Wilmington, Massachusetts

Coordinates: 42°33′N 71°10′W / 42.550°N 71.167°W / 42.550; -71.167
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Wilmington, Massachusetts
Church Street
Official seal of Wilmington, Massachusetts
Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Location in Middlesex County in Massachusetts
Coordinates: 42°33′N 71°10′W / 42.550°N 71.167°W / 42.550; -71.167
Country United States
State Massachusetts
RegionNew England
Named forSpencer Compton, 1st Earl of Wilmington
 • TypeOpen town meeting
 • Town
Jeffrey M. Hull
 • Total44.6 km2 (17.2 sq mi)
 • Land44.4 km2 (17.1 sq mi)
 • Water0.2 km2 (0.1 sq mi)
29 m (96 ft)
 • Total23,349
 • Density520/km2 (1,400/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP Code
Area code978
FIPS code25-80230
GNIS feature ID0618246

Wilmington is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. Its population was 23,349 at the 2020 United States census.[1]


Wilmington was first settled in 1665 and was officially incorporated in 1730, from parts of Woburn, Reading, and Billerica. The first settlers are believed to have been Will Butter, Richard Harnden or Abraham Jaquith. Butter, a Scottish Covenanter who fought against Cromwell in the English Civil Wars, was brought to Woburn as an indentured captive. He achieved his freedom, as did all indentured service, after nine years, then relocated to the opposite side of a large swamp (“the boggy part of Wooburne” “across the river") in what is now Wilmington. Harnden settled in Reading, in an area that is now part of Wilmington. Jaquith settled in an area of Billerica that became part of Wilmington in 1740.

Minutemen from Wilmington responded to the alarm on April 19, 1775, and fought at Merriam's Corner in Concord.

The Middlesex Canal passed through Wilmington. Chartered in 1792, opened in 1803, it provided freight and passenger transport between the Merrimack River and Boston. One important cargo on the canal was hops. From the middle of the 18th century until the early 19th century, Massachusetts was the acknowledged leader in hop production in North America. Middlesex County in particular was famous for its hop yards, and Wilmington was the first place where the culture grew to a fever pitch.[2]

When Lowell was built in the 1820s, the canal became a primary means of transporting cotton to and from the mills. It was abandoned in 1852 after the construction of the Boston and Lowell Railroad.

The Boston and Lowell Railroad was built in 1835. The line is now the oldest operating rail line in the U.S. Wilmington is also served by the Haverhill Division (the old B&M Portland Division). A spur track known as the Wildcat connects the Haverhill and Lowell divisions, following the path of the old Wilmington & Andover Railroad, the corporate ancestor of the Boston & Maine.

Wilmington is where the Baldwin apple was discovered.

Wilmington is also home to the Col. Joshua Harnden Tavern, which probably served as a stop on the underground railroad and now houses the Wilmington Town Museum.

Since World War II, Wilmington's population has quadrupled. Interstate 93, Route 62, Route 129 and Route 38 run through town, and Route 128 is about a mile south of Wilmington.


Wilmington is located at 42°33′N 71°10′W / 42.550°N 71.167°W / 42.550; -71.167 (42.560, −71.170).[3]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 17.2 square miles (45 km2), of which 17.1 square miles (44 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2), or 0.46%, is water.

Wilmington borders the towns of Andover, North Reading, Reading, Woburn, Burlington, Billerica, and Tewksbury. The town is frequently divided into distinct areas, including Silver Lake and North Wilmington.

Much of Wilmington was built on or still is wetlands. The Ipswich River starts in Wilmington, and the Shawsheen River forms part of Wilmington's border with Billerica.

There is one lake in the town, Silver Lake, a kettle lake formed in the retreat of the Pleistocene glaciers at the end of the last ice age.[4] It is open for swimming during the summer.


