Stow is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. The town is located 21 miles west of Boston, in the MetroWest region of Massachusetts. The population was 6,590 at the 2010 census. Stow was officially incorporated in 1683 with an area of approximately 40 square miles. Over centuries it gave up land as newer, smaller towns were created, ceding land to Harvard (1732), Shirley (1765), Boxborough (1783), Hudson (1866) and Maynard (1871). Stow now has an area of 18.1 square miles (47 km2). With the exception of factories at Assabet Village and Rock Bottom (later Maynard and Gleasondale), Stow was primarily sparsely settled farm and orchard land until the 1950s.
Town center of Stow
Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
|Incorporated||May 16, 1683|
|• Type||Open town meeting|
|• Total||18.1 sq mi (46.9 km2)|
|• Land||17.6 sq mi (45.6 km2)|
|• Water||0.5 sq mi (1.2 km2)|
|Elevation||231 ft (70 m)|
|• Density||374.4/sq mi (144.6/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−4 (Eastern)|
|Area code(s)||351 / 978|
|GNIS feature ID||0618236|
Stow was officially incorporated in 1683. The earliest Colonial settlers, c. 1660, were Matthew Boon and John Kettell, who settled the land of Tantamous (Jethro), a Native American, whose land was called "Pompocitticut." Boon settled by a pond (later bearing his name: Lake Boon) with a vast tract of land surrounding him. It is said that he traded all this for a single jackknife. A monument bearing his name is located on the plot of land where he formerly resided. John Kettell took up residence in a portion of land in the southwestern corner of Stow. Both families were affected by King Philip's War, an attempt by Native Americans to drive out colonists. Boon and Kettell were killed. Their families had been moved to other locations, and survived. The area that was to become Stow was not resettled by colonists for several years.
The original development of Stow - a mile east of the current center, became known as Lower Village after a meeting hall, and later, churches, were built to the west. The old cemetery on Route 117/62 is officially Lower Village Cemetery. On October 28, 1774, Henry Gardner, a Stow resident, was elected Receiver-General of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, the government of Massachusetts during the American Revolution. After the war, Gardner served as State Treasurer. Gardner's grandson, also Henry Gardner, was the governor of Massachusetts from 1855 to 1857.
As with many colonial era Massachusetts towns, Stow started with a large area and gave up land as newer, smaller towns were created. Stow ceded land to Harvard (1732), Shirley (1765), Boxborough (1783), Hudson (1866) and Maynard (1871). Stow lost 1300 acres (5.3 km2) and close to half its population to the creation of Maynard. Prior to that, what became Maynard was known as "Assabet Village" but was legally still part of the towns of Stow and Sudbury. There were some exploratory town-founding rumblings in 1870, followed by a petition to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, filed January 26, 1871. Both parent towns opposed this effort, but state approval was granted April 19, 1871. The population of the newly formed town - at 1,820 - was larger than either of its parent towns.
In 1942 the U.S. Army seized about one-tenth of the town's land area, from the south side, to created a munitions storage facility. Land owners were evicted. The land remained military property for years. In 2005 it became part of the Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 18.1 square miles (47 km2), of which 17.6 square miles (46 km2) is land and 0.5 square miles (1.3 km2) (2.60%) is water. It is located in eastern/central Massachusetts.
Major bodies of water are Assabet River, Elizabeth Brook, Lake Boon and Delaney Flood Control Project, in the northwest corner. The Assabet River flows through Stow from west to east, spanned by three bridges. Average flow in the river is 200 cubic feet per second. However, in summer months the average drops to under 100 cfs. The flood of March 2010 reached 2,500 cfs. Recent, monthly and annual riverflow data - measured in Maynard - is available from the U.S. Geological Service.
The village of Gleasondale is in both Hudson and Stow. Gleasondale was originally known as Randall's Mills, and then later became known as Rock Bottom. The name "Rock Bottom" came about after a workman struck a solid rock while digging the mill's foundations and a coworker cried out, "You've struck rock bottom!" The name was changed to Gleasondale in 1898 after two of the original mill owners, Mr. Gleason and Mr. Dale. An 1856 map shows Assabet as a village on the eastern border - this became the center of the Town of Maynard in 1871.
|* = population estimate. |
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.
