Worcester, Massachusetts
Overview
 
Worcester is a city
City
A city is a relatively large and permanent settlement. Although there is no agreement on how a city is distinguished from a town within general English language meanings, many cities have a particular administrative, legal, or historical status based on local law.For example, in the U.S...

 and the county seat
County seat
A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish. The term is primarily used in the United States....

 of Worcester County
Worcester County, Massachusetts
-Demographics:In 1990 Worcester County had a population of 709,705.As of the census of 2000, there were 750,963 people, 283,927 households, and 192,502 families residing in the county. The population density was 496 people per square mile . There were 298,159 housing units at an average density...

, Massachusetts
Massachusetts
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America. It is bordered by Rhode Island and Connecticut to the south, New York to the west, and Vermont and New Hampshire to the north; at its east lies the Atlantic Ocean. As of the 2010...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. Named after Worcester
Worcester
The City of Worcester, commonly known as Worcester, , is a city and county town of Worcestershire in the West Midlands of England. Worcester is situated some southwest of Birmingham and north of Gloucester, and has an approximate population of 94,000 people. The River Severn runs through the...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, as of the 2010 Census the city's population is 181,045, making it the second largest city in New England after Boston.
Worcester is located approximately 40 miles (64.4 km) west of Boston, and 38 miles (61.2 km) northeast of Springfield
Springfield, Massachusetts
Springfield is the most populous city in Western New England, and the seat of Hampden County, Massachusetts, United States. Springfield sits on the eastern bank of the Connecticut River near its confluence with three rivers; the western Westfield River, the eastern Chicopee River, and the eastern...

. Due to its location in central Massachusetts
Central Massachusetts
Central Massachusetts is the geographically central region of Massachusetts. Though definitions vary, most include all of Worcester County and the northwest corner of Middlesex County. Worcester, the largest city in the area and the seat of Worcester County, is often considered the cultural capital...

, amidst Massachusetts' major metropolitan regions, Worcester is known as the "Heart of the Commonwealth," thus, a heart is the official symbol of the city.

Worcester was considered its own region for centuries; however, with the encroachment of Boston's suburbs, it now marks the western periphery of the Boston-Worcester-Manchester (MA-RI-NH) U.S.
Encyclopedia
Worcester is a city
City
A city is a relatively large and permanent settlement. Although there is no agreement on how a city is distinguished from a town within general English language meanings, many cities have a particular administrative, legal, or historical status based on local law.For example, in the U.S...

 and the county seat
County seat
A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish. The term is primarily used in the United States....

 of Worcester County
Worcester County, Massachusetts
-Demographics:In 1990 Worcester County had a population of 709,705.As of the census of 2000, there were 750,963 people, 283,927 households, and 192,502 families residing in the county. The population density was 496 people per square mile . There were 298,159 housing units at an average density...

, Massachusetts
Massachusetts
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America. It is bordered by Rhode Island and Connecticut to the south, New York to the west, and Vermont and New Hampshire to the north; at its east lies the Atlantic Ocean. As of the 2010...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. Named after Worcester
Worcester
The City of Worcester, commonly known as Worcester, , is a city and county town of Worcestershire in the West Midlands of England. Worcester is situated some southwest of Birmingham and north of Gloucester, and has an approximate population of 94,000 people. The River Severn runs through the...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, as of the 2010 Census the city's population is 181,045, making it the second largest city in New England after Boston.
Worcester is located approximately 40 miles (64.4 km) west of Boston, and 38 miles (61.2 km) northeast of Springfield
Springfield, Massachusetts
Springfield is the most populous city in Western New England, and the seat of Hampden County, Massachusetts, United States. Springfield sits on the eastern bank of the Connecticut River near its confluence with three rivers; the western Westfield River, the eastern Chicopee River, and the eastern...

. Due to its location in central Massachusetts
Central Massachusetts
Central Massachusetts is the geographically central region of Massachusetts. Though definitions vary, most include all of Worcester County and the northwest corner of Middlesex County. Worcester, the largest city in the area and the seat of Worcester County, is often considered the cultural capital...

, amidst Massachusetts' major metropolitan regions, Worcester is known as the "Heart of the Commonwealth," thus, a heart is the official symbol of the city.

Worcester was considered its own region for centuries; however, with the encroachment of Boston's suburbs, it now marks the western periphery of the Boston-Worcester-Manchester (MA-RI-NH) U.S. Census Combined Statistical Area
Combined Statistical Area
The United States Office of Management and Budget defines micropolitan and metropolitan statistical areas. Metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas consist of one or more counties...

