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flag  History of Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

Journey back in time to Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

Visit Lowell, Massachusetts, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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Lowell, Massachusetts, USA - Ayers Cherry Pectoral, for the cure of coughs, colds, asthma, croup, bronchitis, whooping-cough, and consumption Prepared by Dr. J. C. Ayer & Co.,

Lowell, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA

Lowell owes its name to Francis Cabot Lowell of Boston, from whom towns in Maine, Michigan and North Carolina were also named.
How New England Towns Received Their Names
The Day
New London, Connecticut
October 21, 1914

Fun fact: Lowell is known as the place where the American Industrial Revolution began.

Lowell includes: Belvidere, Bleachery Station, Centralville, Highlands, Little Canada, Middlesex Village, Oaklands, Pawtucketville, Rogers Square, Wigginville, and Ayers City.



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There is MUCH more to discover about Lowell, Massachusetts, USA. Read on!

Lowell Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

Ayer's Cherry Pectoral,
for the cure of coughs, colds, asthma, croup, bronchitis, whooping-cough, a
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Ayer's Cherry Pectoral,
for the cure of coughs, colds, asthma, croup, bronchitis, whooping-cough, and consumption
Prepared by Dr. J. C. Ayer & Co., Lowell, Mass., U.S.A.
Hood's Sarsaparilla
C. I. Hood Co.
Lowell, Mass., U.S.A.
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Hood's Sarsaparilla
C. I. Hood Co.
Lowell, Mass., U.S.A.
1880s
Allen's Root Beer Extract
Charles E. Carter
Lowell, Mass.
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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1880s
Allen's Root Beer Extract
Charles E. Carter
Lowell, Mass.
Hoyt's German Cologne
E. W. Hoyt & Co.
Lowell, Mass.
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Hoyt's German Cologne
E. W. Hoyt & Co.
Lowell, Mass.
Stamped Shawknit on the Toe
Knitted to the Shape of the Human Foot

Shaw Stocking Co., Lowell, Ma
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Stamped Shawknit on the Toe
Knitted to the Shape of the Human Foot

Shaw Stocking Co., Lowell, Mass.

The Ladies' Home Journal
March 1898
Rubifoam is a cleansing, fragrant, antiseptic, liquid dentifrice, entirely free from grit or acid.
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Rubifoam is a cleansing, fragrant, antiseptic, liquid dentifrice, entirely free from grit or acid.

E. W. Hoyt & Co.
Lowell, Mass.

The Ladies' Home Journal
April 1898
Lowell Depot and Richardson Hotel
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Lowell Depot and Richardson Hotel
B. & M. Station, Lowell, Mass.
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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B. & M. Station, Lowell, Mass.
Vesper Boat Houses (1910)
Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

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Vesper Boat Houses (1910)

Discover Lowell: History, News, Travel, and Stories

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1822 - Began as Factory Town
Lowell set up as factory town

www.e-referencedesk.com/ resources/state-history-timeline/ massachusetts.html
1836 - Lowell is incorporated as a city

Massachusetts City and Town Incorporation and Settlement Dates
1839 - Lowell
Lowell, Massachusetts
Middlesex county. county town.—This city, the American Mancester, is remarkable for the extent of its water power, its rapid growth, and the height to which it has raised the American character by the perfection of its manufactures.

Lowell has risen to eminence by the remarkable energy and skill of a few individuals; among whom Patrick T. Jackson, Esq. of Boston, and the late Kirk Boot, Esq. were distinguished.

It lies on the S. side of Merrimack river, below Pawtucket falls, and at the union of Concord river with the Merrimack.

In 1815, the site where the city stands was a wilderness, with the exception of a few lonely dwellings. In 1824, Lowell, then a part of Chelmsford, was incorporated as a town. In 1835, it became a city. Lowell is situated 25 miles N. from Boston, 14 N.N.E. from Concord, 37 N.E. from Worcester, and 38 S.S.E. from Concord, N.H. Population, 1830, 6,474; 1837, 18,010.

The hydraulic power of this place is produced by a canal, of a ... Read MORE...