As of the census of 2010, there were 6,590 people, 2,429 households, and 1,902 families residing in the town. The population density was 374.4 people per square mile (144.5/km²). There were 2,526 housing units at an average density of 143.5 per square mile (55.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 93.6% White, 0.7% African American, 0.2% Native American, 3.3% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.9% of the population.
There are 2,429 households, out of which 37.2% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 69.7% were married couples living together, 2.2% had a male householder with no wife present, 6.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.7% were non-families. The householder of 17.4% of all households were living alone and 7.6% was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.71 people and the average family size was 3.10 people.
In the town, the population was spread out with 28.2% under the age of 20, 24.6% from 20 to 44, 34.5% from 45 to 64, and 12.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43.5 years. For every 100 males there were 103.1 females. For every 100 males age 18 and over, there were 106.8 females.
As of 2015, the median income for a household in the town was $137,551, and the median income for a family was $153,763. The per capita income for the town was $51,081. About 2.7% of families and 4.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.7% of those under age 18 and 3.1% of those age 65 or over.
Stow is known for its four golf courses (81 total holes). The best known of these is Stow Acres Country Club (36 holes), the site of the 1995 US Amateur Public Links Championship.
Stow is also well known for its apple orchards (Carver Hill, Derby Ridge Farms, Honey Pot Hill, One Stack Farm and Shelburne Farms), and is a popular weekend destination for families during apple picking season.
A significant portion of the Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge (opened in 2005) is located in Stow.
A military history museum built in 2018 and located on the grounds of the Collings Foundation, with a large collection of tanks and other artifacts from World War I, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam War, Gulf War, Iraq War, September 11, 2001 and the War on Terrorism.
Stow uses the Open Town Meeting form of town government popular in small to mid-sized Massachusetts towns. Anyone may attend a town meeting, but only registered voters may vote. Before the meeting, a warrant is distributed to households in Stow and posted on the town's website. Each article in the warrant is debated and voted on separately. Stow does not require a defined minimum of registered voters to hold a town meeting and vote on town business, i.e., zero quorum. Important budgetary issues approved at a town meeting must be passed by a subsequent ballot vote. Stow's elected officials are a five-member Board of Selectman. Each member is elected to a three-year term. Also filled by election are the School Committee, Housing Authority, Library Trustees and a Moderator to preside over the town meetings. Positions filled by appointment include the Town Administrator and other positions.
On the federal level, Stow is part of Massachusetts's 3rd congressional district, represented by Lori Trahan. The state's senior (Class I) member of the United States Senate is Elizabeth Warren. The junior (Class II) senator is Ed Markey.
Stow is a member of the Nashoba Regional School District, also serving the towns of Lancaster and Bolton. Stow is home to The Center School (PK-5), Hale Middle School (6-8), and Nashoba Regional High School (9-12).
Stow is home to the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy. Future firefighters come here to train to become a firefighter at the minimum age of 18.
Austin Warren (July 4, 1899 – August 20, 1986) was an American literary critic, author, and professor of English.Boston Animation
Boston Animation is a video game developer based in Stow, Massachusetts, United States. The company provides services that include programming, design, writing, localization as well as music and sound effects produced in their in-house studios.Brown–Stow House
The Brown–Stow House or Ichabod Stow House is a historic First Period house at 172 Harvard Road in Stow, Massachusetts. The oldest portion of this two-story timber frame house was probably built early in the 18th century, and consisted of a single "cell" three bays wide, two stories high, with what is now the central chimney in a side bay. During the 18th century it was expanded twice, adding a second cell (giving it the classic five-bay facade) and a rear leanto (giving it the classic saltbox appearance). It has had two modest 20th century additions. The house underwent a major restoration in the 1950s to return it to an 18th-century appearance. The house was probably built by Boaz Brown, who acquired the property in 1699 and died in 1711.The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.Chris Fleming (comedian)
Chris Fleming (born January 29, 1987) is an American comedian best known for his YouTube series Gayle, in which he stars as the titular character of Gayle Waters-Waters.Collings Foundation
The Collings Foundation is a private non-profit educational foundation located in Stow, Massachusetts founded in 1979 by Robert F. Collings and Caroline Collings with a mission dedicated to the preservation and public display of transportation-related history, namely automobile and aviation history. The Collings Foundation is headquartered from a small private airfield in Stow, Massachusetts that includes a small museum that opens for special events and pre-scheduled tour groups. On July 4, 2013 Military Vehicle Technology Foundation founded by Jacques Littlefield, donated their entire collection of military vehicles to the Collings Foundation. The vehicles are now the centerpiece of the new American Heritage Museum, located at the Collings campus in Stow, MA.
