|Taunton Great River|
View of Taunton River looking north from the Veterans Memorial Bridge
|Cities||Bridgewater, Taunton, Fall River|
|Mouth||Mount Hope Bay|
|Length||36 mi (58 km)|
The Taunton River (historically also called the "Taunton Great River"), is a river in southeastern Massachusetts in the United States. It arises from the confluence of the Town River and Matfield River, in the town of Bridgewater. From there it meanders through the towns of Halifax, Middleborough and Raynham, through the city of Taunton for which it is named, the towns of Berkley, Dighton, Somerset, and the Assonet section of Freetown, to Fall River where it joins Mount Hope Bay, an arm of Narragansett Bay.
The total length of the river is 37.0 miles (59.5 km) from the junction of the Town and Matfield Rivers in Bridgewater to the mouth of the Quequechan River in Fall River. It has a watershed of 562 square miles (1,456 km²). The river's watershed includes the Hockomock Swamp, the largest freshwater wetland in the state. The Taunton River is one of the flattest rivers in New England, dropping only about twenty feet (6 m) in elevation over its length. The river is tidal as far north as Taunton.
Since the development of industry beginning with the iron works of the mid-17th century, the Taunton River has played an important role in the economy of the Greater Taunton Area. The shipbuilding industry was very active in the Taunton area during the 19th century.
The river today
The Taunton River is the longest coastal river in New England without dams and supports 45 species of fish and many species of shellfish. The Taunton River is the principal river that makes up the Taunton River Watershed. The watershed is the habitat for 154 types of birds, including 12 rare types. It is also home to otter, mink, grey fox and deer.
- Winnetuxet River, at Halifax
- Nemasket River, at Middleborough
- Mill River, at Taunton
- Three Mile River at Dighton
- Assonet River at Freetown
- Fall River, Massachusetts
- List of Massachusetts rivers
- Taunton, Massachusetts
- Three Mile River
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Taunton River
- Taunton River Stewardship Program: The Wildlands Trust of Southeastern Massachusetts
- Taunton River Watershed Alliance
- University of Rhode Island: Taunton River Watershed critical resource atlas.