Fitchburg, Massachusetts: Wikis


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Fitchburg, Massachusetts
—  City  —
Coggshall Park in Autumn
Nickname(s): River City, The "Burg"
Location in Worcester County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°35′00″N 71°48′10″W / 42.5833333°N 71.80278°W / 42.5833333; -71.80278Coordinates: 42°35′00″N 71°48′10″W / 42.5833333°N 71.80278°W / 42.5833333; -71.80278
Country United States
State Massachusetts
County Worcester
Settled 1730
Incorporated 1764
 - Type Mayor-council city
 - Mayor Lisa Wong
 - City Council AT LARGE: Stephan Hay (President)
AT LARGE: Rosemary Reynolds
AT LARGE: Marcus DiNatale
AT LARGE: Thomas J. Conry, Jr.
AT LARGE: Dean A. Tran
WARD 1: David Clark
WARD 2: Norman L. Boisvert
WARD 3: Joel R. Kaddy
WARD 4: Kevin Starr
WARD 5: Joseph Solomito
WARD 6: Jody M. Joseph
 - Total 28.1 sq mi (72.7 km2)
 - Land 27.8 sq mi (71.9 km2)
 - Water 0.3 sq mi (0.8 km2)
Elevation 482 ft (143 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 39,102
 Density 1,408.5/sq mi (543.8/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 01420
Area code(s) 351 / 978
FIPS code 25-23875
GNIS feature ID 0617121

Fitchburg is the third largest city in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 39,102 at the 2000 census. Fitchburg is home to Fitchburg State College as well as 17 public and private elementary and high schools.



Fitchburg was first settled in 1730 and was officially incorporated in 1764. It is named for John Fitch, a settler. In 1748, Fitch and his family were abducted to Canada by Native Americans, but returned the next year.[citation needed]

Fitchburg is situated on both the Nashua River and a railroad line. The original Fitchburg Railroad ran through the Hoosac Tunnel, linking Boston and Albany, New York. The tunnel was built using the Burleigh Rock Drill, designed and built in Fitchburg. Fitchburg was a 19th century industrial center. Originally operated by water power, large mills produced machines, tools, clothing, paper, and firearms. The city is noted for its architecture, particularly in the Victorian style, built at the height of its mill town prosperity. As one of two shire towns The Northern Worcester County Registry of Deeds, established in 1903, and the county jail on Water Street were two county facilities located in Fitchburg.

The 1961 film Return to Peyton Place was filmed in Fitchburg.[1]


Fitchburg is located at 42°34′43″N 71°48′12″W / 42.57861°N 71.80333°W / 42.57861; -71.80333 (42.578689, -71.803383)[2].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 28.1 square miles (72.7 km²), of which, 27.8 square miles (71.9 km²) of it is land and 0.3 square miles (0.8 km²) of it (1.07%) is water. The city is drained by the Nashua River. Fitchburg is very hilly and is often referred to as the second hilliest city in the United States after San Francisco.



Fitchburg is divided into multiple different neighborhoods/villages including:

  • Cleghorn
  • Crockerville
  • East Fitchburg
  • Rollstone Hill
  • South Fitchburg
  • Tar Hill
  • The Patch
  • Watchusett Station
  • Waite's Corner
  • West Fitchburg


L.J. Brown Block in 1885

As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 39,102 people, 14,943 households, and 9,369 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,408.5 people per square mile (543.9/km²). There were 16,002 housing units at an average density of 576.4/sq mi (222.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.86% White, 3.65% African American, 0.35% Native American, 4.27% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 6.78% from other races, and 3.06% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14.97% of the population. 16.4% were of French, 12.4% French Canadian, 10.5% Italian, 9.8% Irish and 5.7% English ancestry according to Census 2000. 77.2% spoke English, 13.4% Spanish, 3.2% French and 1.9% Hmong as their first language.

There were 14,943 households out of which 31.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.1% were married couples living together, 14.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.3% were non-families. 30.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.13.

In the city the population was spread out with 25.8% under the age of 18, 11.6% from 18 to 24, 28.8% from 25 to 44, 19.2% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 91.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.7 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $37,004, and the median income for a family was $43,291. Males had a median income of $35,855 versus $26,558 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,256. About 12.1% of families and 15.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.1% of those under age 18 and 11.2% of those age 65 or over.


Post Office in c. 1910
County government: Worcester County
Clerk of Courts: Dennis P. McManus (D)
District Attorney: Joseph D. Early, Jr. (D)
Register of Deeds: Kathleen R. Daigneault (D)
Register of Probate: Stephen Abraham (D)
County Sheriff: Guy W. Glodis (D)
State government
State Representative(s): Stephen L. DiNatale (D)
State Senator(s): Jennifer L. Flanagan (D)
Governor's Councilor(s): Thomas J. Foley (D)
Federal government
U.S. Representative(s): John W. Olver (D-1st District),
U.S. Senators: John Kerry (D), Scott Brown (R)


Fitchburg has a rich football tradition, and every year its team plays cross-town rival Leominster in the Thanksgiving Day game, which is a proud member of a list of high school football rivalries in the United States.

State Normal School in c. 1920, now Fitchburg State College

Public Schools:

  • Goodrich School
  • Crocker Elementary School
  • McKay Elementary School
  • Reingold Elementary School
  • South Street Elementary School
  • North Central Charter Essential School
  • Museum Partnership School
  • Arthur M. Longsjo Jr. Middle School
  • Memorial Middle School
  • B.F Brown Middle School (Closed 2009)
  • Fitchburg High School
  • Fitchburg Evening Alternative High School
  • Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School, also called Monty Tech
Fitchburg State College's Hammond Building

Private Schools:



Transportation for Fitchburg is largely supplied by the Montachusett Regional Transit Authority (MART). MART has 4 bus routes in Fitchburg, two of which overlap into Leominster.[4]

The MBTA operates a commuter train to Boston's North Station. The commuter rail stop serving Fitchburg is the Fitchburg stop on the Fitchburg Line.

Fitchburg Municipal Airport, located on the border of Fitchburg and Leominster, serves as the air hub of Fitchburg.


Main Street, looking east, in c. 1912

* Throughout the early Twentieth Century, Fitchburg was known for its paper industry which occupied the banks of the Nashua River and employed a large segment of the European immigrant population. It has been noted by many residents in Fitchburg, that the Nashua river would be dyed the color the paper mills had been coloring the paper that day.




  • Fitchburg Access Television


  • WPKZ, AM-1280


Amateur racer in the Fitchburg Longsjo Classic, 2006.

Fitchburg's cultural highlights include:

Use in popular culture

In the fictional Harry Potter universe, Fitchburg is the hometown of the professional Quidditch team the Fitchburg Finches.[5]

Notable residents

Nixey Callahan baseball card

Sister cities

Fitchburg has four sister cities, as designated by Sister Cities International:


  1. ^
  2. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2005-05-03. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  3. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  4. ^ MART system Map & Schedule, Fitchburg/Leominster
  5. ^ Whisp, Kennilworthy (2001). Quidditch Through the Ages. WhizzHard Books. pp. 31–46. ISBN 1551924544. 

External links


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