Capital city Boston
Population 7.033.469 (2020)
Surface 27.360 km²
Governor Charlie Baker (R)
Member of the US since 1788

A map of Massachusetts

Massachusetts is a state in the northeastern United States of America, in the New England region. Just over 7 million people live in the state. Massachusetts borders the states of Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Vermont, and New Hampshire. The capital of Massachusetts is Boston, which is also the largest city in the state. Massachusetts is the largest state in New England in terms of population. Massachusetts plays an important role in the history and culture of the United States. Massachusetts was originally a colony of England. The first settlers arrived on the Mayflower in 1620 and founded the Massachusetts Bay colony in 1630. The Salem witch trials took place in Massachusetts in 1692. The Boston Tea Party also took place in the state and led to the American Revolutionary War. Massachusetts was one of the first thirteen American states. After independence, Massachusetts became the center of American industry, the struggle against slavery and transcentalism. Famous writers like Nathaniel Hawthorne,Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson were from Massachusetts. In addition, many political families lived in Massachusetts, such as the Adams family and the Kennedy family. In addition to its history, the famous Harvard University is located in Massachusetts. Massachusetts also has many other institutions and is at the forefront of biotechnology. The state is very progressive and was the first to legalize same- sex marriage (in 2004). The term Massachusetts liberal is derived from state and is used for moderate or progressive Republicans. Massachusetts is a blue state, which means that the Democratic Party has a large following. Massachusetts is one of the states with the title Commonwealth. This is a historical name used by many states that were once British colonies. Because of this, the state is officially called the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Geography

Landscape

The Dunes of Massachusetts

Massachusetts is one of the smallest and most populous states in the United States. Most residents of the state live in the capital Boston or on the coastal areas. Massachusetts is called the Bay State as it has several bays. The state is named after Massachusetts Bay where Boston abuts. South of this bay is Cape Cod Bay, which is surrounded to the south by the Cape Cod Peninsula. In the south of the state, the coastal area has several deep inlets. Several islands are also located here, the most famous of which are Greylock]] Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. Surrounding Boston is the area Greater Boston, where by far the most people live. While the east of the state is very densely populated, the west is quite sparsely populated. To the west are the Tatonic Mountains, which are part of the Appalachian Mountains. The landscape here is a lot more hilly. The Connecticut River flows through this area, dividing the state in two, as it were. There is a dam in this river, creating a lake. This lake is called Lake Hitchcock. The landscape of Massachusetts is quite flat compared to other states despite the hills. Only the far west is mountainous. Here is the highest point in the state, Mount Greylock, with an elevation of 1064 meters.

Largest Cities in Massachusetts

Name Residents County
1. Boston 675.647 Suffolk County
2. Worcester 206.518 Worcester County
3. Springfield 155.929 Hampden County
4. Cambridge 118.403 Middlesex County
5. Lowell 115.554 Middlesex County
6. Brockton 105.643 Plymouth County
7. Quincy 101.636 Norfolk County
8. Lynn 101.253 Essex County
9. New Bedford 101.079 Bristol County
10. Fall River 94.000 Bristol County

Climate

Boston during a blizzard

Massachusetts has a humid continental climate. This means that the state has to deal with cold winters and warm summers. In the west of the state, summers and winters are slightly milder than in the east of the state. There is also slightly more rain in the west than in the east. This has to do with the influence of the sea. Snow falls in all areas of Massachusetts in the winter, but the west often has more snow than the east. Massachusetts may experience blizzards, but hardly any tropical storms. There are no hurricanes in Massachusetts as it is too north. Although hurricanes do not pass over Massachusetts itself, the weather can be affected by a hurricane nearby. In this case, the state is dealing with tropical storm. Since 1851, Massachusetts has had only three of these storms. In the summer there can be severe thunderstorms and there is an average of one tornado per year.

