts". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  8. ^ "Climate Summary for Cohasset, Massachusetts". Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ "Index of Legislative Representation by City and Town, from". Retrieved 2014-02-25.
  11. ^ Station D-1, SP Norwell Archived November 27, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ "Registration and Party Enrollment Statistics as of October 15, 2008" (PDF). Massachusetts Elections Division. Retrieved 2010-05-08.
  13. ^ "Total Population (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010.
  14. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  15. ^ "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.
  16. ^ "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.
  17. ^ "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.
  18. ^ "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.
  19. ^ "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.
  20. ^ "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.
  21. ^ "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.
  22. ^ "1850 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  23. ^ a b c "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (DP-1): Cohasset town, Norfolk County, Massachusetts". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  24. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics: 2013-2017 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP03): Cohasset town, Norfolk County, Massachusetts". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  25. ^ "Selected Housing Characteristics: 2013-2017 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP04): Cohasset town, Norfolk County, Massachusetts". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  26. ^ "Selected Social Characteristics in the United States: 2013-2017 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP02): Cohasset town, Norfolk County, Massachusetts". American Factfinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved December 10, 2018.
  27. ^ Greenbush Line Construction website Archived 2007-03-31 at the Wayback Machine
  28. ^ Strasburg, Jenny (30 July 2008). "Lone Star's Splash". WSJ. Retrieved 29 July 2015.

External links

Aaron River Reservoir

Aaron River Reservoir is a 136-acre (0.55 km2) reservoir mostly in Cohasset, Massachusetts, with small stretches extending into Hingham and Scituate. The outflow of the pond is Aaron River. Most of the reservoir is in the eastern side of Wompatuck State Park. The village of Beechwood lies to the east of the reservoir. The reservoir is a Class A water supply source used as a backup source for the Town of Cohasset. The water quality is impaired due to mercury contamination, although the source of the mercury is unknown.

Barrel Rock

Barrel Rock is a small barren rock within the edge of Cohasset Harbor in Cohasset, Massachusetts, USA. The rock is north of Sutton Rocks, northwest of Quarry Point, south of Chittenden Rock, and east of Brush Island. It is located at 42°15′32″N 70°47′6″W

Big Quamino Rock (Massachusetts)

Big Quamino Rock is a barren, uninhabited island located in Cohasset Harbor in Cohasset, Massachusetts.

Cohasset station

Cohasset is an MBTA Commuter Rail station in Cohasset, Massachusetts. It serves the Greenbush Line. It is located off Chief Justice Cushing Highway (Route 3A) west of downtown Cohasset. The station was opened with the line on October 31, 2007, providing the first rail service to Cohasset since 1959. Cohasset station is fully accessible.

Dominic Campedelli

Dominic Joseph "Dom" Campedelli (born April 3, 1964) is a retired American professional ice hockey defenceman who played 2 games in the National Hockey League for the Montreal Canadiens.

Dudley Dean

Dudley Stuart Dean (April 19, 1871 – September 25, 1950) was an All-American football quarterback for Harvard University. He played quarterback for Harvard from 1888-1890 and was selected as an All-American in 1890. Dean also fought with the Rough Riders at the Battle of San Juan Hill during the Spanish–American War.

Greenbush Line

The Greenbush Line is a branch of the MBTA Commuter Rail system which serves the South Shore region of Massachusetts. The 27.6-mile (44.4 km) line (which shares 10 miles of trackage with the Old Colony Lines) runs from downtown Boston, Massachusetts through the towns of Quincy, Weymouth, Hingham, Cohasset, and Scituate to the Greenbush neighbourhood in southern Scituate. There are ten stations along the line: South Station, JFK/UMass, Quincy Center, Weymouth Landing/East Braintree, East Weymouth, West Hingham, Nantasket Junction, Cohasset, North Scituate, and Greenbush.

Modern passenger service on the Greenbush Line began on October 31, 2007. This service restoration, put in place as environmental mitigation for the Big Dig project, was the first passenger service on the line since 1959.

Joshua Bates (educator)

Joshua Bates (March 20, 1776 – January 14, 1854) was an American educator and clergyman. He was the third president of Middlebury College.

Born in Cohasset, Massachusetts, he was the son of Zealous and Abigail Bates. Bates graduated from Harvard College in 1800. He became a special student in divinity at Phillips Academy, serving as well as an instructor at Phillips Andover Academy. From 1818 to 1839, Bates was president of Middlebury College. During his tenure, Bates helped to stabilize the struggling institution and oversaw the construction of the Old Chapel, an icon of the college that is on the National Register of Historic Places. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1834. He was Chaplain of the United States House of Representatives for the twenty–sixth Congress. In 1843 he became minister at Dudley, Massachusetts where he remained until his death, aged 77.His family still lives on today, all over Massachusetts.

Kate Bosworth

Katherine Ann Bosworth (born January 2, 1983) is an American actress and model. Following minor roles in the films The Horse Whisperer (1998) and Remember the Titans (2000), she rose to prominence with her role as a teenage surfer in the box-office hit Blue Crush (2002).

