Westford, Massachusetts

Westford is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 24,310 at the 2017 census.

Westford, Massachusetts
Old Westford Academy, now the Westford Museum
Old Westford Academy,
now the Westford Museum
Official seal of Westford, Massachusetts

Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°34′45″N 71°26′18″W / 42.57917°N 71.43833°WCoordinates: 42°34′45″N 71°26′18″W / 42.57917°N 71.43833°W
CountryUnited States
Settled1635 [1]
IncorporatedSeptember 23, 1729
 • TypeOpen town meeting
 • Total31.3 sq mi (81.1 km2)
 • Land30.6 sq mi (79.3 km2)
 • Water0.7 sq mi (1.9 km2)
406 ft (124 m)
 • Total24,310
 • Density712.1/sq mi (274.8/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP Code
Area code(s)351/978
FIPS code25-76135
GNIS feature ID0618244


Westford Common looking down Main St
Westford Common, looking down Main Street

Originally a part of neighboring Chelmsford, West Chelmsford soon grew large enough to sustain its own governance, and was officially incorporated as Westford on September 23, 1729.[2][3]

In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, Westford primarily produced granite, apples, and worsted yarn. The Abbot Worsted Company was said to be the first company in the nation to use camel hair for worsted yarns.[4] Citizens from Westford also had some notable involvement in the Revolutionary War.[2] Westford Minutemen were alerted by efforts of Samuel Prescott who alerted Acton, to the southeast towards Stow.

WestfordMA HenryFletcherHouse
Henry Fletcher House was built circa 1813

Paul Revere's son attended Westford Academy and a bell cast by Revere graces its lobby today.[5] A weather vane made by Paul Revere sits atop the Abbot Elementary school.

By the end of the American Civil War, as roads and transportation improved, Westford began to serve as a residential suburb for the factories of Lowell, becoming one of the earliest notable examples of suburban sprawl. Throughout the 20th century (and with the invention of the automobile), Westford progressively grew, continuing to serve as residential housing for the industries of Lowell, and later, Boston.

In the 1960s, the town was home to one of the research sites supporting Project West Ford.

By the 1970s, with the advent of the 128 Technology Belt, Westford began to act as a suburb for high-tech firms in Burlington, Woburn, and other areas, and later became a center of technology itself.

By the 1990s, Westford was home to offices for NETSCOUT, Red Hat, Samsung, Sonus Networks, Seagate, Iris Associates, Visual Solutions, and many other technology firms, most located along Massachusetts Route 110, parallel to I-495. It is also the North American headquarters for Puma, which holds a road race in town.[6] The leading manufacturer of EEG electrodes, HydroDot Inc., located here in 2007.

Today, Westford's agricultural past has given way to rapidly expanding high technology industries, suburban retail, and upper-middle class residential areas.

Westford's inter-town sports teams have the colors of maroon, white, and sometimes black.


Westford, Mass. (2673880403)
Lithograph of Westford from 1886 by L.R. Burleigh with list of landmarks

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 31.3 square miles (81 km2), of which 30.6 square miles (79 km2) is land and 0.7 square miles (1.8 km2) (2.30%) is water.

The town is bordered by Chelmsford to the east, Tyngsborough to the north, Groton to the west, Littleton to the southwest, Acton to the south, and Carlisle to the southeast.

Regionally, it is on the edge of the Merrimack Valley, Northern Middlesex County, and the Metrowest regions of Massachusetts.

Colloquially, the town is divided into different regions based on location, including Forge Village, Nabnasset, Graniteville, Parker Village, and Center of Town.

The town was rated as #11 Best Places to live by CNN Money in 2013.[7]


Historical population
* = population estimate.
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.[8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17]

As of the 2010 census[18] there were 21,951 people, 7,498 households, and 6,165 families residing in the town. The racial makeup of the town was 76.1% White, 0.40% African American, 0.1% Native American, 22.6% Asian (10.7% Indian, 8.2% Chinese, 1.6% Korean, 0.3% Cambodian, 0.2% Vietnamese, 0.2% Japanese, 0.1% Filipino, 0.1% Pakistani, 0.1% Bangladeshi), 0.0% Pacific Islander, 0.30% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.5% of the population.

As of the 2010 census,[18] there were 7,498 households out of which 45.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 72.5% were married couples living together, 7.3% had a female head of household, and 17.8% were other families. The average household size was 2.93 and the average family size was 3.27.

In the town, the population was spread out with 31.8% under the age of 18, 4.2% from 18 to 24, 32.8% from 25 to 44, 23.9% from 45 to 64, and 7.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.4 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $121,136, and the median income for a family was $137,230. The per capita income for the town was $48,951. About 1.3% of families and 1.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.2% of those under age 18 and 1.0% of those age 65 or over.


