Hanson, Massachusetts

Hanson is a town in Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States and is one of the inland towns of the South Shore. The population was 10,209 at the 2010 census.[1]

Hanson, Massachusetts
Wampatuck Pond, view from beside the Hanson Town Hall
Wampatuck Pond, view from beside the Hanson Town Hall
Official seal of Hanson, Massachusetts

Cranberry City
Location in Plymouth County in Massachusetts
Location in Plymouth County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°04′30″N 70°52′50″W / 42.07500°N 70.88056°WCoordinates: 42°04′30″N 70°52′50″W / 42.07500°N 70.88056°W
CountryUnited States
 • TypeOpen town meeting
 • Total15.7 sq mi (40.6 km2)
 • Land15.0 sq mi (38.9 km2)
 • Water0.7 sq mi (1.7 km2)
90 ft (27 m)
 • Total10,209
 • Density650/sq mi (250/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s)339 / 781
FIPS code25-28495
GNIS feature ID0619468


Hanson was first settled in 1632 as the western parish of Pembroke. The town was officially incorporated in 1820, and was named for Maryland newspaper publisher of the Federal Republican Newspaper and U.S. Senator Alexander Contee Hanson. Hanson was a champion of Free Speech and Freedom of the press, and he was severely beaten and his newspaper offices were attacked and destroyed by an angry mob after he published an article that was critical of the Administration shortly after the outbreak of the War of 1812. The town's early industry revolved around farming, as well as bog iron and quarrying. Mills also popped up along the rivers during the nineteenth century. Today the town is mostly residential, with some farming and cranberry farming. Ocean Spray was first started by several bogs in Hanson,[2] and remained headquartered in Hanson before moving to Plymouth in the 1970s. Hanson was home to the Cranberry Specialty Hospital which opened in 1919 as the Plymouth County Hospital for Tuberculosis and closed in 1992.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 15.7 square miles (40.6 km2), of which 15.0 square miles (38.9 km2) is land and 0.66 square miles (1.7 km2), or 4.21%, is water. It is the 250th largest town in the Commonwealth, over seven square miles smaller than the average. Hanson is considered one of the inland towns of Massachusetts's South Shore, and is bordered by Rockland and Hanover to the north, Pembroke to the east, Halifax to the south, East Bridgewater to the west, and Whitman to the northwest. Hanson is located approximately 9 miles (14 km) east of Brockton, 13 miles (21 km) south of Quincy, and 18 miles (29 km) south-southeast of Boston.

Hanson, like many towns in central Plymouth County, is dominated by lakes, rivers and swamps. The largest ponds include Oldham Pond along the Pembroke town line, Indian Head Pond (the source of Indian Head Brook) just south of Oldham Pond, Maquan Pond, located east of the center of the town, and Wampatuck Pond, located in the center of the town. In addition to Indian Head Brook, the town has several other brooks and rivers, including the Shumatuscacant River and Poor Meadow Brook to the west, and White Oak Brook to the south. To the north of town lies the Little Cedar Swamp, along Indian Head Brook. There is a small town forest and two camps, Rainbow Camp and Camp Kiwanee, within the town as well. Burrage Pond Wildlife Management Area lies mainly in the section of town called Burrage or South Hanson. About half of the 1,625 acres (7 km2) are in Hanson, the other half in Halifax.


  • South Hanson: Formerly the center of town during the industrial era. South Hanson follows Massachusetts Route 27 from the border of Pembroke to Tri-Town (where East Bridgewater, Whitman, and Hanson all intersect). South Hanson was formerly home to the Plymouth County Hospital, a tuberculosis sanatorium, as well as the original Ocean Spray Cranberry Co. facility. The historic and now abandoned South Hanson train station building sits adjacent to the modern MBTA Hanson station. Much of the main one-mile stretch of the South Hanson center suffers from urban decay and deindustrialization given its large number of run down buildings in a once prosperous area, though revival attempts have seen some small business open up in the historic buildings.[3]
  • Monponsett: . On the southern border with Halifax and has its own post office and zip code (02350). Monponsett is named for the Monponsett Twin Lakes which lie along much of the Hanson/Halifax border.
  • Burrage: In South Hanson and named for Albert Burrage, one of the town's most prominent industrialists. He formed the Atlantic Dyestuff Company which had its first factory where present-day Hawks Avenue is located. Litecontrol, now of Plympton, had used the historic industrial complex before relocating. The historic factory was demolished in 2016.[4] Burrage was also previously home to a library and a hotel, both of which closed in the early 1900s. Burrage includes portions of Pleasant Street, South Street and Reed Street.
  • Brentwood: The north-eastern region of Hanson, including Brook Street, State State, Gorwin Drive, and their sides streets.


