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Dunstable, Massachusetts
—  Town  —
Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°40′30″N 71°29′00″W / 42.675°N 71.4833333°W / 42.675; -71.4833333
Country United States
State Massachusetts
County Middlesex
Settled 1656
Incorporated 1673
 - Type Open town meeting
 - Total 16.7 sq mi (43.4 km2)
 - Land 16.6 sq mi (42.9 km2)
 - Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
Elevation 224 ft (68 m)
Population (2007)
 - Total 3,290
 - Density 198.2/sq mi (76.7/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 01827
Area code(s) 351 / 978
FIPS code 25-17825
GNIS feature ID 0618222

Dunstable (DUN-stah-ble) is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 2,826 at the 2000 census.



Dunstable was first settled in 1656 and was officially incorporated in 1673. It is likely named after the town of Dunstable in Bedfordshire, England, United Kingdom, home of Edward Tyng, the town's first settler. The original township of Dunstable, granted in 1661, consisted of two hundred square miles, including the towns of Dunstable, Tyngsborough, Massachusetts, Pepperell, Massachusetts,Townsend, Massachusetts,Hudson, New Hampshire,Nashua, New Hampshire, Hollis, New Hampshire, and parts of other towns as well. Increases in population leading to subsections becoming independent towns and the solidification of the Northern boundary of Massachusetts in 1740 shrunk the town down to what remains today.

Today, Dunstable, in the face of urban sprawl, has held onto a largely rural character.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 16.7 square miles (43.4 km²), of which, 16.5 square miles (42.9 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.5 km²) of it (1.13%) is water. Dunstable borders Pepperell to the west, Groton to the south, Tyngsborough to the east, and Nashua and Hollis, New Hampshire to the north.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 2,826 people, 923 households, and 798 families residing in the town. The population density was 171.0 people per square mile (66.0/km²). There were 944 housing units at an average density of 57.0/sq mi (22.0/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 97.49% White, 0.11% African American, 0.04% Native American, 1.52% Asian, 0.07% from other races, and 0.78% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.53% of the population.

There were 923 households out of which 47.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 76.7% were married couples living together, 7.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 13.5% were non-families. 10.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 3.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.07 and the average family size was 3.31.

In the town the population was spread out with 31.1% under the age of 18, 4.4% from 18 to 24, 31.4% from 25 to 44, 26.2% from 45 to 64, and 6.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 97.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.3 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $86,633, and the median income for a family was $92,270. Males had a median income of $61,425 versus $39,946 for females. The per capita income for the town was $30,608. About 2.1% of families and 1.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.4% of those under age 18 and 2.1% of those age 65 or over.


Dunstable has one elementary school, Swallow Union Elementary, located in town while middle school and high school students attend regional schools in neighboring Groton. The school system is the Groton-Dunstable Regional School District.

Points of interest

  • "The Little Red Schoolhouse" is a historical building located on route 113 near the Tyngsboro border. Local students take field trips there to historically re-enact a school day. An annual Strawberry Festival is also held there. Boy Scout Troop 28 of Dunstable holds a Mother’s Day pancake breakfast there every year.
  • The "Sarah R S Roby" Town Hall in located at 511 Main St (Rt. 113) was built in 1909 and renovated in 2003. Most town offices are located here as well as meeting rooms for various meetings and events.
  • The Town Commons across from the Dunstable Town Hall on Rt. 113 is the site of many town events including the Summer Fest Carnival sponsored by the Dunstable-Tyngsboro Lion's Club in June, the summer "Concerts on the Common" live performance series and the Grange Fair in August.
  • The Dunstable Evangelical Congregational Church is located at 518 Main St, adjacent to the Town Commons and directly across from Town Hall. While the congregation was established in that location in 1831, the current building dates from the early 1900s. Because it is the only church in town, it is often called simply "the Dunstable Church".
  • The Dunstable Free Library is located at 588 Main St. In addition to the collection of books, periodicals, movies, children’s activities and historic items, it is the site of many community activities as well as the site for town elections.

Notable residents


  • Dunstable is a dry town. No liquor is sold in either of the town's two small grocery stores.
  • The town hall once housed both Police Department and Library, though recent renovations in the town gave construct to dedicated buildings for each.


Further reading

External links



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