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Northampton, Massachusetts Area - Total - Land - Water Elevation 35.6 sq mi (92.2 km2) 34.5 sq mi (89.3 km2) 1.1 sq mi (3.0 km2) 140 ft (43 m)
Population (2000) 28,978 - Total 841.0/sq mi (324.7/km2) - Density Time zone - Summer (DST) ZIP code Area code(s)
Northampton, Massachusetts Main Street
Eastern (UTC-5) Eastern (UTC-4) 01060 413 25-46330 0606674 http://www.northamptonma.gov/
FIPS code GNIS feature ID Website
Nickname(s): Hamp, NoHo, NTown Motto: caritas, educatio, justitia
Northampton is a city in Hampshire County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 28,978 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Hampshire County. It is nicknamed The Paradise City. Northampton is part of the Springfield, Massachusetts Metropolitan Statistical Area.
The area now known as Northampton was named Norwottuck, or Nonotuck, meaning "the mist of the river" by Native Americans. In 1653, land was purchased from the native inhabitants making up the bulk of modern Northampton. Colonial Northampton was founded in 1654 by settlers from Springfield, Massachusetts. Northampton’s territory would be enlarged beyond the original settlement, but later the outer portions would be carved up into separate cities and towns. Southampton was incorporated in 1775, including parts of the modern territories of Montgomery (which was itself incorporated in 1780) and Easthampton. Westhampton was incorporated in 1778, and Easthampton in 1809. A part of Northampton known as Smith’s Ferry was separated from the rest of the town by Easthampton, and the shortest path to downtown was on a road near the Connecticut River oxbow, which was subject to frequent
Location in Hampshire County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°19′30″N 72°38′30″W / 42.325°N 72.64167°W / 42.325; -72.64167 Country State County Settled and Charter granted Incorporated as a city Government - Type - Mayor United States Massachusetts Hampshire 1654 1884
Mayor-council city Mary Clare Higgins
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flooding. The neighborhood was ceded to Holyoke, Massachusetts in 1909. Initial cooperation between the settlers and the Natives gave way to conflict, evidence of which can today be seen most clearly in nearby Historic Deerfield. Northampton hosted its own witch trials in the 18th century, although no alleged witches were executed. Members of the community were present at the Constitutional Convention.
extant opera house, the Academy of Music, which functioned as an independent movie house until recently. However, the 800 seat theatre now operates as a venue for rent for local and other productions. In 1851, opera singer Jenny Lind, the "Swedish Nightingale", declared Northampton to be the "Paradise of America." The first game of women’s basketball was played in 1892 at Smith College. Immigrant groups that settled here in large numbers included Irish, Polish, and French-Canadian. Former President Calvin Coolidge retired to Northampton upon leaving the White House in 1929, and died there on January 5, 1933. Northampton today is a popular destination for tourists, who come to sample the city’s shopping and restaurants. Since 1995 the city has been home to the biannual Paradise City Arts Festival, held at the Three County Fairgrounds on Memorial Day Weekend and Columbus Day Weekend. The Festival is ranked the #1 arts fair in America, and is a national juried showcase for contemporary craft and fine art. It is an open and tolerant community, and is home to a sizable lesbian community. Northampton is also home to a vibrant music scene. This is the result of music venues such as the Calvin Theater, Pines Theater, Pearl Street, Iron Horse Music Hall, The Elevens, and The Academy of Music. Musicians and bands that refer to the Northampton area as "home" include Sonic Youth, Mobius Band, The Alchemystics, The Primate Fiasco, Erin McKeown, Swillmerchants, The Thungs, The Amity Front, The Neilds, The Young@Heart Chorus, Ella Longpre, The Trials and Tribulations, Cordelia’s Dad, Thrillpillow, Rusty Belle, Curious Buddies, The Novels, futurepunk, and Rabbit Rabbit.