Historical population
* = population estimate.
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.[5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14]

As of the census[15] of 2000, there were 9,495 people, 3,123 households, and 2,545 families residing in the town. The population density was 632.5 people per square mile (244.2/km²). There were 3,178 housing units at an average density of 211.7 per square mile (81.7/km²).

There were 3,123 households out of which 40.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 69.6% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 18.5% were non-families. 14.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.03 and the average family size was 3.38.

In the town, the population was spread out with 28.2% under the age of 18, 6.9% from 18 to 24, 31.1% from 25 to 44, 25.1% from 45 to 64, and 8.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $62,687, and the median income for a family was $68,560. Males had a median income of $46,508 versus $31,337 for females. The per capita income for the town was $23,727. About 2.8% of families and 3.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.3% of those under age 18 and 11.6% of those age 65 or over.

Statistically, Hanson is the 180th most populous and the 154th most densely populated town in Massachusetts. It is just below the median in terms of population, and below the average but above the median in terms of density.


Hanson Town Hall
Hanson Town Hall

On the national level, Hanson is a community of the Ninth congressional district, currently represented by Bill Keating. The state's senior (Class I) member of the United States Senate, is Elizabeth Warren. The junior (Class II) senator, is Ed Markey.

On the state level, Hanson is represented in the Massachusetts House of Representatives as a part of the Sixth Plymouth district, which includes the towns of Duxbury, Pembroke and portions of Halifax. The town is represented in the Massachusetts Senate as a part of the Second Plymouth and Bristol district, which includes Brockton, Halifax, Hanover, Whitman and portions of East Bridgewater and Easton.[16] The town is patrolled by the First (Norwell) Barracks of Troop D of the Massachusetts State Police.[17]

Hanson is governed by the open town meeting form of government and is led by current Town Administrator Michael McCue[18] and a five-member Board of Selectmen. The town hall is located on the shore of Wampatuck Pond, at the town center. In the same area are the Fire Department headquarters and the Hanson Public Library, which is a member of the SAILS Library Network. The Hanson Police Department headquarters, built in 2007, is located on Main Street (Rte. 27). There is a branch firehouse along Route 27 near the train station, and the town's post office is located near the intersection of Routes 27 and 58. Town Meetings are held at the Hanson Middle School Auditorium.


Hanson shares a Pre-K through 12 School District (Whitman-Hanson Regional School District) with neighboring Whitman and the yearly operating assessments to both Towns are determined on the basis of Student Population. The town of Hanson owns the Hanson Middle School, and two elementary schools, Indian Head and Maquan and leases them to the Whitman Hanson Regional School District which is responsible for keeping the Buildings in Good Repair. Maquan Elementary School closed recently, and Indian Head Elementary serves students from kindergarten through fourth grades. Hanson Middle School also serves students in grades five through eight. The town sends their students to Whitman-Hanson Regional High School, which is shared with the neighboring town of Whitman. The school was recently rebuilt through part of a $50 million project. It is located behind the previous, (which has been torn down and replaced with new athletic fields including a synthetic turf football field) along Route 27 on the town line. Whitman-Hanson's teams are known as the Panthers, and their colors are red and black. Their chief rival is nearby Abington High, whom they play in the annual Thanksgiving Day football game.

In addition to Whitman-Hanson, students may choose to attend South Shore Vocational Technical High School in Hanover free of charge.

The nearest colleges to Hanson are Massasoit Community College in Brockton, Bridgewater State College in Bridgewater, and Quincy College in Quincy.


There are no freeways in Hanson; it is situated equidistantly between Routes 3 and 24. The main state routes through town are Route 14 and Route 58, which intersect and run coextensively for a short stretch in the middle of town. Route 27 also passes through the town, following a portion of the Whitman and East Bridgewater borders before crossing the southern section of town.

The town lies along the Kingston-Plymouth line of the MBTA's commuter rail service, with a stop along Route 27. There is a small airport, Cranland Airport, which serves only small aircraft. The nearest national and international air service is at Logan International Airport in Boston. The Town also owns and operates one of the most popular, and picturesque wedding and rental facilities on the South Shore, the Needles lodge at Camp Kiwanee, which overlooks Maquan Pond.