Westford Public Schools

The Superintendent of Westford's Public Schools is Everett "Bill" Olsen, who has held that role since 1986. [1] The Assistant Superintendent is Kerry Clery. [2]

1899 Westford public library Massachusetts
J.V. Fletcher Library, built 1895

Nashoba Valley Technical High School District

Nashoba Valley Technical High School enrolls students from Westford, Chelmsford, Ayer, Groton, Littleton, Townsend, Shirley, and Pepperell

Established in 1968, Nashoba Valley Technical High School is a public, four-year, vocational high school.


Freight travels daily through Westford over the tracks of the historic Stony Brook Railroad. The line currently serves as a major corridor of Pan Am Railways' District 3 which connects New Hampshire and Maine with western Massachusetts, Vermont, and New York.[19] Interstate 495 (Massachusetts) also passes through the town, linking it to other parts of the state as well as New Hampshire.[20] US-3 passes through the town, although the nearest interchanges are located in neighboring Tyngsborough (exit 34) and Chelmsford (exit 33).

The LRTA 15 bus connects Westford along Route 110 with Chelmsford and the Lowell train station on the MBTA Commuter Rail Lowell Line.

Local routes passing through town are Massachusetts Routes 110, 40, 225, and 27.

Annual events

  • In January or February, Westford Funfest has an annual Snow Sculpture contest - www.westford.com/funfest - depending on snow.
  • In March or April, Westford FunFest has Breakfast with the Bunny.
  • In May, the Westford Charitable Foundation 5k/10k Road Races, or The Westford Road Race are held.
  • In May, the Kiwanis club hosts the Apple Blossom Parade and Carnival [3].
  • In June, The First Parish Church hosts the Strawberry Festival.
  • In August, the Westford Rotary Club hosts the Blues & Brews Festival as well as the Pig & Pepper Festival at the Nashoba Valley Ski Area, featuring top blues bands and many local beers to sample.
  • In October, the Westford Education Foundation sponsors the Family Fun Run, Westford FunFest holds a Fall Festival at Kimball Farms, and the Nashoba Valley Ski Resort runs the Witch's Woods Halloween Screampark.
  • In December, First Parish Church hosts the Westford Greens Sale, Westford Academy has its annual Holiday Bazaar, Westford FunFest holds the Festival of Trees, Wreaths and Gingerbread Creations and Breakfast with Santa.
  • In December, Westford's United Methodist Church holds an outdoor Live Nativity overlooking the Stony Brook Reservoir pond, including farm animals, music & bonfire http://www.umcw.org/christmas [21]
  • In December, the Rabbi from Chabad Nashoba Valley lights the candles of the 9 foot Menorah during Chanukah. One of the evenings includes music and dancing after the lighting. The menorah is displayed on the town common.
  • There is a celebratory parade of where the graduated seniors of Westford Academy make trips around the middle schools as a tribute to their experience with the teachers at each place and then ride through town center.

Notable people

Points of Interest


  1. ^ History of the town of Westford, in the county of Middlesex, Massachusetts, 1659–1883 by Hodgman, Edwin R. (Edwin Ruthven), 1819–1900; Westford Town History Association (Westford, Mass.)
  2. ^ a b http://www.westford.com/museum/research_westford_history.html
  3. ^ http://westford.patch.com/articles/you-asked-patch-answers-7c8c087c
  4. ^ Oliphant, Robert W. "A brief history of Westford". Westford Museum and Historical Society. Retrieved 18 April 2014.
  5. ^ http://www.wickedlocal.com/westford/town_info/history/x2136193253#axzz1YSz4BoBM
  6. ^ http://westford.patch.com/articles/image-gallery-puma-5-miler-road-race#photo-7436786 IMAGE GALLERY: Puma 5 Miler Road Race, Westford Patch
  7. ^ "Best Places To Live 2013". MONEY.com. Retrieved 2018-04-02.
  8. ^ "Total Population (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010.
  9. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  10. ^ "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.
  11. ^ "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.
  12. ^ "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.
  13. ^ "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.
  14. ^ "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.
  15. ^ "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.
  16. ^ "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.
  17. ^ "1850 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  18. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  19. ^ Pan Am Railways route map.panamrailways.com. Accessed April 30, 2007.
  20. ^ "interstate-guide.com". Accessed November 5, 2008.
  21. ^ http://www.wickedlocal.com/x1479406947/A-Christmas-tradition-continues-in-Westford
  22. ^ Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Marquis Who's Who. 1967.
  23. ^ World Golf Hall of Fame Profile: Pat Bradley
  24. ^ http://westford.patch.com/articles/this-week-in-sports-fall-2011-openers
  25. ^ Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary War, 1775-1783, 13, Boston: Wright and Potter, 1905, p. 451
  26. ^ O'Connor, Austin (2003-05-04), "Westford actor Aaron Stanford is hot", Lowell Sun, retrieved 2012-01-22
  27. ^ "Ellen Swallow Richards", Biographical Snapshots of Famous Women and Minority Chemists, Journal of Chemical Education, retrieved 2012-01-22
  28. ^ Hare, Bill (2010-11-03), Mike Fucito: Seattle Sounders' Embodiment of Desire and Spirit, Bleacher Report, retrieved 2012-01-22
  29. ^ Westford Museum