1841 - An amusing incident occurred last night at the Lowell Museum, which is well worth noticing...
Two Irishmen from among the spectators went up on the stage to aid the magician in his performances. In one of the feats it became necessary for one of them to drink a glass of wine. This, however, they both resolutely refused to do. Mr. Young not knowing the ground of their objection we presume, urged them, but without effect. No argument could persuade them to touch one drop of the wine, though on that account the "trick" would fail. The scene was very amusing and drew marks of approbation from the spectators.
Newburyport Herald
Newburyport, Massachusetts
July 20, 1841
1845 - LOWELL.
Inc. as a town, 1822, as a city, 1836.
Population in 1840, 20,796

Lowell, originally an Indian settlement called Wamesit, was annexed to Chelmsford in 1726. With a part of Chelmsford it was named Lowell, in 1822, in honor of the Hon. John Lowell of Roxbury; and, finally, it was made a city, in 1836.

A village of Tewkesbury, called Belvidere, has recently been annexed to Lowell.

This city owes its greatness to a few Boston merchants, who established cotton manufactories here in 1820.

It is built on the bank of the Merrimack, but the great water power is obtained by carrying a wide and deep canal around the falls of the river, which have a descent of about 32 feet at this place, into Concord River.

A large portion of this rapidly increasing city depends upon the numerous factories ; but for good order, means of education, and religion, Lowell is equal to any manufacturing place in the world.

The chief manufactures are cotton and woollen goods, but carpeting, powder,... Read MORE...

1846 - February 21 - 1st US woman telegrapher, Sarah G Bagley, Lowell, Mass

historyorb.com
1848 - Lowell
The city of Lowell is now a part of the land granted for a town, called Wamesit, by the general court to the Pawtucket Indians, once the most powerful tribe north of the Massachusetts. The historian Gookin states that "the tribe was almost wholly destroyed by the sickness in 1612 and '13; and at this day (1674) there are not above two hundred and fifty men, besides women and children. What that disease was, that so generally and mortally swept away these and other Indians in New England, I cannot learn. Doubtless it was some pestilential disease. I have discoursed with some Indians, that were then youths, who say 'that their bodies were exceeding yellow before, and after they died,' describing it by a yellow garment they showed me." The following account of Wamesit is from Gookin's Historical account of the Indians.

"Wamesit is the fifth praying town; and this place is situated upon the Merrimac river, being a neck of land where Concord river falleth into Merrimac river. It is... Read MORE...

1853 - Destructive Fires in Lowell-Merrimack Mill Burnt.
A slip from the office of the Lowell Vox Populi states that a destructive fire occurred at Mechanics' Mills, in that city on Wednesday night, which destroyed property to the amount of from $12,000 to $15,000. The parties who suffered by the fire were WEBSTER & LEWIS, sash and blind makers; BROOKS & TYLER, stable keepers; ISAAC PLACE, sash and blind dealer; GEORGE FISKE, store-house for bobbins; CHARLES A. DURGIN, manufacturer of sewing machines; MICHAEL COMSTOCK, machinist, and JOHN PETTENGILL, carpenter. The heaviest loss falls upon the mechanics who occupied the building, and whose tools and stock were generally destroyed. There was no insurance upon the property. The fire is believed to have been the work of an incendiary.
Another and still more destructive fire occurred on Thursday morning of which Vox Populi gives the following account:

"Between 7 and 7½ o'clock this morning, while the operatives were out to breakfast, fire was discovered in the carding room of No.1 Mill of... Read MORE...

1854 - Lowell
Lowell, a city and one of the capitals of Essex county, Massachusetts, is situated on the right bank of the Merrimack where it receives the Concord river, and at the terminus of five railroads, which communicate with the principal cities on the seaboard, and with various sections of the interior, 25 miles N. by W. from Boston. Lat. 42° 38' 40" N., Lon. 71° 19' 2" W. In the extent and variety of its manufactures this city may be regarded as without a rival in the United States. The site has many inequalities of surface, but is regularly laid out with streets intersecting each other at right angles. In different sections are two public squares. The one in the southern part of the city, called South Square, has an ample area, which is being graded and beautifully ornamented. The private edifices are for the most part spacious and elegant ; those occupied as boarding-houses for the 15,000 operatives employed in the mills, will compare favorably with the better class of residences in other ... Read MORE...

