Franklin, Massachusetts: Wikis


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Franklin, Massachusetts
—  City  —
Location in Norfolk County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°05′00″N 71°23′50″W / 42.0833333°N 71.39722°W / 42.0833333; -71.39722
Country United States
State Massachusetts
County Norfolk
Settled 1660
Incorporated 1778
 - Type Council-manager
 - Town
Jeff Nutting
 - Total 27.0 sq mi (70.0 km2)
 - Land 26.7 sq mi (69.3 km2)
 - Water 0.3 sq mi (0.7 km2)
Elevation 300 ft (91 m)
Population (2009)
 - Total 32,878
 - Density 1,231.4/sq mi (475.4/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 02038
Area code(s) 508 / 774
FIPS code 25-25100
GNIS feature ID 0611686

The Town of Franklin is a city[1] in Norfolk County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 29,560 at the 2000 census.



Franklin was first settled by Europeans in 1660 and was officially incorporated in 1778. The city is also home to the birth place of America's father of public education, Horace Mann. Franklin is home to what may be the nation's oldest continuously operational one-room school house (Croydon, NH's school dates to 1780, but there is debate as to whether it is truly "one room"). The Red Brick School was started in 1792 and the building was constructed in 1833[2] and was operational until 2008. St. Mary's Catholic church, located in central Franklin, is the largest Catholic parish in the Boston Archdiocese with some 15,000 members.


Franklin is located at 42°5′21″N 71°24′25″W / 42.08917°N 71.40694°W / 42.08917; -71.40694 (42.089104, -71.406909).[3]

According to the United States Census Bureau the town has a total area of 27.0 square miles (70 km2), of which 26.7 square miles (69 km2) is land and 0.3 square miles (0.78 km2) (1.00%) is water.

Most of Franklin lies within the Charles River watershed. Principal streams include Mine Brook, Shepard's Brook, Miller Brook, Uncas Brook, Dix Brook and Miscoe Brook. Much of the marshland along Mine Brook has been permanently protected by the Natural Valley Storage Project of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The extreme southwest corner of Franklin is part of the Blackstone River watershed. The town has an impounded series of lakes known as the the Franklin Reservoir, but not used as a public drinking water supply. The lakes are now protected open space donated to the town by the late Ernest DelCarte. Beaver Pond also is a municipal recreation area and includes an artificial turf playing and recreation field, and playground. In the summer, it is a popular spot for swimming and fishing. The beach is also used for volleyball games. Significant public forests and parks include the Franklin State Forest, off Grove Street, the Franklin Town Forest, off Summer Street.


As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 29,560 people, 10,152 households, and 7,877 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,105.4 inhabitants per square mile (426.8 /km2). There were 10,327 housing units at an average density of 386.2 per square mile (149.1 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.95% White, 1.08% African American, 0.15% Native American, 1.66% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.29% from other races, and 0.84% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.08% of the population.

There were 10,152 households out of which 44.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 66.4% were married couples living together, 8.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.4% were non-families. 18.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.85 and the average family size was 3.29.

In the city the population was spread out with 30.3% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 35.1% from 25 to 44, 19.9% from 45 to 64, and 8.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 96.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $71,174, and the median income for a family was $81,826 (these figures had risen to $89,659 and $101,900, respectively, as of a 2008 estimate[5]). Males had a median income of $58,888 versus $36,557 for females. The per capita income for the town was $27,849. About 2.2% of families and 2.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.8% of those under age 18 and 5.2% of those age 65 or over.

Dean College is also located in the town. The town is represented in the Massachusetts General Court by Representative Jim Vallee and Senators Scott Brown and Karen Spilka.


The Franklin Public Schools serve over 6000 students in six elementary schools, three middle schools, and one high school. Franklin is also home to one regional vo-tech high school and one Charter School (Grades K - 8).

The elementary schools are John F. Kennedy Elementary School, Jefferson Elementary School, Oak Street Elementary School, Gerald M. Parmenter Elementary School, Helen Keller Elementary School, and Davis Thayer Elementary School. The Red Brick School is a historic school in Franklin, Massachusetts. It was strictly for kindergarten students and was one of the longest running one-room schools in America.

The middle schools are Annie Sullivan Middle School, Remington Middle School, and Horace Mann Middle School. All of the Franklin middle schools share a building with at least one other school. Annie Sullivan shares with Helen Keller Elementary, Remington with Jefferson Elementary, and Horace Mann shares with Oak Street Elementary school and the Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC).

Franklin High School is home of the Panthers, Franklin's mascot. Franklin High School has approximately 1800 students.

The other two public schools located in Franklin are the Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School, and the Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School. Both of these schools operate independently of the Franklin Public Schools.