Hampshire County Courthouse in Northampton On August 29, 1786, Daniel Shays and a group of Revolutionary War Veterans called the Shaysites, or "Regulators", stopped the civil court from sitting in Northampton. Colonial American Congregational preacher Jonathan Edwards led a spiritual revival in Northampton beginning in 1733. It reached such intensity, in the winter of 1734 and the following spring, as to threaten the business of the town. In the spring of 1735, the movement began to subside and a reaction set in. But the relapse was brief, and the Northampton revival, which had spread through the Connecticut River Valley and whose fame had reached England and Scotland, was followed in 1739–1740 by the Great Awakening, distinctively under the leadership of Edwards. Northampton was linked to the sea by the Hampshire and Hampden Canal in 1835, but the canal enterprise foundered and after about a decade was replaced by a railroad running along the same route. A flood on the Mill River on May 16, 1874, destroyed almost the entire village of Leeds in the township of Northampton. Northampton, which was incorporated as a city in 1883, developed into a thriving community and a local center for commerce, education, and the arts, even supporting a still-
Northampton sits on the banks of the Connecticut River, in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts. It is located at 42°19′39″N 72°39′28″W / 42.3275°N 72.65778°W / 42.3275; -72.65778Coordinates: 42°19′39″N 72°39′28″W / 42.3275°N 72.65778°W / 42.3275; -72.65778. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 35.6 square miles (92.2 km²), of which, 34.5 square miles (89.3 km²) of it is land and
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1.1 square miles (3.0 km²) of it (3.20%) is water. Inclusive within the city limits are the villages of Florence and Leeds. It is bordered to the north by the towns of Hatfield and Williamsburg, to the west by Westhampton, to the east by Hadley (across the Connecticut River), and to the south by Easthampton.
grade), one high school (9th to 12th grade), and one vocational-agricultural high school (9th to 12th grade). There are a few charter schools and several private schools in Northampton and surrounding towns.
Northampton is also considered by many as something of a liberal mecca, due in part to the five colleges in the area and the city’s large LGBT community. Smith College, which has an active and progressive lesbian community and a number of female-to-male transgendered students, is part of the center of the city’s activities. The city has a non-discrimination ordinance in place which protects individuals from discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity and expression. The city is home to the national office of the Bill of Rights Defense Committee, a civil liberties advocacy group; Free Press, a nonprofit advocating media reform and citizen involvement in media public policy; The Freedom Center, an antipsychiatry community and advocacy group; and the National Priorities Project, a non-profit group that tracks federal spending, most notably by maintaining a web-based counter calculating the cost of the war in Iraq. As of 2007, Mary Clare Higgins is the Mayor. Previous mayors include former president Calvin Coolidge and James "Big Jim" Cahillane who served from 1954 to 1960. Also well known Judge Sean M. Dunphy was the youngest elected mayor in its history at age 28. The Paradise City Forum was founded November, 2001 to provide a nonpartisan discussion tool for the community.