The organization also has a satellite operations base in Houston, Texas located at Ellington Field primarily housing the Korean War and Vietnam War jet aircraft and helicopter collection. The Collings Foundation operates two touring collections of historic military aircraft: The Wings of Freedom Tour and The Vietnam Memorial Flight. The Wings of Freedom flights also provided a platform for testing a smartphone-based Automatic dependent surveillance – broadcast (ADS-B), a means of future air safety technology.Crow Island Airport
Crow Island Airport (also known as Crow Island Airpark) is a private airport in Stow, Massachusetts, United States with a 2,300 foot grass airstrip which is popular with "pilots flying a variety of aircraft including, trikes, ultralights, vintage taildraggers, seaplanes, hang gliders, powered paragliders, powered parachutes, RC aircraft and more."Fred Mitchell (baseball)
Frederick Francis Mitchell, born Frederick Francis Yapp (June 5, 1878 – October 13, 1970), was an American right-handed pitcher, catcher, first baseman and manager in Major League Baseball. After pitching for the Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Athletics, Philadelphia Phillies, and Brooklyn Superbas from 1901 to 1905, he returned to the major leagues as a catcher for the New York Highlanders in 1910. He was noted for relieving Hall of Famer Cy Young in the first-ever Red Sox game.
Mitchell was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In 1917, he joined the Chicago Cubs as team president, and was later hired as manager. In his second year at the helm, he won the 1918 National League pennant, losing to the Red Sox in the 1918 World Series. However, in the middle of the 1919 season, he was relieved of his president duties and one year later, he was out of a job. The Boston Braves hired him as manager for the 1921 season, but his success in Chicago did not follow him to his hometown Braves, where he lost 100 games twice. After he was fired by the Braves, he returned to Harvard University where he had previously coached baseball in 1916. He remained at Harvard for thirty years until his retirement. Mitchell was best known for his excellence in coaching.
Mitchell died in Newton, Massachusetts at age 92. He is buried in Brookside Cemetery in Stow, Massachusetts.Hapgood House
The Hapgood House is a historic house at 76 Treaty Elm Lane in Stow, Massachusetts. Built c. 1726, it is a well-preserved late First Period, including a rare surviving stairway balustrade from the period. The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.Holly-Anne Ruggiero
Holly-Anne Ruggiero (born November 16 ) is an American Theatre Director living in New York City and New Orleans. She has worked on Broadway and Off-Broadway since 2000 and is now the Lead Producer of two theatrical production companies based in New York and New Orleans.John Witt Randall
John Witt Randall (November 13, 1813 – January 25, 1892) was an American naturalist, poet, and art collector.
He was a son of the eminent Boston physician Dr. John Randall, Harvard College Class of 1802, and his wife Elizabeth Wells (a granddaughter of Founding Father Samuel Adams). H
After receiving his preparatory education at Mr. Green's school in Jamaica Plain and at the Boston Latin School, he studied at Harvard College, graduating in the Class of 1834. Although he took his Doctor of Medicine degree at Harvard Medical School, he never practiced medicine. Randall was described by a classmate: "Though among us, he was not wholly of us, but seemed to have thoughts, pursuits and aspirations to which we were strangers".His natural history publications include two papers about beetles (one concerning the beetles of Maine, the other, the beetles of Massachusetts), a paper about crustaceans from the West Coast of the United States and Hawaii, and a book of poetry entitled, Consolations of Solitude, published by John P. Jewett, (publisher of Uncle Tom's Cabin); it was commended in the North American Review, the reviewer likening his descriptions of nature to those of William Cullen Bryant. A further volume on the natural history of Maine and five further volumes of poetry were prepared; one of them, The Fairies' Festival, with illustrations by Francis Gilbert Attwood, was published in 1895 after his death by Joseph Knight Company of Boston, and edited by Francis Ellingwood Abbot.