Further reading

External links

Aaron Stanford

Aaron Stanford (born December 27, 1976) is an American actor best known for his roles as Pyro in X2 and X-Men: The Last Stand, and Doug in the 2006 remake of The Hills Have Eyes. From 2010 to 2013, he starred as Birkhoff in Nikita. He has also starred as James Cole on the television series 12 Monkeys, based on the 1995 film of the same name.

Brookside Historic District

The Brookside Historic District of Westford, Massachusetts encompasses surviving elements of the 19th century Brookside mill village, the smallest of the town's three 19th-century industrial villages. Developed between about 1860 and 1904, it includes surviving mill buildings and a variety of mill-related worker housing. The district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2003.

Fairview Cemetery (Westford, Massachusetts)

Fairview Cemetery is a historic cemetery on Main Street in Westford, Massachusetts. This cemetery is located on Main Street at the corner of Tadmuck Road. It was originally called East Burying Ground and Snow Cemetery. The oldest tombstone dates to 1702, making it one of the town's oldest cemeteries. The cemetery sits on 10 1/2 acres, a substantial enlargement that began in the 1860s, when new portions of the cemetery were laid out in the then-fashionable rural cemetery style.The cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

Forge Village Historic District

The Forge Village Historic District of Westford, Massachusetts encompasses one of the town's historic 19th century mill villages. The focal point of the district is the mill complex of the Abbot Worsted Company, around which the village expanded after its founding in 1854. Prior to its founding the area was the site of a number of blacksmithies and iron forging operations, and was the site of a fulling mill in the 18th century. The center of the district is at the junction of East and West Prescott Streets with Pleasant Street, radiating away to ballfields on West Prescott, Abbot Street at Pleasant, and just beyond Orchard Street on East Prescott. Worker housing occupies a number of adjacent streets in the area.The district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2002.

Graniteville Historic District (Westford, Massachusetts)

The Graniteville Historic District of Westford, Massachusetts encompasses one of the town's historic 19th century industrial villages. The area was, until the arrival of the railroad in 1847, primarily known for its granite quarries. The railroad's arrival prompted the construction of an industrial mill by Charles G. Sargent, and the area developed rapidly thereafter. A significant amount of housing stock, as well as civic institutional buildings, were built during the second half of the 19th century. The district is bounded on the east by River Street and on the south by Bridge Street and North Main Street. The western edge of the district runs just before North Main Street's junction with West Street, northward and then eastward to encompass a number of quarry sites, before meeting North Main Street at River Street.

The district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2002.

Haystack Observatory

Haystack Observatory is an astronomical observatory owned by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). It is located in Westford, Massachusetts (US), approximately 45 kilometers (28 mi) northwest of Boston. Haystack was initially built by MIT's Lincoln Laboratory for the United States Air Force and was known as Haystack Microwave Research Facility. Construction began in 1960, and the antenna began operating in 1964. In 1970 the facility was transferred to MIT, which then formed the Northeast Radio Observatory Corporation (NEROC) with a number of other universities to operate the site as the Haystack Observatory. As of January 2012, a total of nine institutions participated in NEROC.The Haystack Observatory site is also the location of the Millstone Hill Observatory, an atmospheric sciences research center. Lincoln Laboratory continues to use the site, which it calls the Lincoln Space Surveillance Complex (LSSC). The George R. Wallace Astrophysical Observatory of MIT's Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences is located south of the Haystack dome and east of the Westford dome. The Amateur Telescope Makers of Boston has its clubhouse on the MIT property.Haystack Vallis on Mercury is named after this observatory.

Henry Fletcher House

The Henry Fletcher House is a historic house at 224 Concord Road in Westford, Massachusetts. Built c. 1810-13, it is a rare example of very late Georgian style timber-frame construction, with a large central chimney characteristic of colonial-era houses. It is styled with a mix of late Georgian and Federal style woodwork. The property's barn was also built by Henry Fletcher using the same construction methods. The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993.

