The area of Chelmsford started out as a preserve for Christianized Indians in 1653, but became incorporated as a town in 1655. The town was named for Chelmsford, England, in Essex. It is the only town named Chelmsford in the United States, although there are other Chelmsfords in Ontario and New Brunswick, Canada.
The area?s freshwater fishing, strong agricultural lands and plentiful trees lead to rapid growth after the 18th-century annexation of Indian lands. After that, the community was mostly agricultural, although there were a few industrial operations, such as lime quarries and grist mills.
As one may guess from this long history, Chelmsford has many fascinating, well-preserved historical sites. The Barrett-Byam Homestead is home to the Chelmsford Historical Society and has maintained many of the rooms for touring and education. Some of the town?s first settlers are buried in the Forefathers Burying Ground, located behind the First Parish Unitarian Universalist Church. Visitors and residents can also pass by the Revolutionary War Memorial or a multitude of historic homes, many of which are inhabited by the town?s residents.
Chelmsford has also been the origin of many famous persons, including Lance Wilder, a contributor to ?The Simpsons,? and Benjamin Pierce, the father of the U.S. president Franklin Pierce. The town also had a hand in the discovery of jazz greats Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker, who rose to fame after some tapes of a concert by the men were found in a flea market at the Elk?s Lodge in Chelmsford.
Chelmsford residents have access to diverse shopping and dining opportunities, as well as many local and state parks and recreational areas. They are also served by several excellent schools, including one high school, two middle schools and five elementary schools. Middlesex County also has a variety of golf courses, including the local Chelmsford Country Club.
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