An art collector, Randall amassed a large collection at his family seat in Stow, Massachusetts. A lifelong bachelor, Randall died at the age of seventy-eight.Kate Hogan
Kate Hogan (born January 15, 1957 in Lynn, Massachusetts) is an American politician from Stow, Massachusetts. A Democrat, she is a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives representing the 3rd Middlesex district. She was first elected in 2008 and took office on January 7, 2009.The 3rd Middlesex district, which includes the towns of Bolton, Hudson, Maynard and Stow, was represented for 24 years by Patricia Walrath, who decided not to seek re-election in 2008. Five candidates ran for to succeed her: three Democrats, one Republican and one Independent. Prior to the primary, Walrath endorsed Hogan as her chosen successor.In the three-way primary election held on September 16, 2008, Hogan won 50 percent of the vote to the second-placed finisher's 40 percent. She went on to face two opponents in the general election on November 4, narrowly besting the Republican nominee, Hudson selectman Sonny Parente, by 10,156 votes to 9,281. She ran for re-election in 2010, facing no Republican opponent and taking 60% of the vote against an Independent.Her first action on being sworn-in on January 7, 2009 was to turn down a pay raise. She donated the $3,000 increase in legislative salaries to the local libraries in Bolton, Hudson, Maynard and Stow.On February 26, 2015 Speaker Robert DeLeo appointed Hogan as Chair of the Joint Committee on Public Health.
Hogan, a native of Lynn, Massachusetts, is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst and works as vice president of Gnomon Inc., a Boston printing company. She has long been involved in local Democratic politics, having served as an officer of the Stow Democratic Town Committee, the Middlesex and Worcester Democrats and as co-chairman of the Maynard Democratic Town Committee from 1999 to 2006. She has also sat on several of Stow's town committees, including the Community Preservation Committee and the Council on Aging.Hogan, a lesbian, is married to Susan Vick. She is one of five openly LGBT members of the Massachusetts General Court, alongside Representatives Sarah Peake (D–Provincetown), Liz Malia (D–Jamaica Plain) and Denise Andrews (D–Orange), as well as Senator Stan Rosenberg (D–Amherst). Her 2008 and 2010 campaigns won the support of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund.Minute Man Air Field
Minute Man Air Field (IATA: MMN, FAA LID: 6B6) is a public-use airport located at 302 Boxboro Road, Stow, Massachusetts, United States. The airport is privately owned by Minute Man Airfield, Inc.Started as a 1700 ft grass landing strip known as Erikson Field in 1963 by local pilots, the airport was purchased by Paul McPherson in 1966. Paul and his son, Don, paved and extended the 2000 foot runway, added a parallel taxiway, tie-downs for 50 planes, installed AVGAS pumps and constructed the Operations Building. The former grass strip was re-opened as Minute Man Air Field on July 1, 1969. Paul's wife and daughter also opened a small coffee shop on the field called "Peg's Place" later on.Over the decades, the airport has added aircraft maintenance and storage hangars, a runway extension, a second "cross-wind" runway, and aircraft parking aprons. In the early 1990s, 100 acres of land, was added to the field's land holdings instead of becoming a housing development. The open space is being farmed and serves as home to many species of wildlife. This acreage has recently been sold and is the site of a proposed 55+ "active adult" neighborhood consisting of 60+ housing units.
Minute Man now has a 2800-foot paved-lighted-instrumented runway and a 1600-foot gravel-visual runway.
