Easton, Massachusetts

Easton is a town in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 23,112 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Greater Boston area, but is also part of the 6-county definition of the Providence MSA.

Easton is governed by an elected Board of Selectmen. Open Town Meeting acts as the legislative branch of the town. The Selectman choose a Town Administrator to run the day-to-day operations of the town.

Easton, Massachusetts
Oakes Ames Memorial Hall with Ames Free Library in background.
Oakes Ames Memorial Hall with Ames Free Library in background.
Official seal of Easton, Massachusetts

Location in Bristol County in Massachusetts
Location in Bristol County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°01′28″N 71°07′45″W / 42.02444°N 71.12917°WCoordinates: 42°01′28″N 71°07′45″W / 42.02444°N 71.12917°W
CountryUnited States
 • TypeOpen town meeting
 • Total29.2 sq mi (75.5 km2)
 • Land28.4 sq mi (73.7 km2)
 • Water0.7 sq mi (1.9 km2)
112 ft (34 m)
 • Total23,112
 • Density791.5/sq mi (313.6/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s)508 / 774
FIPS code25-20100
GNIS feature ID0619433
Civil War Memorial in Easton, Massachusetts
Civil War memorial at the intersection of Depot and Center Streets.


View from The Rockery showing Oakes Ames Memorial hall (left), Ames Free Library (center), and 66 Main Street (right)

Easton was first settled in 1694 and was officially incorporated in 1725.[1]

In 1694, the first settler, Clement Briggs, established his home near the Easton Green. In 1711, the Taunton North Purchase area became Norton, and in 1713, the sixty-nine families settled in Easton and hired Elder William Pratt as their first minister. Prior to the settlers' establishment, the area was occupied by Native Americans as a hunting area and a burial ground. During King Philip's War, Metacom, also known as King Philip, used part of Easton as a headquarters for his troops. There was no legal parish in Easton until 1722, when the East Precinct of Norton was recognized. In 1725, the area was incorporated as the Town of Easton; it was so named because it was formerly called the "East End" of the Taunton North Purchase and was shortened by pronunciation to Easton. During the Revolutionary War, General George Washington stayed at the Benjamin Williams Tavern on Bay Road, which is now the second oldest existing house in Easton, while on his way to negotiate for cannonballs at the old Perry Foundry in Taunton.

In 1803, the Ames Shovel Works was established and became nationally known as having provided the shovels which laid the Union Pacific Railroad and opened the west. In 1875, the shovel production of the Ames plant was worth $1.5 million. The most notable of the Ames family were Oakes Ames, a key figure in the Crédit Mobilier of America scandal, and Oliver Ames(R), governor of Massachusetts from 1887–1890.

The Ames family shaped the town's economy, and was responsible for the presence of a number of landmark buildings in the town designed by H. H. Richardson, originator of the Richardsonian Romanesque style and designer of Trinity Church in Boston.

Richardson buildings in Easton include:

Though this school complex was not made by Richardson himself, it was dedicated to him and made in his style:

  • H.H.Richardson/F.L.Olmsted Intermediate School

Although intended to be the town hall, the Oakes Ames Memorial Hall was never accepted by the town and never used for that purpose.

In addition, there is a commercial building at 69 Main Street which designed and build in the nineteenth century by Richardson's office in a Richardsonian style. The Richardson buildings are all located within a compact area designated as the H. H. Richardson Historic District. The area also includes The Rockery, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who also landscaped grounds of Oakes Ames Memorial Hall and the Ames Free Library.

Within a few blocks of the H. H. Richardson Historic District is Unity Church, built by the Ames family in 1875, and designed in the Gothic Revival Style by architect and publisher John Ames Mitchell. It includes an ornate oak frieze including sculptures of twenty-two angels playing music, carved by Johannes Kirchmayer (1860–1930), and two notable stained-glass windows, "Angel of Help," and "Figure of Wisdom," both by John LaFarge (1835–1910). "Figure of Wisdom," completed in 1901, is the largest stained-glass work created by LaFarge.


North Easton, Massachusetts (2674483332)
North Easton in 1891

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 29.2 square miles (76 km2), of which 28.4 square miles (74 km2) is land and 0.7 square miles (1.8 km2) (2.54%) is water. The town, in addition to its own smaller state forest, includes part of Borderland State Park at the northwest corner of town, Hockomock Swamp Wildlife Management Area at the southeast corner of town, and all of Wheaton Farm Conservation Area in the southwest. All of the town's waterways are considered part of the Taunton River Watershed area, which in turn is the eastern section of the Narragansett Bay Watershed area.