 (CSA) (Greater Boston
Greater Boston
Greater Boston is the area of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts surrounding the city of Boston. Due to ambiguity in usage, the size of the area referred to can be anywhere between that of the metropolitan statistical area of Boston and that of the city's combined statistical area which includes...

). The city features many fine examples of Victorian-era
Victorian architecture
The term Victorian architecture refers collectively to several architectural styles employed predominantly during the middle and late 19th century. The period that it indicates may slightly overlap the actual reign, 20 June 1837 – 22 January 1901, of Queen Victoria. This represents the British and...

 mill architecture
Mill town
A mill town, also known as factory town or mill village, is typically a settlement that developed around one or more mills or factories .- United Kingdom:...

.

History

The Pakachoag tribe of the Nipmuc nation of Native Americans
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

 were the indigenous settlers of the area. They called it Quinsigamond, meaning "fishing place for pickerel
American pickerel
The American pickerels are two subspecies of Esox americanus, a species of freshwater fish in the pike family of order Esociformes: the redfin pickerel, E. americanus americanus Gmelin, 1789, and the grass pickerel, E. americanus vermiculatus Lesueur, 1846.Both subspecies are native to North America...

." Lake Quinsigamond
Lake Quinsigamond
Lake Quinsigamond is a body of water situated between the city of Worcester and the town of Shrewsbury in Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA. It is 4 miles long, between 50 and 85 feet deep, and has a surface area of approximately 772 acres . Lake Quinsigamond hosts 8 islands with the...

 provided fine hunting
Hunting
Hunting is the practice of pursuing any living thing, usually wildlife, for food, recreation, or trade. In present-day use, the term refers to lawful hunting, as distinguished from poaching, which is the killing, trapping or capture of the hunted species contrary to applicable law...

 and fishing
Fishing
Fishing is the activity of trying to catch wild fish. Fish are normally caught in the wild. Techniques for catching fish include hand gathering, spearing, netting, angling and trapping....

 grounds a short distance from their main village near a spring
Spring (hydrosphere)
A spring—also known as a rising or resurgence—is a component of the hydrosphere. Specifically, it is any natural situation where water flows to the surface of the earth from underground...

 on Pakachoag Hill in what is now Auburn
Auburn, Massachusetts
Auburn is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 16,188 at the 2010 census.- History :Auburn was first settled in 1789 and was officially incorporated in 1808 as the town of Ward, in honor of American Revolution General Artemas Ward...

. Mt. Wachusett was their sacred place.

Worcester was first settled by the English
English people
The English are a nation and ethnic group native to England, who speak English. The English identity is of early mediaeval origin, when they were known in Old English as the Anglecynn. England is now a country of the United Kingdom, and the majority of English people in England are British Citizens...

 in 1673, along the Upper Boston Post Road
Boston Post Road
The Boston Post Road was a system of mail-delivery routes between New York City and Boston, Massachusetts that evolved into the first major highways in the United States.The three major alignments were the Lower Post Road The Boston Post Road was a system of mail-delivery routes between New York...

. The modest settlement of six or seven houses was burned to the ground during King Philip's War
King Philip's War
King Philip's War, sometimes called Metacom's War, Metacomet's War, or Metacom's Rebellion, was an armed conflict between Native American inhabitants of present-day southern New England and English colonists and their Native American allies in 1675–76. The war is named after the main leader of the...

 on December 2, 1675, when settlers were either killed or driven off. The town was subsequently resettled and was incorporated in 1684. On September 10 of that year, Daniel Gookin
Daniel Gookin
Major-General Daniel Gookin was a settler of Virginia and Massachusetts, and a writer on the subject of American Indians.-Early life:...

 and others petitioned to have the town's name officially changed from Quinsigamond to Worcester. However, its inhabitants were still vulnerable to attack, and some, such as Samuel Lenorson Jr., were taken hostage by natives during the 1690s. When Queen Anne's War
Queen Anne's War
Queen Anne's War , as the North American theater of the War of the Spanish Succession was known in the British colonies, was the second in a series of French and Indian Wars fought between France and England, later Great Britain, in North America for control of the continent. The War of the...

 started in 1702, the town was again abandoned by its English inhabitants except for Diggory Sargent. Sargent was later tomahawked
Tomahawk (axe)
A tomahawk is a type of axe native to North America, traditionally resembling a hatchet with a straight shaft. The name came into the English language in the 17th century as a transliteration of the Powhatan word.Tomahawks were general purpose tools used by Native Americans and European Colonials...

, as was his wife, who was too weak to make the journey on foot to Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

. Their children were taken to Canada and survived.