Population

General

Massachusetts has just over 7 million residents. The state’s population is still growing; between 2010 and 2020 the number of inhabitants increased by 7.4%. Massachusetts is the most populous state after Rhode Island and New Jersey. Most residents live in the east of the state; mainly in and around Boston. The east of the state is much more rural with some smaller towns. Of the Massachusetts population, 73% is White, 10% Latino, 8.8% African American, and 6.3% Asian American. Most residents are of English, French, Irish or Italian descent. In addition, Massachusetts has large groups of Dominicans, Brazilians, Haitians and Cape Verdeans.

Taal

The official language of Massachusetts is English. This language is also by far the most widely spoken. This language is used in education, justice, politics and everyday life. The Massachusetts government only recognizes English as the official language and most residents speak only English. Because of the many inhabitants from other countries, other languages ​​are also spoken in Massachusetts. The most widely spoken immigrant languages ​​are Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese and French.

Religion

Massachusetts was originally founded by the Puritans. These were strict Protestants who wanted to make the Christian faith “pure”. They came from England, but eventually had to leave for Massachusetts because of a conflict with the British king. For a long time only the Puritan religion was allowed in the state, but in the 18th century came religious freedom. Yet the majority of Massachusetts residents are still Christian (57%). Of these, 21% are Protestant and 34% Catholic. The number of Christians has been declining since the 20th century, while the number of unbelievers is increasing. 32% of the population say they have no religion or believe in anything. Lesser religions in Massachusetts are Judaism, Islam,Buddhism and Hinduism.

Politics

Massachusetts House of Representatives

State politics

Massachusetts is run by a governor. The current governor of Massachusetts is Charlie Baker of the Republican Party. In addition, Massachusetts has a lieutenant governor. This is the governor’s deputy. Together with eight ministers, they form the government of the state. The Massachusetts Parliament is called the Massachusetts General Court. It consists of two rooms:

  • The House of Representatives, consisting of 160 members.
  • The Senate, consisting of 40 members.

Both rooms are chosen every two. The Democratic Party has an absolute majority in both chambers.

Administrative division

A Map of Massachusetts Counties

How many counties in Massachusetts? Massachusetts is divided into 14 counties. These are:

  • Barnstable County
  • Berkshire County
  • Bristol County
  • Dukes County
  • Essex County
  • Franklin County
  • Hampden County
  • Hampshire County
  • Middlesex County
  • Nantucket County
  • Norfolk County
  • Plymouth County
  • Suffolk County
  • Worcester County

National politics

John F. Kennedy was from Massachusetts

Massachusetts was originally a red state, meaning the state almost always voted for Republican candidates. This changed in the 1950s, when the state gradually became Democratic. The last time Massachusetts voted for a Republican presidential candidate was in 1984 (for Ronald Reagan). Massachusetts is known for being progressive and liberal, which means that Massachusetts Republicans are also a lot more left-wing and progressive. They are therefore often referred to as Massachusetts liberal, although the term is also used for progressive Republicans from other states. In presidential elections, 60% of the vote often goes to a Democratic candidate. The state is represented in the United States Congress by nine delegates and two senators. All delegates are Democrats. The two Senators (Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey) are also both Democrats. Four US presidents came from Massachusetts. These were John Adams, his son John Quincy Adams, John F. Kennedy and George HW Bush.

Economy

The sunset in Cape Cod

Massachusetts is one of the richest states in the United States. The economy of the state is mainly focused on the service sector. In particular, many companies in the biotechnology, engineering, healthcare and finance sectors are located in Massachusetts. There is a lot of work in the state for highly educated people who come up with new technology or research new products. The knowledge economy is therefore very important. Several large companies are located in Massachusetts, mainly in the city of Boston. Examples include Eversource Energy and Global Partners. In addition, tourism plays an important role. Tourists mainly come for the city of Boston and the new towns such asCape Cod. In addition, the Massachusetts islands, primarily Martha’s Vineyard, are a popular destination for wealthy Americans. Many of them have second homes here. In the field of agriculture, crops grown in greenhouses are especially important. Cranberries, corn, and apples are also widely grown in the state. Massachusetts is the second largest producer of cranberries after Wisconsin.

Massachusetts - The Bay State

Massachusetts – The Bay State
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