The quality of Franklin Public Schools is part of the reason that "Family Circle Magazine" named Franklin as one of the top ten towns in the United States to raise a family. Franklin High School is expected to be renovated soon.

Franklin is also home to Dean College. Dean, founded in 1865, is a private residential college with about 1,100 students. The college grants associate degrees in a number of subjects (98% of the students are accepted for transfer to four year schools); but also offers two bachelor's programs in Dance and Arts and Entertainment Management; as well as bachelor's degrees in conjunction with Boston-based Suffolk University. Dean also offers an extensive continuing education program.


Franklin boasts many sports teams. For public recreation, Franklin offers baseball, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey, ice hockey, track and field, football, flag football, basketball, metro basketball, softball, Babe Ruth baseball, and wrestling. There are many trails for recreational hiking and some trails in the Franklin State Forest are approved for non-motorized mountain biking.

Points of interest

The Franklin Public Library is an excellent place to begin exploring Franklin. It may be the first public library in America. It is a lovely 1904 building with granite and marble staircases, frescoed walls in the reading room and houses the original books donated by Benjamin Franklin. Across the street from the library is Dean College, with Gothic architecture and a historic old gymnasium.

According to a survey of the center of Franklin done for the Historical Commission of the town, the Franklin Common Historic District includes 74 historical contributing buildings. The oldest house dates to 1780 and was moved to Union Street in 1840. The next oldest house was built in 1830. There are 32 buildings that were built before 1900. The former Town Hall on West Central Street was built in 1842.

At one end of Franklin's Historic District is the little Red Brick School. This one room classroom, believed to be one of the oldest still functioning as a public school in the United States, celebrated its 175th birthday in 2008.

The Franklin Town Common features a gazebo, and several dedications located around the common.The brick bandstand on the Town Common was dedicated in 1917 and contributed by the Hayward family. Concerts and a Fourth of July celebration are held on the Common each summer. The Feast of St Rocco, a four day family festival is held each year in mid-August. There are amusement rides, live entertainment, delicious Italian food, and lots more.

Downtown there are a series of restaurants and bars. The street lines on Union Street used to be painted red, white, and green to reflect the extensive Italian heritage in the city. The Zeotrope was an old fashioned movie theater that was a trademark of Franklin lore until it was torn down.

The Franklin School for the Performing Arts is an anchor in downtown, catering to over 1,000 students in dance, music and theater. Their Electric Youth troupe tours Europe every other year. At Beaver Pond, there is an astro-turf playing and recreation field, and playground. In the summer, it is a popular spot for swimming and fishing. The beach is also used for volleyball games.

The town also contains remnants of its Industrial Revolution background. Until recently, abandoned mills existed along the railroad tracks. One old mill building was turned into residential condos and a nearby building consists of a variety of multiple-use commercial businesses, including the Franklin Mill Store.The Brookdale Mill on the other side of Franklin was converted into Incontro, an upscale restaurant.A fourth mill on Hayward street was converted to upscale shopping.


Commuter rail service from Boston's South Station is provided by the MBTA with the Forge Park/495 and Franklin stops on its Franklin Line.

Franklin, and the surrounding towns also have a bus system, that is part of the GATRA bus authority. The bus route features many stops around the town, including the Municipal Building, Senior Center, Franklin Public Library and The Franklin Village Shopping center.


The city of Franklin is located in Norfolk County. Unlike the municipalities of Barnstable, Essex, Hampden, Nantucket (coextensive with its namesake county), Plymouth, and Worcester, all of which are located in the similarly-named county, Franklin, MA is not located in Franklin County. It is approximately 60 mi/100 km, south-east to north-west, 'as the crow flies' between Franklin, MA and the closest point in Franklin County, MA.

Notable residents

Unless otherwise noted, individuals are current residents of Franklin.


External links


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

FRANKLIN, a township of Norfolk county, Massachusetts, U.S.A., with an area of 2 9 sq. m. of rolling surface. Pop. (1900) 5017, of whom 1250 were foreign-born; (1905, state census) 5244; (1910 census) 5641. The principal village, also named Franklin, is about 27 m. S.W. of Boston, and is served by the New York, New Haven & Hartford railway. Franklin has a public library (housed in the Ray memorial building and containing 7700 volumes in 1910) and is the seat of Dean Academy (Universalist; founded in 1865), a secondary school for boys and girls. Straw goods, felt, cotton and woollen goods, pianos and printing presses are manufactured here. The township was incorporated in 1778, previous to which it was a part of Wrentham (1673). It was the first of the many places in the United States named in honour of Benjamin Franklin (who later contributed books for the public library). Horace Mann was born here.

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