Easton forms the northeastern corner of Bristol County, where the county intersects with Plymouth County to the east and Norfolk County to the north.

The localities of Easton include Alger's Corner, Daley Corner, Easton Center, Easton Green, Eastondale, Five Corners, Furnace Village, Goward's Corner, Morris Corner, Morse Corner, North Easton, Pratt's Corner, and South Easton.

Easton is located in eastern Massachusetts. The roughly trapezoidal-shaped town is bordered by Brockton and West Bridgewater to the east, Taunton and Raynham to the south, Norton to either side of its southwest corner, Mansfield to the west, and Sharon and Stoughton to the north.


Historical population

Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]

As of the census[12] of 2000, there were 22,299 people, 7,489 households, and 5,571 families residing in the town. The population density was 784.1 people per square mile (302.7/km²). There were 7,631 housing units at an average density of 268.3 per square mile (103.6/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 91.94% White, 1.59% African American, 0.04% Native American, 1.39% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 4.13% from other races, and 0.91% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.58% of the population.

There were 7,489 households out of which 37.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.3% were married couples living together, 8.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.6% were non-families. 20.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.74 and the average family size was 3.21.

In the town, the population was spread out with 24.4% under the age of 18, 13.1% from 18 to 24, 28.7% from 25 to 44, 24.3% from 45 to 64, and 9.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.1 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $89,144, and the median income for a family was $112,190. Males had a median income of $51,429 versus $35,912 for females. The per capita income for the town was $40,732. About 0.7% of families and 2.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 0.6% of those under age 18 and 6.5% of those age 65 or over.


Public schools

Easton has a public school system. There are three elementary schools serving kindergarten through second grade: Moreau Hall Elementary School at Daley Corner, Parkview Elementary School in North Easton, and Center Elementary School in Easton Center. The two schools serving grades 3-5: Frederick Law Olmsted School and Henry Hobson Richardson School, both located in North Easton's school area, are now considered one school, known as "Richardson-Olmsted."[13] Grades 6 through 8 attend Easton Middle School, and high school students attend Oliver Ames High School.

The high school is Oliver Ames High School, whose athletic teams' mascot is the tiger. The school colors are orange and black. The OA girl's varsity basketball team won the Division II state basketball championship in 2006 and 2010. The Oliver Ames Varsity Baseball team won the Division II State Baseball Championship in June 2007. In November 2007 Oliver Ames girl's varsity soccer team won the Division II state soccer championship. In November 2015 the Oliver Ames boys soccer team won the state championship game. The high school also boasts an impressive music department, complete with a jazz band, marching band, concert band, show choir, concert choir and chamber orchestra. The Oliver Ames Marching Band won the 2008 Division 2 New England championships for USSBA, and placed 5th out of 29 bands competing.

The town is also home to Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School, which serves all the bordering towns (except Taunton and Raynham), plus Foxborough. Students may choose to attend Southeastern or Oliver Ames free of charge.

Private schools

Other than Easton Learning Adventures Preschool, there are currently no private schools located within Easton.

Higher education

Easton is home to Stonehill College, a private, non-profit, coeducational, Roman Catholic, Liberal Arts college.


Easton is served by the following highways that run through the town: Routes 106, 123 and 138. Additionally, the town is served by two major highways which run just outside its border, Route 24 to the east and Interstate 495 to the south.

Easton is the site of two proposed commuter rail stations, North Easton and Easton Village, on the Stoughton Branch option of the MBTA's South Coast Rail project. In March 2011, following the release of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Draft Environmental Impact Report, Gov. Deval Patrick's administration and the MBTA announced this alternative as the best option for achieving all the goals of the project.

Points of interest

Notable people



Frederick Lothrop Ames, Jr. (1876–1921) Son of Frederick Lothrop Ames





Easton is represented by Claire Cronin (D) and Shaunna O'Connell (R) in the Massachusetts House of Representatives.

Easton is represented by Walter Timilty (D) and Michael Brady (D) in the Massachusetts Senate.

Easton is represented by Elizabeth Warren (D) and Ed Markey (D) in the United States Senate.