She also had roles in independent films, playing Dawn Schiller in the true crime film Wonderland (2003) and Sandra Dee in the Bobby Darin biographical drama Beyond the Sea (2004). She portrayed Lois Lane in Superman Returns (2006), and had roles in 21 (2008), Straw Dogs (2011), And While We Were Here (2012), and Still Alice (2014). In 2016, she starred in the horror film Before I Wake.

Levi B. Gaylord

Levi B. Gaylord (September 23, 1840 – December 6, 1900) was an American soldier who fought in the American Civil War. Gaylord received his country's highest award for bravery during combat, the Medal of Honor. Gaylord's medal was won for his actions during the Battle of Fort Stedman in Petersburg, Virginia on March 25, 1865. He was honored with the award on June 22, 1896.Gaylord joined the Army from Boston in April 1861, and mustered out with his regiment in July 1865. He was buried in Cohasset, Massachusetts.

Mike O'Connell

Michael Thomas O'Connell (born November 25, 1955) is the Director of Pro Development for the Los Angeles Kings. O'Connell was also a former professional ice hockey player and general manager. He played 860 National Hockey League (NHL) regular season games between 1977 and 1990 and later served as the general manager of the Boston Bruins from 2000 until 2006. He is the son of former National Football League (NFL) quarterback Tommy O'Connell and brother of former World Hockey Association (WHA) player Tim O'Connell.

Nancy Carell

Nancy Ellen Carell (; née Walls; born July 19, 1966) is an American actress, comedian and writer best known for her work on Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show and The Office. In 2016, she co-created the TBS comedy series Angie Tribeca with her husband, Steve Carell.

Pratt Historic Building

The Pratt Historic Building is a historic building at 106 South Main Street in Cohasset, Massachusetts. It was built in 1903 with private donations as the Paul Pratt Memorial Library, to house the town's 7,500-volume collection. The building was expanded in the 1960s and '70s. In 2003, the library moved to a new site on Ripley Road, in the former Joseph Osgood Elementary School.The building now serves as the headquarters and main museum of the Cohasset Historical Society. The Society also operates the Capt. John Wilson House and Bates Ship Chandlery museums in the summer.

The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2006.

Stephen Bowen (astronaut)

Stephen Gerard Bowen (born February 13, 1964) is a United States Navy submariner and a NASA astronaut; he was the second submariner to travel into space. Bowen has been on three spaceflights, all of which were Space Shuttle missions to the International Space Station. His first mission, STS-126, took place in November 2008, and his second was STS-132 in May 2010.

In March 2011, Bowen completed his third spaceflight as a Mission Specialist on STS-133, which was Space Shuttle Discovery's final planned flight. Having flown on both STS-132 and STS-133, Bowen became the first and only astronaut to fly on consecutive shuttle missions. Originally Tim Kopra was scheduled to fly on STS-133, but Kopra had a bicycle injury shortly before the mission, and so he was replaced by Bowen.

Tim O'Connell

Tim O'Connell (born October 26, 1953) is an American former professional ice hockey player. He was drafted by the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League in the eighth round, 124th overall, of the 1973 NHL Entry Draft; however, he never played in that league. He played 16 games in the World Hockey Association with the San Diego Mariners in the 1976–77 season. O'Connell was born in Chicago, Illinois, but grew up in Cohasset, Massachusetts.

A standout hockey player for the University of Vermont Catamounts from 1972–76, O'Connell ranks third all-time in points 234. He is second all-time in goals scored (99), and third in assists (135).

O'Connell's brother Mike played in the NHL with the Chicago Black Hawks, Detroit Red Wings and Boston Bruins. His father, Tommy, played in the National Football League with the Chicago Bears and Cleveland Browns, as well as in the American Football League with the Buffalo Bills.

Walt Sweeney

Walter Francis "Walt" Sweeney (April 18, 1941 – February 2, 2013) was an American football offensive lineman and end, who played college football at Syracuse University, where he made the school's all-century team. He also played in the North-South Game and the College All-Star Game. A first-round draft pick of the San Diego Chargers in 1963, Sweeney helped them win the American Football League championship.

William McKeen

William McKeen is an American author and educator. He is professor and chairman of the Department of Journalism at Boston University.

Wompatuck State Park

Wompatuck State Park is a state-owned, public recreation area of about 3,500 acres (1,400 ha) in size located primarily in the town of Hingham with portions in the neighboring towns of Cohasset, Norwell, and Scituate, Massachusetts, in the United States. In addition to a large campground and an extensive trail system, the park is noted for the free spring water that can be obtained at Mt. Blue Spring, which has been in operation since the mid-19th century. The park is managed by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation and protects forests of the northeastern coastal forests ecoregion.

Zealous Bates Tower

Zealous Bates Tower (January 12, 1819 – March 20, 1900) was an American soldier and civil engineer who served as a general in the Union Army during the American Civil War. He was most noted for constructing the solid defenses of Federal-occupied Nashville, Tennessee, which proved to withstand repeated attacks by the Confederates.

Municipalities and communities of Norfolk County, Massachusetts, United States


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