1860 - DESTRUCTIVE FIRE IN LOWELL.
A portion of Whipple's Mill, Lowell, was destroyed by fire on Thursday night. The fire broke out in the card room of of Messers. A. & J. Cowley, manufactures of cotton and woolen goods, and the flames spread with considerable rapidity. The loss was from $10,000 to $12,000. Among the losers are O. M. Whipple, who owned the building; insured in the Home Office, New York, for $25,000, which covers his loss. The Messrs. Cowley, manufacturers of woolen goods, loss $3000 or $4000, insured for $2000 in the England office, Hartford. Geo. Naylor, carper manufacturer, loss $4000. C. R. Little, dyer and finisher, not very heavy, insured for $300 in the Dorchester Company. About seventy or eighty persons are thrown out of employment.
The Farmers' Cabinet
Amherst, New Hampshire
November 30, 1860
1868 - Large Fire and Loss of Life in Lowell, Mass.
LOWELL, Mass., Saturday, Nov. 21. A fire at Nos. 96 and 98 Merrimack-street, this morning, badly damaged the building, which is owned by JOHN NESMITH; destroyed S. R. FLETCHER'S bonnet bleachery, and damaged the boot and shoe stock of ELDRIDGE DEARBORN. The loss is $3,000 or $4,000. The property was partially insured. Three persons, who lodged in the upper stories, were suffocated, but not burned. Their names are MICHAEL B. GAFFNEY, aged 20 years, a temporary lodger; SYRIL SHACKNORD, aged 15, recently from Ellsworth, Me.; and a stranger, supposed to be GEORGE MANARY, a jeweler, recently from Boston.

The New York Times
New York, New York
November 22, 1868
1890 Lowell Massachusetts
LOWELL is a splendid industrial city on the Merrimack River, in the northeasterly section of Middlesex County, 9 miles above Lawrence, and 35 from the mouth of the river. It is bounded on the northwest, north and northeast by Dracut, on the east by Tewksbury, on the south and west by Chelmsford.

The assessed area is 5,927 acres, including 935 acres of woodland. It is 26 miles northwest of Boston by the Boston and Maine Railroad, whose various branches give convenient connection in every direction. The post-offices are Lowell and Middlesex Village; the other villages being Belvidere, Bleachery, Centralville, Highlands, Meadowville and Pawtucketville.

The Merrimack River makes a graceful bend towards the northeast and then towards the southeast in passing through and by the city; receiving in the eastern section the waters of the Concord River, which here affords valuable motive power by three falls of 26, 8 and 10 feet respectively. River-Meadow Brook, which rises in Westford,... Read MORE...

1895 - Lowell
Lowell, a city of Massachusetts, and one of the capitals of Middlesex co., is situated on the Merrimac River, at the mouth of the Concord, 25 miles N. by W. of Boston, Lat. 42° 38'46" N.; lon. 71°19' 2" W. It is the third city of the state in population. The site is uneven and picturesque, and "from the heights of Belvidere, on the right bank of the river, the whole panorama of the city, the long, curving line of the Merrimac, the distant peaks of Wachusett, and the New Hampshire mountains, come grandly into view." The city is chiefly on the S. side of the Merrimac though some large establishments are situated on the N. The streets are regularly laid out and well paved; the city is lighted chiefly by electric lights. The principal public institutions and edifices are a new city hall (18'), erected at a cost of $300,000; a memorial building ($150,000), a new high-school building ($150,000), a court-house: 43 churches, a free library and reading-room with 40,000 volumes, a mechanics'... Read MORE...