Notable people


  1. ^ 2010 Census Data - Hanson, MA
  2. ^ USGenWeb - Hanson, MA History
  3. ^ Steele, Christine. "Revival under way on South Hanson's Main Street". Wicked Local. Retrieved 2017-02-15.
  4. ^ Conservation Comm., Hanson. "Conservation Minutes, February 10, 2015" (PDF).
  5. ^ "Total Population (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010.
  6. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  7. ^ "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.
  8. ^ "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.
  9. ^ "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.
  10. ^ "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.
  11. ^ "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.
  12. ^ "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.
  13. ^ "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.
  14. ^ "1850 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  15. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  16. ^ Index of Legislative Representation by City and Town, from Mass.gov
  17. ^ Station D-1, SP Norwell
  18. ^ "Town Administrator | Town of Hanson MA". www.hanson-ma.gov. Retrieved 2017-02-15.
  19. ^ "Elfcor Bed And Breakfast/Fred'S Art Studio, Hanson, MA - InnSite.com". www.innsite.com. Retrieved 2017-02-15.
  20. ^ http://www.musicmediasolutions.com. Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links

This newspaper page is no longer dedicated to Hanson exclusively.

Albert Hall (athlete)

Albert William "Al" Hall (August 2, 1934 – October 9, 2008) was an American hammer throw champion, who competed in the Olympics on four occasions.

Hall grew up on the family's farm in Hanson, Massachusetts, where he built up his physique using a set of weights he had constructed from concrete cylinders.Hall attended Whitman High School (now part of Whitman-Hanson Regional High School), where he was a running back on the school's football team and became an active participant on the track team during his senior year. Hall graduated from the school in 1952.He appeared on the August 14th, 1960 broadcast of What's My Line where the guests were associated with the Olympics, including Jesse Owens as the "mystery guest".

Cranland Airport

Cranland Airport, (ICAO: K28M, FAA LID: 28M) in Hanson, Massachusetts is a public use airport owned by Cranland Inc. It has one runway, averages 102 flights per week, and has approximately 28 aircraft based on its field.

Benjamin Atwood owned and operated Cranland until his death on July 13, 1967. Atwood died in an airplane crash close to Little Sandy in Pembroke, MA. Atwood also owned Cranberry Sprayers Inc. located at Cranland. Atwood was one of the first jet pilots in the US Air Force.

Dennis K. Burke was the sole owner of the airport until July 26, 2011, he sold the airport to Peter T. Oakley, who is also the Airport Manager.

One historic aircraft, a Grumman Widgeon formerly owned by singer Jimmy Buffett (then registered as N1471N), is housed in the main hangar. It is now owned by Burke, who re-registered it as N3N. This Widgeon was rebuilt by former airport manager Michael Maurano. Cranland Airport is also the home of Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 279 http://www.eaa279.org/ . The club hosts a fly-In breakfast every third Sunday each month between April and October 8–11 am and it is open to the public. Dozens of regional based aircraft from nearby Plymouth, Marshfield, And Mansfield municipal airports fly into Cranland where breakfast is served on airport grounds. Aircraft usually include local Cessnas, piper cubs, and other General Aviation icons. some of the most notable regularly appearing aircraft include a rare radial engine powered variant of the Fairchild F.22, a vintage 1940 Cessna 140, a Vietnam War era Cessna L-19 Bird-Dog observation airplane, a World War II era De Havilland Chipmunk trainer, a Pits S-2 bi-plane, a Boeing PT-17 Stearman bi-plane fitted with a 450 hp engine, and a restored Beechcraft C-45 Expeditor (a former military variant of the Beech 18). The fly-in normally includes flyovers and demonstrations of the present aircraft later, in the June 2012 fly-in an Army National Guard UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter landed at the airport for display being the first time that the Cranland fly-in had any military involvement.

Dana Colley

Dana Colley (born October 17, 1961 in Portland, Maine) is an American musician, best known as the baritone and tenor saxophonist in the alternative rock band Morphine.

Daniel K. Webster

Daniel K. Webster (born April 2, 1964 in Stoughton, Massachusetts) is an American attorney and politician who represented the 6th Plymouth District in the Massachusetts House of Representatives from 2003 to 2013. Webster is a graduate of Colby College in Maine and Suffolk University Law School in Boston.

District 7 School (Hanson, Massachusetts)

The District 7 School is a historic one-room schoolhouse at 565 Main Street in Hanson, Massachusetts. The single-story wood frame structure was built in 1845, and is the town's oldest surviving schoolhouse. It has two entry doors to anterooms which lead to the main schoolroom. The building was enlarged, apparently in 1882, when it was also moved across the street from its original location. It was moved again in 1939, to a position adjacent to the Thomas Elementary School, where it was used as a "portable" classroom. Finally, in 1963 it was moved to its present location, and has served since as a museum and meeting space operated by the local historical society.The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

Francis L. Marini

Francis L. Marini is a Massachusetts politician and jurist who served as a judge in the Taunton District Court. He retired from Hingham District Court in 2015

An attorney and town politician in Hanson, Massachusetts, Marini was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1994. He served as Minority Whip from 1997 to 1999 and was the House Minority leader from 1999 to 2002.