As of the census of 2000, there were 28,978 people, 11,880 households, and 5,880 families residing in the city. Northampton has the most lesbian couples per capita of any city in the US. The population density was 841.0 people per square mile (324.7/ km²). There were 12,405 housing units at an average density of 360.0/sq mi (139.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 90.01% White, 2.08% African American, 0.30% Native American, 3.13% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 2.41% from other races, and 2.03% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.24% of the population. There were 11,880 households out of which 22.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.7% were married couples living together, 10.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 50.5% were non-families. 37.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.14 and the average family size was 2.87. In the city the population was spread out with 17.0% under the age of 18, 15.4% from 18 to 24, 29.9% from 25 to 44, 23.9% from 45 to 64, and 13.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 75.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 71.1 males. The median income for a household in the city was $41,808, and the median income for a family was $56,844. Males had a median income of $37,264 versus $30,728 for females. The per capita income for the city was $24,022. About 5.7% of families and 9.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.4% of those under age 18 and 9.1% of those age 65 or over. Northampton’s public schools include four elementary schools (kindergarten through 5th grade), one middle school (6th to 8th
Public schools Transportation
Northampton is served by Interstate 91, which passes to the east of downtown along the Connecticut River. U.S. Route 5, Massachusetts Route 9, and Massachusetts Route 10 all intersect in the city’s downtown area. The Pioneer Valley Transit Authority operates several local passenger buses which originate in Northampton, with service to local towns such as Amherst and Holyoke, and
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nearby universities, such as Mount Holyoke College, Amherst College, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Hampshire College. The Franklin Regional Transit Authority also operates a bus to Greenfield, Massachusetts. There is a Peter Pan Bus terminal with services to Springfield, Boston, and other locations in New England. The Vermont Transit Lines bus also serves this terminal. Passenger railway service to the Northampton area is provided by Amtrak via the Amherst Train Station, about a 20-minute drive east of downtown Northampton. Additionally, at the bus terminal in Springfield, passengers can connect to buses to other cities in the northeast. The Springfield Amtrak station is a short walk from the Springfield bus depot. Major domestic and limited international service is available through Bradley International Airport (BDL) in Windsor Locks, Connecticut. It is located about 35 miles south of Northampton. The only active train line through Northampton is operated by a Class 2 railroad regional railway, Pan Am Railways (formerly known as Guilford Rail System). The Amtrak Montrealer was the last passenger train to run through Northampton. Northampton Airport, identified by the airport code 7B2, offers a 3365X50 foot runway and is within a mile-and-a-half walk from downtown.
public policy web log was created under the banner of The Valley Advocate known as Northampton Redoubt.
Points of interest
The Connecticut River in Northampton • First Churches , located on Main Street, was the home church of Jonathan Edwards, 18th century theologian, philosopher and leader of the First Great Awakening. • Smith College is a women’s college (one of the Seven Sisters) founded in 1871. It is also one of the Five Colleges. • Clarke School For The Deaf specializes in oral education (speech and lip-reading, as opposed to signing), and holds an annual summer camp, the theme varying from summer to summer. Clarke is also the oldest oral school for the deaf in the country, being established in 1867 on Round Hill Road overlooking the Connecticut River Valley. • The Connecticut River and The Oxbow, are popular areas for boaters in the valley. • Fitzgerald Lake Conservation Area, Rainbow Beach, Roberts Hill Conservation
The Daily Hampshire Gazette is based in Northampton, covering Hampshire and Franklin counties. Northampton is the city of license for three commercial radio stations: WLZX, WEIB and WHMP. Northampton is also home to WXOJ-LP, a low power community radio station owned and operated by Valley Free Radio. The station was built by more than 400 volunteers from Northampton and around the country in August 2005 at the eighth Prometheus Radio Project barnraising, in conjunction with the tenth annual Grassroots Radio Coalition conference. WXOJ broadcasts music, news, and public affairs to listeners at 103.3FM. In 2006, Northampton saw the birth of The Rainbow Times,a monthly newspaper that caters to the extensive LGBT population in a quad-state area, western MA, north central CT, southern VT and the Capital District of NY. In 2007 a new
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Area, Mineral Hills Conservation Area, and Saw Mill Hills Conservation Area provide a portion of the protected open space that covers 15% of the City. Look Park is a 150+ acre recreational park founded in 1930. Although Frank Newhall Look, who left the property to the city in his will, requested that the park would always have free admission for the public, the current annual membership fee is $25. Blanket picnicking is not permitted, although picnic tables may be rented for an additional fee. Northampton is becoming a rail trail hub. Currently, the Norwottuck Rail Trail extends ten miles from Northampton to Amherst and Belchertown, the 2.5 mile Northampton Bike Path extends from downtown Northampton to Florence, and the Manhan Rail Trail Spur extends 0.5 miles from Route 66 to Florence Road. Four other rail trail extensions are under construction, in the bidding process, or planned for the short term. The Botanic Garden of Smith College is a diverse outdoor collection of trees, shrubs, and plants, as well as a fine collection of plant conservatories for the tropics, semitropics, and desert regions. It also includes an indoor greenhouse. The Three County Fair claims to be the "longest consecutive running agricultural fair in the country", having been established and incorporated in 1818. Due to its relative proximity to Boston and its strong arts community, many musicians perform in Northampton at local venues such as the Calvin theater, the Iron Horse Music Hall, Flywheel and the Pearl Street Nightclub. The Northampton Independent Film Festival (NIFF) is held each fall. Founded as the Northampton Film Festival in 1995 by Howard Polonsky and Dee DeGeiso, it has continued to grow under a variety of directors. It is one of the largest in New England. The Academy of Music, built in 1890 by Edward H.R. Lyman, is the only municipally owned theatre in the nation, and was the first to be so owned; it is also one of the six oldest theatres, nationally. Boris Karloff and Harry Houdini (who installed a trap door in the stage) performed here. The Academy is still in operation today.