In a typical year, Wilmington, Massachusetts temperatures fall below 50 °F (10 °C) for 195 days per year. Annual precipitation is typically 44.4 inches per year (high in the US) and snow covers the ground 62 days per year, or 17% of the year (high in the US). It may be helpful to understand the yearly precipitation by imagining nine straight days of moderate rain per year. The humidity is below 60% for approximately 25.4 days, or 7% of the year.[5]


Historical population
* = population estimate.
Source: United States census records and Population Estimates Program data.[6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16]

The Census Bureau has defined Wilmington as a census-designated place that is equivalent to the town

As of the census[17] of 2000, there were 21,363 people, 7,027 households, and 5,776 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,247.0 inhabitants per square mile (481.5/km2). There were 7,158 housing units at an average density of 417.8 per square mile (161.3/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 96.31% White, 0.41% Black or African American, 0.08% Native American, 2.03% Asian, 0.42% from other races, and 0.74% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.95% of the population.

There were 7,027 households, out of which 41.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 69.6% were married couples living together, 9.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 17.8% were non-families. Of all households 14.0% were made up of individuals, and 5.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.00 and the average family size was 3.33.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 27.6% under the age of 18, 5.9% from 18 to 24, 33.5% from 25 to 44, 22.2% from 45 to 64, and 10.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.1 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $70,652, and the median income for a family was $76,760. Males had a median income of $50,446 versus $36,729 for females. The per capita income for the town was $25,835. About 1.8% of families and 1.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.7% of those under age 18 and 2.7% of those age 65 or over. It is the 134th richest place in Massachusetts. See Massachusetts locations by per capita income.


Wilmington has its own schools. Kindergarten students attend the Wildwood Street and Boutwell Street Schools. Grades 1–3 attend the Woburn Street School and the Shawsheen School. Grades 4 and 5 attend the North Intermediate School and the West Intermediate School. Grades 6–8 attend Wilmington Middle School. High School Students attend Wilmington High School. Wilmington High's mascot is the wildcat and its athletic teams participate in the Essex League, which the town recently changed to. The Wildcats' colors are Navy Blue, Columbia Blue and White and the primary rivals are the Tewksbury Redmen of the Merrimack Valley Conference. Wilmington is also home to Abundant Life Christian School a Pre-K to 8 private religious school. Wilmington students also have the option of attending Shawsheen Technical High School.


Companies based in Wilmington include Analog Devices, Charles River Laboratories, Onto Innovation and UniFirst.


Wilmington has an open town meeting, a board of selectmen and a town manager. The current town manager is Jeffrey Hull. Five of the town's six districts are represented in the Massachusetts House of Representatives by David Robertson, the last is represented by Ken Gordon. The town's state senator is Bruce Tarr. Wilmington is in the Massachusetts 6th Congressional District and is represented in the United States House of Representatives by Seth Moulton.

Points of interest[edit]

  • The Wilmington Town Common and Rotary Park are in the center of town. There are several parks and public recreation facilities throughout town with walking paths, soccer fields, baseball diamonds, and other athletic facilities.
  • Shriners Auditorium: a 2,650-seat indoor arena, home of Boston Roller Derby women's flat track roller derby league.
  • Silver Lake: The shore of Silver Lake contains the Town Beach, a playground, Fullerton Park, and Landry Park.[18]
  • Ristuccia Ice Arena: the former practice rink of the Boston Bruins, it also offers lessons.
  • The Baldwin Apple Monument on Chestnut St., southwest of town, marks site of original Baldwin apple tree.
  • The Wilmington Memorial library.
  • Yentile Farm Recreational Facility: A large public recreational facility located near the center of town.[19]


The MBTA Commuter Rail serves the town of Wilmington with two train stations on two of the system's branches – one station per branch. The Lowell Commuter Rail Line stops at Wilmington Station in the center of town, while the Haverhill Commuter Rail Line serves North Wilmington Station located two miles further east. Both stations are located adjacent to Massachusetts State Route 62; inbound travel time on delay-free trips to Boston's North Station is approximately 28 minutes from Wilmington Station along the Lowell Line and 41 minutes from North Wilmington Station along the Haverhill Line.[20][21]

Additionally, the northernmost bus stop for MBTA Bus Route 134 is located near Wilmington's southern town line at the intersection of Massachusetts State Route 38, Old Main Street and Border Avenue; the neighboring city of Woburn is 400 feet to the south of this bus stop.[22] Although the bus route does in fact enter Wilmington, outbound trips always refer to its terminus point as "North Woburn"; the route's northern terminus also happens to be the only MBTA bus stop within the entire town of Wilmington.[23] Inbound service on MBTA Bus Route 134 travels from Wilmington's southernmost extremities to Wellington Station in Medford to connect with Orange Line subway trains.

