Welcome To KEY TO THE CITY's Page For
Hampshire County, Massachusetts
Chamber of Commerce.
The Nonotuck Indians sold this land to the Puritans in 1654. Initially it was a strict Puritan community with strong preaching and calls for repentance along with some of the witch hysteria that was prevalent during this time. The time period after the Revolutionary War left local residents struggling economically. By 1789, farmers were hit hard by land-based taxes as they had small cash flow with which to pay the taxes. Because they couldn’t pay the increased taxes, laws were in place that allowed states to take the farms of the delinquent taxpayers. An uprising because of these seizures was led by Daniel Shays on 29 August 1789. Shays Rebellion had a large influence on the delegates to the Constitutional Convention that was taking place at this time.
From the early 1800’s, transportation in the area improved as new bridges and a canal were built. When the railroad arrived in 1845, the advantage increased making the area a large industrial center. Not only was business and prosperity increasing in the Northampton area but it was also becoming an educational center for the area as well. The Gothic Seminary was an excellent private school for girls and Anna Laura Clarke’s preparatory School was also located here. In 1823, the Round Hill School for boys was opened. The Clarke School for the Deaf was opened in part due to the efforts of Alexander Graham Bell and is still highly regarded today.
Former U.S. President, Calvin Coolidge was a lawyer here with his office on Main Street. He was Mayor of the city in 1910 and 1911. Then rapidly became a State Senator, Governor and Vice President of the United States. Finally, he became the president in 1923. For many years the nickname for Northampton was Hamp, but in recent years it was shortened differently as Noho.
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46 Bridge Street
Northampton, MA 010660
Your Gateway to History in the Heart of Massachusetts
A museum of local history with collections, exhibits, a shop and more.
Calvin Coolidge Presidential Library and Museum
Located in the Forbes Library
20 West Street
Northampton, Massachusetts 01060
Smith College Museum of Art
Northampton, MA 01063
Paradise City Arts Festivals
Festivals are held throughout the year