• Forbes Library The built in 1894 is the public library for Northampton. The second floor houses the unofficial Calvin Coolidge presidential library. • Mirage Studios, the Creators of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Franchise. In the TMNT series, the turtles and Casey Jones visit Casey Jones’ grandmother’s farm in Northampton, Massachusetts. • Northampton Community Music Center Each May, students from the (NCMC) fill the streets with music. • LGBT Pride On the first Saturday of May, Northampton marks the annual Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride March & Rallywith a colorful parade down Main St. (Route 9), ending with an all-day family-friendly festival at a designated location in town. • Thornes Marketplace in downtown Northampton contains shops, restaurants, a gallery and a performing space where local dance and theater performances occur regularly. • On a small hill overlooking the city, right by the site of the Northampton State Hospital, sits a simple stone monument marking the spot of the hangings of Daley and Halligan, two Irishmen wrongfully accused of murder in the early 1800s. • Sylvester’s Restaurant - Located at 111 Pleasant Street. Sylvester’s is located in the former home of Sylvester Graham, inventor of the Graham Cracker. Sylvester’s claimed top honors for breakfast in the Valley Advocate’s "Best Of" reader’s poll and since then, Sylvester’s has consistently ranked among the top 3 contenders for assorted restaurant categories.
• Lexie Barnes, handbag designer, author, and director of Twist, a contemporary craft and art fair. • Jesse Barrett-Mills, Independent Filmmaker • Jeanne Birdsall, children’s author, best known for her debut novel, The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy • Jonah Burke, creator, fundraising website The Darfur Wall
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• Augusten Burroughs, author, his bestseller Running with Scissors describes his strange childhood in Northampton • William Cullen Bryant, 19c author and newspaper editor • Eric Carle, children’s book author and illustrator • Lydia Maria Child, authoress of the Thanksgiving poem "Over the River and Through the Woods" • Chris Collingwood, lead singer of the band Fountains of Wayne • Calvin Coolidge; served as mayor of Northampton before becoming governor of Massachusetts and U.S. president • Galaxy Craze, actress and author known for bestselling novel "By the Shore". • DJ Willegal, Hip-Hop Producer • Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird published Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comics from their Northampton studio • Jonathan Edwards, 18c Congregational theologian, philosopher, leader of First Great Awakening and local pastor • Anthony Giardina, author • Herbert Gintis, economist • Sylvester Graham, namesake of the Graham Cracker • Jonathan Harr, author of the A Civil Action • D. Dennis Hudson, emeritus professor and internationally known scholar of Indian religion • Jonathan Hunt (Vermont Lieutenant Governor) (1738-1808), early Vermont pioneer, landowner, officeholder, born Northampton • Jeph Jacques, creator of webcomic Questionable Content • Tracy Kidder, author • Michael Klare, author, professor and defense correspondent for The Nation • Elinor Lipman, author • Charles McCarry, author • José Molina, member, USA national Indoor field hockey team • William Monahan, novelist and screenwriter • Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon of the band Sonic Youth • Lesléa Newman, author of "Heather Has Two Mommies." • Dr. Kyle Pruett author and child psychiatry expert • Jeff Rowland, Creator of the webcomics Wigu and Overcompensating • Talisa Soto, actress
• Sojourner Truth, African American abolitionist and orator • Kurt Vonnegut, author • Dar Williams, popular musician. • Megan E. LaBonte - local artist.