1899 - SHOPLIFTER CAPTURED
Lowell, Mass., April 9. - Mary Kershaw, the alleged notorious shoplifted, whose default was announced in Boston about three weeks ago, where she was out on bail, was captured in this city by Inspectors Laflamme and Allen Saturday morning. There are four charges of larceny against her in this city.
The Portsmouth Herald
Portsmouth, New Hampshire
April 10, 1899
1903 - SERIOUS FIRE IN LOWELL. Merrimack Print Works Damaged to the Extent of $200,000.
LOWELL, Mass., July 18. - For a long time to-night the Merrimack Print Works here were in danger of complete destruction by a fire which had broken out in the company's immense coal sheds. The print works escaped the fire, but it is likely that they will not be able to resume operations for a considerable length of time by reason of the wrecking of the steam power plant of the company. The financial loss is estimated at $200,000.

At one time the fire worked itself to the corporation's immense storehouse, in which finished goods worth about half a million were stored, but the city firemen saved this structure and also No. 5 Mill adjacent. The coal sheds were of heavy wooden construction and well filled with coal. The boiler house also contained the economizers of the entire plant. The other mills of the company, which are independent of the print works, will be able to run by water power.
The New York Times
New York, New York
July 19, 1903
1915 - Lowell Loses Memorial Hall. $100,000 Fire in Lowell
Fire started at noon yesterday in the Memorial Hall Building, Lowell. A geenral [sic] alarm called out every piece of fire fighting apparatus in the city, but the building was almost wholly destroyed despite the efforts of the firemen. Three firemen were painfully cut by falling slates when the roof fell in, the damage is estimated at $100,000.

Memorial Hall was built twenty-two years ago at a cost of $150,000, exclusive of furnishings. The top floor of the three-story building, which was built of granite, was used as a headquarters and museum by the Grand Army and the Spanish War Veterans. In the museum were the flags of the famous Sixth Massachusetts Regiment, which was mobbed while on its way through Baltimore enroute to the Civil War battlefields. The uniforms worn by the first two men to be killed in the war were also stored there. The Public Library, on the second floor, was considered one of the best in the State. More than 100,000 books were destroyed.
Boston Morning Journal
Boston, Massachusetts
March 2, 1915
1916
Lowell, a oity of Massachusetts and one of the capitals of Middlesex co., is situated on the Merrimac River, at the mouth of the Concord, 25 miles NW. of Boston, on the New York, New Haven and Hartford and the Boston and Maine Rs. Lat.42° 39' N. : Lon. 71° 19' W. The site is uneven and picturesque, and from the heights of Belvidere, on the right bank of the river, the whole panorama of the city, the long, curving line of the Merrimac, the distant peaks of Wachusett and the New Hampshire mountains, come grandly into view." The city, in the centre of which is Monument Square with the city-hall and Memorial Hall, is chiefly on the S. side of the Merrimac. Among its educational institutions are a public library of over 60,000 volumes, a state normal school, the Lowell Textile School, and Roger Hall School. Its charitable institutions comprise various hospitals, the Theodore Edson Orphanage, etc. The prosperity of Lowell is mainly derived from manufactures of cotton and woollen goods and... Read MORE...

2023 - Here's a list of some of the best places to go and things to do in Lowell:
Lowell National Historical Park:

Start your exploration of Lowell at the National Historical Park, where you can learn about the city's role in the Industrial Revolution. The Boott Cotton Mills Museum provides insight into the textile industry, and the park offers guided tours and canal boat rides.

Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell:

Check the schedule for events at the Tsongas Center, a multi-purpose arena on the campus of UMass Lowell. It hosts concerts, sporting events, and other entertainment throughout the year.

Whistler House Museum of Art:

Art enthusiasts should visit the Whistler House Museum, which showcases the works of American artist James McNeill Whistler. The museum also features rotating exhibits of contemporary and historical art.

Lowell Folk Festival:

If you happen to be in Lowell in late July, don't miss the Lowell Folk Festival, one of the largest free folk festivals in the United States. Enjoy live music, traditional crafts, and diverse food... Read MORE...

Discover MY Roots: Lowell Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Lowell, Massachusetts, USA

We currently have information about 224 ancestors who were born or died in Lowell.

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Genealogy Resources for Lowell

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Updated: 9/30/2023 12:46:29 PM