County Map Project
Links updated February
|As of August, 1997,
Massachusetts is my seventh home state. For our first five
years, we rented a very lovely home in the center of
Bridgewater from a retired BSC professor and his wife. From
this home, shown in this aerial
photograph, we could walk to work, to church, and to
many other places on a daily basis. It was truly a
delightful spot! In 2002, we finally bought the first house
of our very own. It is even closer to campus, and has its
own web page.
I have not found it yet, but according to Zippy the Pinhead, Boston is home to a unique -- and somewhat disturbing -- statue of Mickey Mouse as a lobster.
Ironically -- since I run a county-map page -- in my
adopted home state of Massachusetts counties are of almost
no practical importance. On highways, town boundaries are
clearly marked, but county-line markers are an
afterthought, if they exist at all. In fact, the abolition
counties has begun in various ways. Each of the 351 towns
and cities of Massachusetts has a separate
government, most operated by direct democracy in the form
of the traditional New
England town meeting. This form of direct democracy
is charming, ineffecient, and unlikely to change in my
Living just outside of the Hub of the Universe - Boston, that is - I have found the You Might Be from Boston page to be especially useful.The Davis Family Farm is the best place in Massachusetts to take children for an outing. It features a combination of excellent children's educational activities and a very important livestock conservation program. It is one of the few child-oriented places I have visited that also pays adequate attention to the comfort of the adults who come along. The farm includes a small maze, and across the street is a world-class field maze. Information about both is available on the web site.
If -- like me -- you are a former Southwesternerner looking for real (that is, spicy) food in Massachusetts, give Firefly's a try!
|Finally! Timothy Noah of
Slate.com debunks the myth
Taxachusetts. In fact, Massachusetts is dead-last in
funding for public higher education
and my own town of Bridgewater is so anti-tax that it has
nearly killed its library!
Unfortunately, Trashachusett may be a more apt name for this otherwise lovely place, and so, too, may be Crashachusetts.
|One of my first explorations in Massachusetts -- and
neighboring Rhode Island -- was a HumPhy field trip
to the Blackstone
Valley , and I have enjoyed returning with my family
on several occasions. (HumPhy is an autumn tradition in
our geography program. It is an exploration of a local
area from both HUMan and PHYsical geographic perspectives.
Faculty and upper-division geography students are
In both 1998 and 2000, HumPhy was on Cape Cod. Dr. Domingo created an excellent HumPhy 2000 web page, with lovely and fun photos from the Outer Cape.
One very interesting aspect of the Southeastern Massachusetts environment is the annual migration of anadromous fish. The term "herring run" refers both to the migration and to the physical structures that have been built in many places to facilitate the migration around human-made structures (mostly small dams that provided power to New Englands mills in an earlier time). The Weymouth Herring Run is one such structure.
The Mapparium is one of Boston's great treasures!The official site of The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is full of great information. You can even make your own maps or download mapping data from MassGIS.
provides links to historic sites to in and around Boston.
So far, I have visited the counties shown in yellow. In August
2001, I visited the charming island of Nantucket, making
Massachusetts the eighth state in which I have visited all of the
counties. Nantucket is the only jurisdiction in which the name of
a town, a county, and an island all coincide. We are fortunate to
have friends with a moderately-priced guest house on this
increasingly expensive island, where some rooms rent for up to
$8,000 per night!
Here's a funny page about Massachusetts linguistic geography: How to Pronounce Massachusetts Town Namesorcestermass. It begins with the author's home town, "WOO-STAH."
Learn about the local Cape Cod school that is erecting its own wind
turbine! Beyond teaching about sustainable energy, some
officials hope the wind-power industry will keep the next
generation working in town.
I have been to 14 out of 14 counties in Massachusetts.
For really good maps and images, visit Color Landform Atlas: Massachusetts .
Explore the rest of the County Map Project or my extensive environmental geography web site.