Mount Washington, Massachusetts

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This article is about a town in southwestern Massachusetts. It should not be confused with Mount Washington, a mountain in New Hampshire.
Mount Washington, Massachusetts
Town
The town church and town hall
The town church and town hall
Official seal of Mount Washington, Massachusetts
Seal
Motto: The Town Among the Clouds
Location in Berkshire County in Massachusetts
Location in Berkshire County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°05′00″N 73°27′00″W / 42.08333°N 73.45000°W / 42.08333; -73.45000Coordinates: 42°05′00″N 73°27′00″W / 42.08333°N 73.45000°W / 42.08333; -73.45000
Country United States
State Massachusetts
County Berkshire
Settled 1692
Incorporated 1779
Government
 • Type Open town meeting
Area
 • Total 22.4 sq mi (57.9 km2)
 • Land 22.2 sq mi (57.5 km2)
 • Water 0.2 sq mi (0.4 km2)
Elevation 1,631 ft (497 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 167
 • Density 8/sq mi (2.9/km2)
Time zone Eastern (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (UTC-4)
ZIP code 01258
Area code(s) 413
FIPS code 25-43300
GNIS feature ID 0618271
Website townofmtwashington.com

Mount Washington is a town in Berkshire County, Massachusetts, United States. It is part of the Pittsfield, Massachusetts Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 167 at the 2010 census,[1] making it the smallest town in Berkshire County and, after Gosnold and Monroe, the third smallest in Massachusetts. The name "Mount Washington" does not refer to Mount Washington of New Hampshire, New England's highest peak, but to an alternate, no longer used name for the southern Taconic Mountains in which the town sits. The name "Washington" is a tribute to George Washington, the first president of the United States.

History[edit]

Mount Washington was first settled in 1692 and was officially incorporated in 1779.

In 1857, a portion of the town that was much less accessible from the rest of Mount Washington than from the adjacent town of Ancram, New York, was ceded to New York state, and added to Ancram's territory; it is now the hamlet of Boston Corner within Ancram.

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 22.4 square miles (57.9 km2), of which 22.2 square miles (57.5 km2) is land and 0.15 square miles (0.4 km2), or 0.67%, is water.[1] Mount Washington is the westernmost and southwesternmost town in Massachusetts.

The town is bordered on the west by Columbia County, New York, on a half-mile portion of its southern border by Dutchess County, New York, and on the rest of the southern border by Litchfield County, Connecticut. It is bordered on the north by Egremont, on the east by Sheffield, on the south by Salisbury, Connecticut, on the southwest by the Whitehouse Crossing section of North East, New York, and on the west by Ancram and Copake, New York. Mount Washington is 33 miles (53 km) south-southwest of Pittsfield, 58 miles (93 km) west of Springfield, and 148 miles (238 km) west-southwest of Boston.

Mount Washington is located on a plateau in the Taconic Mountains. To the east, Mount Everett, the highest point in town and the highest point in the southern Taconic Mountains, rises 2,602 feet (793 m) feet near the town's eastern border. To the north, several mountains and hills lie along the Egremont town line. Alander Mountain and the western escarpment of the southern Taconic Mountains lie along the western border of Mount Washington at the Columbia County, New York line. To the south, along the Connecticut border, stand another series of peaks including Mount Frissell. Although the summit of this mountain rests within the town of Mount Washington, its southern slope is located in Connecticut and is that state's highest elevation. Many brooks lie within the town, most of which feed into Roeliff Jansen Kill in Copake, New York. Mount Washington State Forest makes up a large portion of the town, as does Mount Everett State Reservation. The town is also home to Bash Bish Falls State Park, which is centered around its eponymous falls. The Appalachian Trail enters Massachusetts in Mount Washington, coming from Bear Mountain, then turning east before following near the eastern town border, over Mount Race and Mount Everett, before heading into Egremont.

Mount Washington is remote, with only four roads that lead out of the town, and only one, East Street, connected to the rest of Massachusetts via Egremont. There are no state roads within the town, with only New York State Route 344 entering the town, primarily as access to Bash Bish Falls from Route 22. The nearest state route in Massachusetts accessible to the town is Route 23 in Egremont. The nearest interstate, Interstate 90 (the Massachusetts Turnpike), is several miles north of the town, with the nearest exit, the "turn-around" exit 1, being in West Stockbridge. The nearest rail, bus and small airplane service are in Great Barrington, and the nearest national air service is at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut.

