Tewksbury, Massachusetts

Tewksbury is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 28,961.

Tewksbury, Massachusetts
Tewksbury Hospital, Old Administration Building
Tewksbury Hospital, Old Administration Building
Official seal of Tewksbury, Massachusetts

Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°36′38″N 71°14′05″W / 42.61056°N 71.23472°WCoordinates: 42°36′38″N 71°14′05″W / 42.61056°N 71.23472°W
CountryUnited States
 • TypeOpen town meeting
 • Total21.1 sq mi (54.5 km2)
 • Land20.7 sq mi (53.7 km2)
 • Water0.3 sq mi (0.9 km2)
126 ft (38 m)
 • Total28,961
 • Density1,400/sq mi (530/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s)978 / 351
FIPS code25-69415
GNIS feature ID0618238


Tewksbury was first settled in 1637 and was officially incorporated on December 17, 1734, from Billerica. There is no evidence that the town was named after Tewkesbury, England.[1] Still, Tewksbury, Massachusetts and Tewkesbury, England kept connected through a local committee called the twinning committee.[2] One of the oldest sections of town is the area around the Shawsheen River. This is where the Shawshin tribe settled, allowing them access to a great food source through fishing in the river. Tewksbury was also known for a historic visit by President Andrew Jackson, stopping off at local watering hole, Brown's Tavern.[3]

On July 24, 1857, a powerful tornado swept through Tewksbury. The tempest began at Round Pond as a small water spout, and traveled west and then southeast to the Shawsheen River. It dissipated at North Wilmington. Several corn fields and orchards were severely damaged, with one residence having its roof blown off. The tornado was powerful enough to flatten barns and sheds, pull up large trees by their roots, and sweep away and kill a team of oxen. Due to the sparse population, and homes located above the valley floor, no one was killed, and only a few people were injured.[4]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 21.1 square miles (55 km2), of which 20.7 square miles (54 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2), or 1.61%, is water.

The Merrimack River forms part of the northern boundary of Tewksbury, and the Shawsheen River runs through the southern end of town as well.

Tewksbury is in the Greater Lowell metropolitan area. The town is located about 19 miles (31 km) north-northwest of Boston along I-93 and I-495 (Boston's outer beltway). Tewksbury is bordered by the city of Lowell to the northwest, Dracut to the north (unreachable across the Merrimack), Andover to the northeast, Wilmington to the southeast, and Billerica to the southwest. Tewksbury also meets the town of Chelmsford at a point in the middle of the Concord River along with Lowell and Billerica.


The LRTA 12 bus connects Tewksbury to Lowell and Wilmington on the MBTA Commuter Rail Lowell Line.


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 28,851 people, 9,964 households, and 7,692 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,392.3 people per square mile (537.6/km²). There were 10,158 housing units at an average density of 490.2 per square mile (189.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.44% White, 0.67% African American, 0.12% Native American, 1.59% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.41% from other races, and 0.75% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.22% of the population.

There were 9,964 households out of which 35.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.1% were married couples living together, 9.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.8% were non-families. 18.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.24.

The town's population was spread out, with 25.0% under the age of 18, 6.2% from 18 to 24, 32.8% from 25 to 44, 24.6% from 45 to 64, and 11.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $68,800, and the median income for a family was $76,443. Males had a median income of $50,296 versus $33,918 for females. The per capita income for the town was $27,031. About 1.9% of families and 3.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.4% of those under age 18 and 5.3% of those age 65 or over.


Tewksbury, like most towns in Massachusetts, operates under a New England town form of government. Day-to-day management is led by a Town Manager, who reports to the town's five member Board of Selectmen. Every spring the town holds an Open Town Meeting where the budget is submitted for approval by the town's citizens.

Tewksbury is located in the 6th Congressional District and thus represented in the House of Representatives by Seth Moulton of Salem. In the Senate by Senators Ed Markey of Malden and Elizabeth Warren of Cambridge.

Tewksbury is one of the more Republican-leaning towns in the Commonwealth. It was one of the few communities who supported John McCain over Barack Obama in the 2008 Presidential Election.[16] In the special election to replace the late Ted Kennedy, Tewksbury supported Scott Brown over Martha Coakley by a 2-to-1 margin.[17]

The former Tew-Mac Airport was located in the town [18] before it was closed in 1997 and replaced with condos and a country club.[19]


Tewksbury Hospital, a state-owned facility, is located here. Originally built as an almshouse in the mid-19th century, it includes over 900 acres (3.6 km2) of open space. Tewksbury Hospital is home to both the Department of Mental Health and the Department of Public Health, and has many different programs for addictive behavior and other health concerns. Anne Sullivan, (Helen Keller's teacher), spent time at Tewksbury Hospital before Annie was sent to the Kellers and who suffered the loss of her younger brother, James, in his childhood before her departure.