In the United States Congress Easton is represented by Joseph P. Kennedy III (D).

Local government

Easton is governed by an elected committee of selectmen and a town administrator.

The Board of Selectmen[16]

  • Dottie Fulginiti (Chair)
  • Craig Barger (Vice-Chair)
  • Marc Lamb
  • Thomas Brussard
  • Charles King

National recognition

In July 2009, Easton was named #37 on CNN Money Magazine's Best places for the rich and single list,[17] and #17 on its Top 100 Best Places to Live list, moving up from #28 in July 2007.[18]


  1. ^ "Official Town of Easton Website". Retrieved 2014-07-11.
  2. ^ "Total Population (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010.
  3. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  4. ^ "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.
  5. ^ "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.
  6. ^ "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.
  7. ^ "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.
  8. ^ "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.
  9. ^ "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.
  10. ^ "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.
  11. ^ "1850 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  12. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  13. ^ "Easton school renamed Richardson/Olmsted".
  14. ^ a b Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Marquis Who's Who. 1967.
  15. ^ Hall, Henry (1896). America's Successful Men of Affairs. New York Tribune. p. 511.
  16. ^ "Board of Selectmen". easton.ma.us. Retrieved 2016-09-14.
  17. ^ "Best places for the rich and single". CNN. 2009-07-13. Retrieved 2010-05-01.
  18. ^ "Best Places to Live 2009". CNN. Retrieved 2010-05-01.

External links

Borderland State Park

Borderland State Park is a history and nature preserve with public recreational features located in the towns of Easton and Sharon, Massachusetts. The state park encompasses 1,843 acres (746 ha) surrounding the Ames Mansion, which was built in 1910. The area was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as Borderland Historic District in 1997. It is operated by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, with an appointed advisory council that participates in policy decision-making.

Brennan Williams

Brennan Marcel Williams (born February 5, 1991) is an American professional wrestler and former professional football offensive tackle currently signed to WWE, performing in their developmental territory NXT. He previously wrestled on the independent circuit under the ring name Marcellus Black.Prior to beginning his professional wrestling career, Williams was drafted by the Houston Texans of the National Football League in the third round (89th overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft. He played college football at North Carolina.

Claire D. Cronin

Claire D. Cronin is State Representative in the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Cronin represents the 11th Plymouth district, consisting of Ward 1, Ward 3: Precinct D, Ward 7: Precincts C, and D in Brockton; Precincts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 of Easton. She is an Easton resident and a member of the Democratic Party.

Frederick Lothrop Ames Jr.

Frederick Lothrop Ames Jr. (July 23, 1876–June 19, 1921) was a Massachusetts financier and socialite. He was the great-grandson of Oliver Ames, who established the Ames Shovel Company, grandson of Oliver Ames Jr., and son of Frederick Lothrop Ames.

George V. N. Lothrop

George Van Ness Lothrop (August 8, 1817 – July 12, 1897) was a politician in the U.S. state of Michigan, serving as the seventh Michigan Attorney General from 1848 until 1851.

Joseph Nassise

Joseph Nassise (born 1968) is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling American urban fantasy writer and the author of more than forty novels. His debut novel, Riverwatch, was nominated for both the Bram Stoker Award and the International Horror Guild Award. He is the author of the internationally bestselling Templar Chronicles series, the Jeremiah Hunt Chronicle, the Great Undead War series, as well as several books for Gold Eagle's Rogue Angel line. His work has been translated into German, Russian, Polish Portuguese, Spanish, and Italian. Nassise served as the president of the Horror Writers Association from 2002 to 2005 and a Trustee of the same from 2008 to 2010.

Nassise was born and raised in Easton, Massachusetts. He lives with his wife and four children in Arizona.

Ken MacAfee (wide receiver)

Kenneth Adams MacAfee, Sr. (August 31, 1929 – July 4, 2007) was an American football tight end in the National Football League for the New York Giants, the Philadelphia Eagles, and the Washington Redskins. He played college football at the University of Alabama. He is the father of College Football Hall of Fame tight end Ken MacAfee.

Massachusetts Route 106

Route 106 is a west–east highway in southeastern Massachusetts, United States.

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.