The airfield is home to more than 60 based aircraft including 3 helicopters stored in four hangars and on tie-downs along the taxi-ways and aprons. In addition to Nancy's Air Field Café, reputed as a fly-in or drive-in destination for fine food and friendly service, the airport is home to numerous other businesses.
The airport is still owned and operated by Don McPherson, and the operations are overseen by a board of Airport Commissioners. The Board is made up of local business, government, and aviation professionals who voluntarily serve as Commissioners.Patricia Walrath
Patricia A. Walrath (born August 11, 1941 in Brainerd, Minnesota) is an American politician who represented the 3rd Middlesex district in the Massachusetts House of Representatives from 1985 to 2009, was a member of the Stow, Massachusetts Board of Selectmen from 1980 to 1986, and the Stow Finance Committee from 1977 to 1980.Randall-Hale Homestead
The Randall—Hale Homestead is a historic First Period house at 6 Sudbury Road in Stow, Massachusetts. The oldest portion of this 2-1/2 story timber frame house was built c. 1710, making it one of Stow's oldest buildings. The main block, which is most prominently visible from the street, was enlarged to its present size c. 1760, and the building has had several further additions in the following 200+ years. The house was built by Stephen Randall, one of Stow's first landowners.The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1996.Tenney Homestead
The Tenney Homestead is a historic First Period house at 156 Taylor Road in Stow, Massachusetts. This 2-1/2 story timber frame house dates to the first quarter of the 18th century, and has two distinctive characteristics. The first, its large central chimney, which is stone at its lower levels and brick from the attic up, is one of only a small number of surviving period houses in Middlesex County to use stone. The second is a section of horizontal sheathing that shows evidence of the application of paint by a sponge. The house was associated with the Tenney family from its construction into the 20th century.The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.Thomas P. Salmon
Thomas Paul Salmon (born August 19, 1932) is a U.S. Democratic Party politician who served as the 75th Governor of Vermont from 1973 to 1977.Tom Barrasso
Thomas Patrick Barrasso (born March 31, 1965) is an American professional ice hockey coach and former player. Barrasso was a goaltender for 18 seasons in the National Hockey League for the Buffalo Sabres, Pittsburgh Penguins, Ottawa Senators, Carolina Hurricanes, Toronto Maple Leafs, and St. Louis Blues. He was the only goaltender to ever play in the NHL directly from high school, without having played major junior, college, or some other form of professional hockey first. He was the youngest winner of the league's Vezina Trophy for best goaltender, as an 18-year-old rookie in 1984. He was also the youngest goaltender to win Calder Memorial Trophy, a record he still holds as of the end of 2017-18 season. Barrasso was a member of successive Stanley Cup championship teams in 1991 and 1992 with the Pittsburgh Penguins. He was inducted as a member of the United States Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.
After retiring from active play, Barrasso was an assistant coach and in charge of goaltending development for the Carolina Hurricanes for five years. In June 2012, Barrasso joined former Hurricanes coach Paul Maurice on the coaching staff at Metallurg Magnitogorsk of the Kontinental Hockey League. In 2016 he joined Asiago Hockey in the Alps Hockey League as their head coach, winning the championship during the 2017-18 season. In October 2018, Barasso left Asiago to become head coach of the Sheffield Steelers of the EIHL.Walcott-Whitney House
The Walcott-Whitney House is a historic late First Period house at 137 Tuttle Lane in Stow, Massachusetts. It is a 2-1/2 story timber frame house, five bays wide, with a side gable roof, clapboard siding, and a large central chimney. A leanto extends to the rear, giving it a saltbox profile. The front facade is asymmetrical, with a roughly centered entrance that has a Federal period surround of sidelights, pilasters, and entablature with cornice. The house was built c. 1720-30, and is a well-preserved example of the period. It is particularly noted for its well-preserved front staircase.The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990.William Goffe
William Goffe (1605?–1679?) was an English Roundhead politician and soldier, perhaps best known for his role in the execution of King Charles I and later flight to America.
Places adjacent to Stow, Massachusetts
Municipalities and communities of Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States