• Northampton, Massachusetts is the birthplace of the eponymous protagonist in Henry James’s 1875 novel Roderick Hudson. • Segments of the 1966 film Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? were filmed in and around Northampton during the fall of 1965 . When not filming, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton frequented Northampton’s Academy of Music, where they sat in the balcony to watch movies. • Other films filmed in Northampton include the Academy-Award-winning The Cider House Rules, Malice with Nicole Kidman and Alec Baldwin, In Dreams with Annette Bening and Robert Downey Jr., and Sylvia with Gwyneth Paltrow. • Edge of Darkness was filmed in October, 2008 in Northampton and the surrounding area. • It is also known as the birthplace of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The concept was created and developed here by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird. • Author Tracy Kidder documented the many layers of Northampton society at the end of the 20th century in his nonfiction book Home Town. • Webcomics Questionable Content and Minimalist Stick Figure Theatre take place primarily in Northampton. • Artist Jeffrey Rowlands makes his home in Northampton and is primarily famous for his Overcompensating Comic.
 Map of history of political boundaries, plantation period  Trumbull, James Russell. History of Northampton, Massachusetts, From Its Settlement in 1654. Northampton (1898), pp. 5-12.  Map of history of political boundaries c1775  Map of history of political boundaries, Federal period  US-5: A Highway To History
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 Historic Northampton: Caleb Strong  Historic Northampton: Shays’ Rebellion  Copeland, Alfred M. "Our County And Its People": A History of Hampden County, Massachusetts. Century Memorial Publishing (1902), pp. 174-75.  Andrews, E. Benjamin. The United States In Our Own Time: A History from Reconstruction to Expansion. C. Scribner’s Sons (1903), pp. 183-84.  MassLive: Academy of Music back in movie business  "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2005-05-03. http://www.census.gov/geo/ www/gazetteer/gazette.html. Retrieved on 2008-01-31.  "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved on 2008-01-31.  City Data  Mayor’s Office Mayor’s Office Home  The History of the Descendants of Elder John Strong, of Northampton, Massachusetts, Vol. II, Benjamin Woodbridge Dwight, Joel Munsell, Albany, 1871  Lesléa Newman articles  eNotes: Roderick Hudson  ePodunk community profile Northampton, Massachusetts  ePodunk: filming locations  The Greenfield Recorder  TMNT Origin!
Northampton, Massachusetts, 1654-2004. Northampton: Historic Northampton Museum and Education Center, in association with University of Massachusetts Press, 2004. ix + 523 pp. ISBN 978-1-55849-485-5. reprints 20 essays by scholars • Tracy Kidder. Home Town , nonfiction by reporter
• • • • • • • • • • City of Northampton’s official website Visit Northampton (city guide website) Smith College Northampton Public Schools Forbes Library (Northampton) Historic Northampton (historical society website) Northampton Community Television NCTV Daily Hampshire Gazette, the (Northampton newspaper) The Rainbow Times, Only Local LGBT Newspaper, (established in 2006) Midweek Politics, a nationally-syndicated political radio show produced and broadcast from Northampton, Massachusetts. Valley Free Radio, a low-power FM community radio station, has made its home in Northampton since August 2005. Friends of Northampton Trails and Greenways, (established in 2006) SkySutton.com Comprehensive data collection of those buried in Bridge Street Cemetery.
• Kerry W. Buckley, ed. A Place Called Paradise: Culture and Community in