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Year Pop.   ±%  
1850 351 —    
1860 321 −8.5%
1870 256 −20.2%
1880 205 −19.9%
1890 418 +103.9%
1900 122 −70.8%
1910 110 −9.8%
1920 73 −33.6%
1930 60 −17.8%
1940 57 −5.0%
1950 34 −40.4%
1960 34 +0.0%
1970 52 +52.9%
1980 93 +78.8%
1990 135 +45.2%
2000 130 −3.7%
2010 167 +28.5%
* = population estimate.
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]

As of the census[12] of 2000, there were 130 people, 64 households, and 36 families residing in the town. The town is the smallest town of the 32 cities and towns in Berkshire County, and the third-smallest of the 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts (only Monroe and Gosnold are smaller). The population density was 5.8 people per square mile (2.3/km²), the most sparsely populated town in the county and Commonwealth. There were 128 housing units at an average density of 5.8 per square mile (2.2/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 100.00% White.

There were 64 households out of which 15.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.4% were married couples living together, 4.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 42.2% were non-families. 37.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.03 and the average family size was 2.70.

In the town the population was spread out with 16.9% under the age of 18, 2.3% from 18 to 24, 21.5% from 25 to 44, 43.8% from 45 to 64, and 15.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 52 years. For every 100 females there were 109.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 103.8 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $53,125, and the median income for a family was $55,750. Males had a median income of $40,417 versus $31,250 for females. The per capita income for the town was $50,149. the highest in Berkshire County and the highest of any town in the four counties that make up Western Massachusetts. There were 4.5% of families and 8.2% of the population living below the poverty line, including no under eighteens and none of those over 64.

Government[edit]

Mount Washington employs the open town meeting form of government, and is led by a board of selectmen and administrative assistant. The town has no post office (it is served by the Egremont post office). The town has a small library which is connected to the regional library system.

On the state level, Mount Washington is represented in the Massachusetts House of Representatives by the Fourth Berkshire district, which covers southern Berkshire County, as well as the westernmost towns in Hampden County. In the Massachusetts Senate, the town is represented by the Berkshire, Hampshire and Franklin district, which includes all of Berkshire County and western Hampshire and Franklin Counties.[13] The town is patrolled by the First (Lee) Station of Barracks "B" of the Massachusetts State Police.[14]

On the national level, Mount Washington is represented in the United States House of Representatives as part of Massachusetts's 1st congressional district, and has been represented by Richard Neal of Springfield since January 2013. Massachusetts is currently represented in the United States Senate by senior Senator Elizabeth Warren and junior senator Ed Markey.

Education[edit]

Mount Washington has an agreement with the South Berkshire Regional School District to send its students to the regional schools. Kindergarten and first grade students attend the South Egremont School, second through sixth grade students attend Undermountain School in Sheffield, and seventh through twelfth grade students attend Mount Everett Regional High School in Sheffield. Additionally, there are private schools in Sheffield, Great Barrington and Salisbury, Connecticut.

The nearest community college is the South County Center of Berkshire Community College in Great Barrington. The nearest state college is Westfield State University. The nearest private college is Bard College at Simon's Rock in Great Barrington.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Mount Washington town, Berkshire County, Massachusetts". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved December 16, 2013. 
  2. ^ "TOTAL POPULATION (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010. 
  3. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  4. ^ "1990 Census of Population, General Population Characteristics: Massachusetts". US Census Bureau. December 1990. Table 76: General Characteristics of Persons, Households, and Families: 1990. 1990 CP-1-23. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  5. ^ "1980 Census of the Population, Number of Inhabitants: Massachusetts". US Census Bureau. December 1981. Table 4. Populations of County Subdivisions: 1960 to 1980. PC80-1-A23. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  6. ^ "1950 Census of Population". 1: Number of Inhabitants. Bureau of the Census. 1952. Section 6, Pages 21-10 and 21-11, Massachusetts Table 6. Population of Counties by Minor Civil Divisions: 1930 to 1950. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  7. ^ "1920 Census of Population". Bureau of the Census. Number of Inhabitants, by Counties and Minor Civil Divisions. Pages 21-5 through 21-7. Massachusetts Table 2. Population of Counties by Minor Civil Divisions: 1920, 1910, and 1920. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  8. ^ "1890 Census of the Population". Department of the Interior, Census Office. Pages 179 through 182. Massachusetts Table 5. Population of States and Territories by Minor Civil Divisions: 1880 and 1890. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  9. ^ "1870 Census of the Population". Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1872. Pages 217 through 220. Table IX. Population of Minor Civil Divisions, &c. Massachusetts. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  10. ^ "1860 Census". Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1864. Pages 220 through 226. State of Massachusetts Table No. 3. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  11. ^ "1850 Census". Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011. 
  12. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  13. ^ Senators and Representatives by City and Town
  14. ^ Station B-1, SP Lee

External links[edit]