Marini resigned from the House on November 19, 2002 in order to become a judge in the Taunton District Court.

Indian Head Pond (Massachusetts)

Indian Head Pond is a 121-acre (0.49 km2) pond in Hanson, Massachusetts. The pond is a tributary to Furnace Pond, a public water supply, and is the headwaters to Indian Head Brook.

Indian Head River

The Indian Head River rises on the southern boundary of Hanover, Massachusetts and northern boundary line of Hanson, Massachusetts at the intersection of tributaries from Drinkwater River in Hanover and Indian Head Brook in Hanson. The river then flows east along the Hanover-Pembroke border. The river, 3.7 miles (6.0 km) long, is a tributary of the North River, which flows into Massachusetts Bay. The Indian Head River was an important fishing and water pathway for the Massachuset Indian village of Mattakeeset which was located around the Pembroke Ponds.

John Delaney (baseball)

John Delaney (born December 30, 1985) is an American college baseball coach who was named Quinnipiac's head coach prior to the start of the 2015 season. A Quinnipiac alumnus, Delaney played minor league baseball in the Milwaukee Brewers system before starting his coaching career.

Maquan Pond

Maquan Pond is a 48-acre (190,000 m2) pond in Hanson, Massachusetts. Its average depth is 12 feet (3.7 m) and its maximum depth is 18 feet (5.5 m). The pond is a tributary to Furnace Pond, a public water supply. There has been much development along the shore. The town right-of-way is on the northern shore of the pond off Maquan Street (Route 14). The water is acidic, so fishing is poor except for pickerel, small yellow perch and pumpkinseeds.

Camp Kiwanee, a former Camp Fire camp, is located on the eastern shore of the pond.

Massachusetts Route 14

Route 14 is an 18.5-mile highway in southeastern Massachusetts. It runs from Route 27 in Brockton east to Route 3A in Duxbury, near the coastline.

Massachusetts Route 3 (Pilgrims Highway) has an interchange with Route 14, at Exit 11 in Duxbury.

Massachusetts Route 27

Route 27 is a south–north highway in eastern Massachusetts that runs for 73.4 miles.

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.

Nick Cafardo

Nicholas D. Cafardo (May 8, 1956 – February 21, 2019) was an American sportswriter and sports author. A longtime columnist and beat reporter for The Boston Globe, he primarily covered the Boston Red Sox.

Oldham Pond (Massachusetts)

Oldham Pond is a 232-acre (0.94 km2) pond in Pembroke and Hanson, Massachusetts. The pond is a tributary to Furnace Pond. There are three islands located in the middle of the pond, the largest of which is named Monument Island. On the Pembroke side of the pond, Oldham Village lies along the eastern shore, and Oldham Pines lies along the northeastern shore. Camp Pembroke, an all-girls Jewish summer camp, is located on this pond. The first camp out of Troop 1 Hanover, one of the oldest troops in Massachusetts, was held here in 1912.

Tiffany Scott

Tiffany Scott (born May 1, 1977) is an American figure skater.

Scott was born in Hanson, Massachusetts. She skated with Philip Dulebohn until 2005. They competed at the 2002 Olympic Games and won the pairs title at the 2003 U.S. Championships. In 2005, Dulebohn retired from competition and Scott teamed up with Rusty Fein. Dulebohn was one of the pair's coaches during their brief partnership. Scott and Fein finished 4th at their first and only U.S. Figure Skating Championships in 2006.

Away from the ice, Scott married Brian Pryor in 2005. In May 2006, Scott announced her retirement from competitive skating. In March 2012, the couple had a son.

In the 2007 film "Blades of Glory", Scott served as Amy Poehler's stunt double.

Wampatuck Pond

Wampatuck Pond is a 64-acre (260,000 m2) pond in Hanson, Massachusetts. Indian Head Brook both flows in and out of the pond. Along the northern shore of the pond are the Routes 14 and 58 concurrency, Hanson's Town Hall, and a small park. Access to the pond includes a concrete ramp managed by the Town of Hanson suitable for three trailers and six cars. The water quality is impaired due to noxious aquatic plants.

Whitman-Hanson Regional High School

Whitman-Hanson Regional High School is a public high school located in Whitman, Massachusetts. The school serves students in grades 9-12 from the towns of Whitman, Massachusetts and Hanson, Massachusetts. It is part of the Whitman-Hanson Regional School District. The schools colors are Black & Red and their mascot is the Panther.

Municipalities and communities of Plymouth County, Massachusetts, United States
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