For additional information refer to the
History of Colonial Massachusetts
Founding of the Massachusetts Colony
When was the colony of Massachusetts founded? The Massachusetts Colony was founded in 1630 by John Winthrop and other Puritans, at Massachusetts Bay.
The Naming of the Massachusetts Colony
Name of an Algonquian tribe meaning “At the Great Hill.”
Information and Facts with the Massachusetts Colony Fact File
The first maps and records were made by John Smith in 1614. Permanent occupation of the colony dates from the voyage of the "Mayflower," which brought over a hundred men, women and children. Sir Ferdinando Gorges became the leader in founding Maine. Fast facts and interesting information about the founding, establishment, geography, climate, religion, history, natural resources, raw material, industries (refer to Colonial Times) and the famous historical people associated with the Massachusetts Colony of Colonial America. Information and facts at a glance about the Massachusetts Colony via this fast fact file.
The Plymouth Colony was founded in 1620 by Pilgrim Fathers, or Pilgrims, sail on the Mayflower Ship and founded the colony at Plymouth, Massachusetts based on the Mayflower Compact. The Massachusetts Bay Colony was founded in 1630 by John Winthrop and other colonists.
Major Towns / Cities: Boston, Quincy, Plymouth, Salem, Lexington, Concord
Major Industries: Agriculture (fishing, corn, livestock), Manufacturing (lumbering, shipbuilding).
Geography: Jagged coast and hills. The basic geography of New England consisted of mountains thick with trees, rivers and poor rocky soil that was difficult to farm and unsuitable for crops
Climate: New England was the coldest of the three regions, mild and short summers leading to long, cold winters but less disease than in the warmer colonies
Religion: There was no religious freedom in the areas inhabited by the Puritans as they did not tolerate any other form of religion. Refer to Religion in the Colonies
Natural Resources: Fish, whales, forests. Imported agricultural products from other colonies. Farming was difficult for crops like wheat because of the poor soil but corn, pumpkins, rye, squash and beans were raised
Economics and Trade: Concentrated in manufacture and focussed on town life and industries such as ship building and the manufacture and export of rum
Government: By 1775 Massachusetts was governed as a royal province while operating under a charter
Original Name: The original name of the colony was the Province of Massachusetts Bay, later Massachusetts and Maine
In towns along the coast, the colonists made their living fishing, whaling, and shipbuilding. Whale oil was a valuable resource as it could be used in lamps.
Farming was difficult for crops like wheat because of the poor soil but corn, pumpkins, rye, squash and beans were planted.
In 1692 the Salem Witchcraft Trialslast for three months from June to September
Trade / Exports: Fish, timber, furs, ships and livestock
Famous Battles: Battle of Lexington and the Battle of Concord
The Colony became a state on February 6, 1788. For additional facts and info refer to the Change from Colonies to States