North Easton Historic District

The North Easton Historic District is a historic district in Easton, Massachusetts encompassing a cohesive village area developed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, primarily through the activities of the locally important Ames family. The district was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. In 1987, a portion of the district was designated a National Historic Landmark District, known as the H. H. Richardson Historic District of North Easton, which includes several buildings designed for the Ameses by architect H. H. Richardson.

North Easton station

North Easton station is a former railroad station designed by noted American architect H. H. Richardson. It is located just off Oliver Street in North Easton, Massachusetts, and currently houses the Easton Historical Society. The station was built in 1881 and served commuter trains until 1958. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972 as Old Colony Railroad Station. In 1987, it also became part of the H. H. Richardson Historic District of North Easton, a National Historic Landmark District. The proposed Phase 2 of South Coast Rail would return commuter rail service to the location in 2030 as Easton Village station.

North Easton station (MBTA)

North Easton is a proposed railroad station on the MBTA Commuter Rail's Providence/Stoughton Line located in North Easton, Massachusetts and Stoughton, Massachusetts. It is proposed to built as part of the state's effort to extend rail service to Fall River and New Bedford. It would be located well to the north of the old station in North Easton, itself to become Easton Village station one stop southwards on the new line to New Bedford and Fall River.

Oakes Ames

Oakes Ames (January 10, 1804 – May 8, 1873) was an American manufacturer, capitalist, and member of the United States House of Representatives from Massachusetts. As a congressman, he is credited by many historians as being the single most important influence in the building of the Union Pacific portion of the transcontinental railroad. He is also noted for the subsequent scandal that alleged the improper sale of stock of the railroad's construction company.

Oakes Ames (botanist)

Oakes Ames (; September 26, 1874 – April 28, 1950) was an American biologist specializing in orchids. His estate is now the Borderland State Park in Massachusetts.

Oliver Ames (governor)

Oliver Ames (February 4, 1831 – October 22, 1895) was an American businessman, financier and politician from Massachusetts. He was the son of Oakes Ames (1804–1873), a railroad baron behind the construction of the Union Pacific Railroad (UP) who was notably censured in the Credit Mobilier scandal for actions taken while a United States Congressman. Ames was executor of his father's estate, and took over many of his business interests. A Republican, he served as the 35th Governor of Massachusetts (1887–1890). He was a major philanthropist, especially in his hometown of Easton, which is graced by a number of architecturally significant works by H.H. Richardson as a result of his influence.

Oliver Ames Jr.

Oliver Ames Jr. (November 5, 1807 – March 9, 1877) was president of Union Pacific Railroad when the railroad met the Central Pacific Railroad in Utah for the completion of the First Transcontinental Railroad in North America.

Oliver Ames Sr.

Oliver Ames Sr., or "Old Oliver", (April 11, 1779 – September 11, 1863) was the family patriarch of the Ames family of Easton, Massachusetts. He established the family shovel business, which over generations grew to become one of the largest family fortunes in New England.

Stonehill Skyhawks

The Stonehill Skyhawks are the intercollegiate athletic teams that represent Stonehill College, located in Easton, Massachusetts, in NCAA sporting competitions. All Skyhawk athletic teams compete at the Division II level and are members of the Northeast-10 Conference. Stonehill has been a member of the NE-10 since 1980.


WSHL-FM (91.3 FM) is a non-commercial, educational radio station broadcasting an alternative music format. Licensed to Easton, Massachusetts, United States, the station serves the Greater Brockton-Easton area of Massachusetts, 24/7 in Stereo. The station is owned by Stonehill College, Inc. and has been operating since January 1974.

WSHL-FM studios and offices are located on the 1st floor of the Roche Dining Commons at Stonehill College. The transmitter and antenna are located at the College Center Building, also on the campus of Stonehill College in North Easton, Massachusetts.

Currently there are 12 members on the WSHL-FM executive board:

General Manager: Matt Grant

Programming Director: Caroline Decker

Music Director: Siobhan McAlister

Associate Music Director: Nic Sangiovanni

Associate Music Director: Shaunna Barry

Technical Director: Matt Pini

Underwriting Director: Sarah McCusker

Promotions Director: Amanda Byrne

News Director: Dylan Turner

Sports Director: Alex Patturelli

Treasurer: Caroline DeckerPeter Q. George is the Chief Engineer for the station.

Professor Geoffrey Lantos is the faculty adviser for WSHL-FM.

Municipalities and communities of Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States
Ghost town

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