Hillside Cemetery (Westford, Massachusetts)

Hillside Cemetery, also known as the North Burying Ground, is a historic cemetery on Depot and Nutting Roads in Westford, Massachusetts. The cemetery was established in 1753, and is the burial site of a number of people important in local history. It contains approximately 300 burials, and continues in active use. The cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

James Arciero

James Arciero is an American state legislator serving in the Massachusetts House of Representatives as a Democrat.

Arciero received his bachelor's degree in political science from University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and his masters from Suffolk University.

Jim Todd

Jim Todd (born 1952 in Billerica, Massachusetts) is a professional basketball coach who last served as an assistant for the New York Knicks.

Joel Abbot

Joel Abbot (January 18, 1793 – December 14, 1855) was a U.S. naval officer who served notably in the War of 1812, and commanded a ship during Commodore Perry's 1853-1854 visit to Japan. Commodore Joel Abbot was Admiral Matthew C. Perry's second in command when they opened Japan in 1853-1854.

John Proctor House (Westford, Massachusetts)

The John Proctor House is a historic house at 218 Concord Road in Westford, Massachusetts. It is one of the oldest houses in Westford. Its main block was probably built between 1720 and 1740 by John Proctor II, although deed evidence surrounding the house's construction is scanty. The main house is a two-story timber-frame structure with an asymmetrical facade, somewhat resembling a typical First Period half house (a two-story single-chamber block with a chimney on one side), although the chimney was removed in the 19th century. Most of the building's interior finishes date to the 1820s or 1830s. A two-story bay was added to the house's west side between 1830 and 1850, and a real ell added c. 1900.The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1993.

Lori Trahan

Lori A. Loureiro Trahan (born October 27, 1973) is an American businesswoman and politician who serves as the U.S. Representative for Massachusetts's 3rd congressional district, having been elected in November 2018. The district is located in the Merrimack Valley north of Boston and includes Lowell, Lawrence, and Haverhill. She previously served as chief of staff to former Representative Marty Meehan in Massachusetts's 5th congressional district.

Nabnasset, Massachusetts

Nabnasset is a village located in the northeastern portion of Westford, Massachusetts, between North Chelmsford, Tyngsboro, Graniteville and Westford Center.

The village is predominantly smaller homes near Nabnasset Lake, although there are no clear village boundaries.

The Nabnasset area of Westford MA is known of its schools of Nabnasset Grade School (Old Nab) and Nabnasset Elementary School (Nab). The area also contains Edward's Beach, a beach to Nabnasset Lake located on Williams Road and is free to Westford residents but will cost non-residents $5.00.

NetScout Systems

NETSCOUT Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: NTCT) is a provider of application and network performance management products. Headquartered in Westford, Massachusetts, NETSCOUT serves enterprises community, government agencies and telecommunications service providers.In July 2015, NETSCOUT acquired the communications business of Danaher Corporation, including Arbor Networks, Fluke Networks, Tektronix Communications and VSS Monitoring. NETSCOUT has subsidiaries in the Cayman Islands , a tax haven.

Nettie Stevens

Nettie Maria Stevens (July 7, 1861 – May 4, 1912) was an early American geneticist credited with the discovery of sex chromosomes. In 1905, soon after the rediscovery of Mendel's paper on genetics in 1900, she observed that male mealworms produced two kinds of sperm, one with a large chromosome and one with a small chromosome. When the sperm with the large chromosome fertilized eggs, they produced female offspring, and when the sperm with the small chromosome fertilized eggs, they produced male offspring. The pair of sex chromosomes that she studied later became known as the X and Y chromosomes.

Pat Bradley (golfer)

Pat Bradley (born March 24, 1951) is an American professional golfer. She became a member of the LPGA Tour in 1974 and won 31 tour events, including six major championships. Bradley is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame.

Westlawn Cemetery (Westford, Massachusetts)

Westlawn Cemetery is a historic cemetery on Concord Road at Country Road in Westford, Massachusetts. Established in 1761 as the West Burying Ground, it is one of the town's oldest cemeteries. It occupies a roughly triangular plot of 1.7 acres (0.69 ha). There are approximately 400 marked burials, generally laid out in rows running east-west. One of its most prominent burials is that of Colonel John Robinson, who led Westford's minutemen in the 1775 Battles of Lexington and Concord.The cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

Willard Hall

Willard Hall (December 24, 1780 – May 10, 1875), was a Delaware attorney and politician from Wilmington in New Castle County. He was a member of the Democratic-Republican Party, who served in the Delaware Senate, as a United States Representative from Delaware and as a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Delaware. He served as the first President of the Delaware Historical Society, was President of the state Bible society, and was instrumental in the formation of the Wilmington Savings Fund Society as a community bank, serving as its President for more than 40 years.

Municipalities and communities of Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
Major cities
Cities and towns
Cities and towns
Cities and towns

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