Lowell Regional Transit Authority Bus Route 12 provides weekday and Saturday service from the Lowell Commuter Rail Line’s Wilmington Station via Massachusetts State Route 38 and the neighboring town of Tewksbury to the Charles A. Gallagher Transit Terminal in the city of Lowell.[24]

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ "Census - Geography Profile: Wilmington town, Middlesex County, Massachusetts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 12, 2021.
  2. ^ Tomlan, Michael, "Tinged with Gold: Hop Culture in the U.S." Univ. of Georgia, 1992.
  3. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  4. ^ Crosby, Irving B., 1928, Boston through the Ages: The Geological Story of Greater Boston, Marshall Jones Company, Boston, Massachusetts
  5. ^ "Climate in Wilmington, Massachusetts". Retrieved July 10, 2022.
  6. ^ "Total Population (P1), 2010 Census Summary File 1". American FactFinder, All County Subdivisions within Massachusetts. United States Census Bureau. 2010.
  7. ^ "Massachusetts by Place and County Subdivision - GCT-T1. Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  8. ^ "1990 Census of Population, General Population Characteristics: Massachusetts" (PDF). US Census Bureau. December 1990. Table 76: General Characteristics of Persons, Households, and Families: 1990. 1990 CP-1-23. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  9. ^ "1980 Census of the Population, Number of Inhabitants: Massachusetts" (PDF). US Census Bureau. December 1981. Table 4. Populations of County Subdivisions: 1960 to 1980. PC80-1-A23. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  10. ^ "1950 Census of Population" (PDF). 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.
  11. ^ "1920 Census of Population" (PDF). 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.
  12. ^ "1890 Census of the Population" (PDF). 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.
  13. ^ "1870 Census of the Population" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1872. Pages 217 through 220. Table IX. Population of Minor Civil Divisions, &c. Massachusetts. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  14. ^ "1860 Census" (PDF). 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.
  15. ^ "1850 Census" (PDF). Department of the Interior, Census Office. 1854. Pages 338 through 393. Populations of Cities, Towns, &c. Retrieved July 12, 2011.
  16. ^ "City and Town Population Totals: 2020−2022". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved November 25, 2023.
  17. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  18. ^ "Silver Lake, Town of Wilmington, Ma". www.facebook.com. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  19. ^ "Yentile Farm recreation area hailed as 'land for all ages' in Wilmington (SLIDESHOW)". Lowell Sun. May 19, 2017. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  20. ^ "Lowell Line" (PDF). MBTA Lowell Line schedule. Effective October 17, 2022. Page 1. Retrieved November 21, 2022.
  21. ^ "Haverhill Line" (PDF). MBTA Haverhill Line schedule. Effective October 17, 2022. Page 1. Retrieved November 21, 2022.
  22. ^ "Google Maps". Walking directions from Main St @ Old Main St bus stop to 961 Main Street, Woburn. Retrieved November 21, 2022.
  23. ^ "Miles In Transit". Retrieved November 21, 2022.
  24. ^ "Lowell Regional Transit Authority". LRTA Bus Route 12 schedule. Retrieved November 21, 2022.
  25. ^ "MIT Officer Sean Collier Memorialized at His High School | IACLEA New Production". www.iaclea.org.
  26. ^ Rosen, Andy. "Keith Gill, Mass. investor known as 'Roaring Kitty,' testifies before state regulators". Boston Globe. Retrieved September 27, 2022.
  27. ^ David G. Hartwell, Literary-Minded Editor of Science Fiction, Dies at 74 at New York Times
  28. ^ Kendall, Bzra O. [from old catalog (September 15, 1850). "Uranography. & Atlas". [n.p.] Retrieved September 15, 2019 – via Internet Archive.

External links[edit]

Media related to Wilmington, Massachusetts at Wikimedia Commons