Notable residents

  • Miko Kaufman (1924–2016) Famous sculptor and Presidential & Olympic Medal designer, recipient of Saultus Award 1992 [20]
  • Adelbert Ames (d. 1933), Medal of Honor recipient; last surviving Civil War general[21]
  • George D. Behrakis, philanthropist and retired businessman.
  • John James Nazarian, celebrity private investigator
  • Scott Oberg, Professional baseball player for the Colorado Rockies
  • Anne Sullivan, tutor and companion of Helen Keller
  • James "Jimmy" Sullivan, younger brother of above mentioned Annie, who died in his childhood while living with Annie at Tewsburry's Almshouse.
  • Paul Sullivan (d. 2007) former selectman, talk show host on WBZ radio, Boston
  • John Trull, captain of the Tewksbury minutemen in the Revolutionary War
  • David Wade, television news anchor, WBZ Boston
  • Dale Dorman, retired radio personality, WRKO, Kiss 108, Oldies 103
  • Barry Ace, Professional Wrestler (Ring of Honor)/Actor
  • Brian Wolfe, Private detective from the Investigation Discovery show Cry Wolfe
  • Michael Rock, morning personality on Fun 107 radio, New Bedford/Providence


The Tewksbury public schools district serves students in pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade by a high school, two junior high schools and four elementary schools, specifically:

The 4 elementary schools in Tewksbury were redistricted in 2010. Before the switch, each school had its own district and served Grades K-4. Now, The 2 schools on each side of town were grouped together and each was given specific grades for that school.

North Tewksbury:

  • Loella F. Dewing Elementary School – Grades PreK–2
  • North Street Elementary School – Grades 3–4

South Tewksbury:

  • Heath Brook Elementary School – Grades K–2
  • Louise Davy Trahan Elementary School – Grades 3–4

High school students have the option to attend Shawsheen Valley Technical High School, which serves five area communities.

The nearest community college, Middlesex Community College, has two campuses in nearby Lowell and Bedford. The nearest state university is the University of Massachusetts Lowell, with several state colleges in Salem and Framingham. The nearest private college is Merrimack College in North Andover, with several others within an hour drive in Boston.


Tewksbury is served by the Boston television stations, and by newspapers such as the Lowell Sun and the Town Crier (weekly).


  1. ^ Pride, Edward W. [1] "Tewksbury; a short history" Riverside Press 1888 (accessed 16 March 2019)
  2. ^ [2] Richard Howe: Tewksbury and Tewkesbury (accessed 16 Oct 2016)
  3. ^ [3] Archived August 15, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Tewksbury Tornado of 1857 at CelebrateBoston.com
  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. ^ "Massachusetts results". The Boston Globe. November 5, 2008. Archived from the original on February 1, 2014.
  17. ^ "Check out this Page on Boston.com". The Boston Globe. December 8, 2009.
  18. ^ [4] Archived August 15, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ "Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields: Central Massachusetts". www.airfields-freeman.com. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  20. ^ "Artist Page". medallicartcollector.com. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  21. ^ Warner, Ezra J. (1964). Generals in Blue: Lives of the Union Commanders. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press. p. 6. ISBN 0-8071-0822-7.

External links

Adelbert Ames

Adelbert Ames (October 31, 1835 – April 13, 1933) was an American sailor, soldier, and politician who served with distinction as a Union Army general during the American Civil War. A Radical Republican, he was military governor, U.S. Senator, and civilian governor in Reconstruction-era Mississippi. In 1898, he served as a United States Army general during the Spanish–American War. He was the last Republican to serve as the state governor of Mississippi until the election of Kirk Fordice, who took office in January 1992, 116 years since Ames vacated the office.

Ames was the second to last general officer of the Civil War to die. He succumbed at the age of ninety-seven in 1933. He was outlived in this respect only by Aaron Daggett, who died in 1938 at the age of one hundred. However, because Daggett was a brigadier general by brevet rank only, Ames was the last full-ranked Civil War general to die.

Anne Sullivan

Johanna Mansfield Sullivan Macy (April 14, 1866 – October 20, 1936), better known as Anne Sullivan, was an American teacher best known for being the instructor and lifelong companion of Helen Keller.At the age of five, Sullivan contracted trachoma, an eye disease, which left her blind and without reading or writing skills. She received her education as a student of the Perkins School for the Blind, where upon graduation she became a teacher to Keller when she was 20.

Boston Junior Rangers

The Boston Junior Rangers are a Tier III Junior A ice hockey organization playing in Tewksbury, Massachusetts. The team plays in the Eastern Hockey League (EHL).

J.W. Buckley

J.W. Buckley (born 1978) is a writer originally from Tewksbury, Massachusetts.

J.W. attended Austin Preparatory School before going onto Beloit College and finally Northeastern University.

Although J.W. is considered somewhat of a recluse, he has been featured in articles and/or interviews in publications such as Rolling Stone, Megawords Magazine, and The New Yorker. He has also been featured on The National Geographic Channel, and The History Channel.

Jason Brennan

Jason F. Brennan (born 1979) is an American philosopher and political scientist. He is currently the Robert J. and Elizabeth Flanagan Family Professor of Strategy, Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy at the McDonough School of Business and Professor of Philosophy at Georgetown University.Brennan writes about democratic theory, the ethics of voting, competence and power, freedom, and the moral foundations of commercial society.

Jim Miceli

James R. Miceli (March 25, 1935 – April 21, 2018) was an American Democratic politician who represented Middlesex County's 19th district in the Massachusetts State Legislature.

John J. McCabe

John Joseph McCabe (March 13, 1954 - September 27, 1969) was a youth from Tewksbury, Massachusetts who was abducted and murdered after attending a Knights of Columbus dance in Lowell, Massachusetts. His bound and strangled body was found in an empty lot on Maple Street in Lowell the next day. His murder remained unsolved for 41 years until April 2011 when three men were arrested for his murder. The case was covered in a 48 Hours episode titled "The Pact". On February 20, 2014, Walter Shelly, 62, of Tewksbury was sentenced in Lowell Superior Court to life in prison for the murder of John J. McCabe.

John Trull

Capt. John Trull (1738–1797) was the commander of the Tewksbury, Massachusetts minuteman company on the first day of the American Revolution, at the Battle of Lexington & Concord.

Lauren Terrazzano

Lauren Elizabeth Terrazzano (March 28, 1968 - May 15, 2007) was an American journalist best known for her "Life, With Cancer" Newsday column and other writings about her illness with cancer.

Lowell Ordnance Plant

The Lowell Ordnance Plant was a small arms plant located on the border of Lowell, Billerica, and Tewksbury, Massachusetts that operated under contract from the Remington Arms Company between 1942 and 1943. It mostly produced .50 caliber machine gun ammo. A small run of .30 caliber machine gun ammo was also manufactured for less than a year.

The site has been identified as contaminated and has been undergoing remediation since the mid-1980s. It is currently being used as an industrial park.

Massachusetts Route 38

Route 38 is a state highway in the U.S. state of Massachusetts, traveling 26.5 miles (42.6 km) from Route 28 in Somerville north via Lowell to the New Hampshire state line in Dracut, where it continues as New Hampshire Route 38 in Pelham, New Hampshire. Although its southern terminus is at Route 28, some signage indicates that Route 38 continues south towards Sullivan Square in Boston.

Paul Sullivan (radio)

Paul Harold "Sully" Sullivan (May 24, 1957 – September 9, 2007) was an accomplished radio talk-show host of "The Paul Sullivan Show" on WBZ radio. He was best known for his blue-collar politics and plebeian attitude.

Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems

Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems, a subsidiary of Raytheon Company, is headquartered in Tewksbury, MA. Its president is Wes Kremer. It has more than 12,700 employees.

Robert E. Cleary

Robert Earl Cleary (June 2, 1931 – February 11, 2018) was a United States Marine who served as the 10th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps from 1983 to 1987. He served in the Marines for 36 years, including seeing in combat in both the Korean War and the Vietnam War. For his actions in Vietnam, he was awarded the Silver Star, the Navy Commendation Medal, and two Purple Hearts.

He was the last Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps to have served in the Korean War.

Scott Oberg

Scott Michael Oberg (born March 13, 1990) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the Colorado Rockies of Major League Baseball (MLB).

Shawsheen River

The Shawsheen River is a 26.7-mile-long (43.0 km) tributary of the Merrimack River in northeast Massachusetts. The name has had various spellings. According to Bailey's history of Andover, the spelling Shawshin was the most common in the old records, although Shawshine, Shashin, Shashine, Shashene, Shawshene, and later, Shawsheen, are found. The name, says Bailey, is said to mean "Great Spring".The river runs generally northward through the towns of Bedford, Billerica, Wilmington, Tewksbury, Andover, and Lawrence, where it joins the Merrimack. Like its parent, the river has played an important role in the development of the area, including industrial development, with many mills built to take advantage of the river's power. Today there are trails and parks located along several sections of the river, and a preservation effort is carried out by the Shawsheen River Watershed Association.

In June 2001, the Merrimack River Watershed Council determined that the Shawsheen River failed to meet water quality standards. This situation was largely attributed to stormwater runoff via town, private and state storm drain systems. As a result of increased pollutants, major portions of the Shawsheen River are now listed as impaired waters on the 303(d) list of the Clean Water Act.The removal of the Marland Place Dam (originally built in the 1700s) and Balmoral Dam (originally built in the 1920s) allowed alewife and blueback herring to spawn upstream to the Ballardvale Dam in spring 2017, for the first time in over 200 years.

Tew-Mac Airport

Tew Mac Airport (FAA LID: B09) was an airport in Tewksbury, Massachusetts. It was closed in 1997.

The airport was located off Route 38 in Tewksbury, MA near the border with Wilmington.

The airport was opened in 1951.And is now known as the Tewksbury Country ClubIt was closed in 1997 and replaced with a golf course and condos.

Tewksbury Memorial High School

Tewksbury Memorial High School is a suburban public high school located at 320 Pleasant Street in Tewksbury, Massachusetts, USA. Serving grades 9-12, it is the only public high school in the town. Its total enrollment for the 2005-2006 school year was 1,206.

Tewksbury Mills

Tewksbury Mills is a proposed mall that was proposed a few years ago by the Mills Corporation. It is to be around a millions square feet and contain two skating rinks.

Municipalities and communities of Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
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