In 1713, Worcester was resettled for the third time, permanently, by Jonas Rice
Jonas Rice
Jonas Rice was the first permanent settler of European descent in Worcester, Massachusetts, and was a founder and prominent citizen of the town...

 (1673–1753). Jonas Rice held many offices and was selected as a judge in the Court of Common Pleas for Worcester County
Worcester County, Massachusetts
-Demographics:In 1990 Worcester County had a population of 709,705.As of the census of 2000, there were 750,963 people, 283,927 households, and 192,502 families residing in the county. The population density was 496 people per square mile . There were 298,159 housing units at an average density...

. His farm was located atop Union Hill and a commemorative Massachusetts Tercentenary historic marker stands as a reminder where Plantation St. and Massasoit Rd. intersect.

Named after the historic city of Worcester
Worcester
The City of Worcester, commonly known as Worcester, , is a city and county town of Worcestershire in the West Midlands of England. Worcester is situated some southwest of Birmingham and north of Gloucester, and has an approximate population of 94,000 people. The River Severn runs through the...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, Worcester was incorporated as a town on June 14, 1722 and chartered as a city on February 29, 1848. When the government of Worcester County was established on April 2, 1731, Worcester was chosen as shire town (later known as a county seat
County seat
A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish. The term is primarily used in the United States....

). From that date until the dissolution of the county government on July 1, 1998, it was the only county seat.

As political tensions rose in the months before the Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

, Worcester served as a center of revolutionary activity. Because it was an important munitions depot, Worcester was targeted for attack by Loyalist
Loyalist (American Revolution)
Loyalists were American colonists who remained loyal to the Kingdom of Great Britain during the American Revolutionary War. At the time they were often called Tories, Royalists, or King's Men. They were opposed by the Patriots, those who supported the revolution...

 general Thomas Gage
Thomas Gage
Thomas Gage was a British general, best known for his many years of service in North America, including his role as military commander in the early days of the American War of Independence....

. However, officers sent secretly to inspect the munitions depot were discovered by Patriot
Patriot (American Revolution)
Patriots is a name often used to describe the colonists of the British Thirteen United Colonies who rebelled against British control during the American Revolution. It was their leading figures who, in July 1776, declared the United States of America an independent nation...

 Timothy Bigelow. General Gage then decided to move on to the second munitions depot in Lexington
Lexington, Massachusetts
Lexington is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 31,399 at the 2010 census. This town is famous for being the site of the first shot of the American Revolution, in the Battle of Lexington on April 19, 1775.- History :...

. In 1775, determining that Boston
Boston
Boston is the capital of and largest city in Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is regarded as the unofficial "Capital of New England" for its economic and cultural impact on the entire New England region. The city proper had...

 was too dangerous, Isaiah Thomas
Isaiah Thomas
Isaiah Thomas , was an American newspaper publisher and author. He performed the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence in Worcester, Massachusetts and reported the first account of the Battles of Lexington and Concord...

 moved his newspaper, the Massachusetts Spy
Massachusetts Spy
The Massachusetts Spy was a newspaper published by Isaiah Thomas in Boston and Worcester, Massachusetts in the 18th century.-Further reading:...

, to Worcester. The Massachusetts Spy was one of the few papers published continuously during the Revolution. On July 14, 1776, Isaiah Thomas, intercepting the packet from Philadelphia to Boston, performed the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence
Declaration of independence
A declaration of independence is an assertion of the independence of an aspiring state or states. Such places are usually declared from part or all of the territory of another nation or failed nation, or are breakaway territories from within the larger state...

 ever in front of Worcester City Hall
Worcester City Hall and Common
Main Street facade|thumbnail|left|150pxWorcester City Hall and Common is a historic city hall and town common at 455 Main Street in Worcester, Massachusetts.The Common, established in 1669, originally encompassed about of land compared to its at present...

. In 1812, Thomas founded the American Antiquarian Society
American Antiquarian Society
The American Antiquarian Society , located in Worcester, Massachusetts, is both a learned society and national research library of pre-twentieth century American History and culture. Its main building, known also as Antiquarian Hall, is a U.S. National Historic Landmark...

, a research library holding nearly two-thirds of the items known to have been printed in America from 1639 through 1820. The Society's holdings from 1821 to 1876 compare favorably with those of the Library of Congress
Library of Congress
The Library of Congress is the research library of the United States Congress, de facto national library of the United States, and the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. Located in three buildings in Washington, D.C., it is the largest library in the world by shelf space and...

 and other major research libraries.

Known for innovation in commerce
Commerce
While business refers to the value-creating activities of an organization for profit, commerce means the whole system of an economy that constitutes an environment for business. The system includes legal, economic, political, social, cultural, and technological systems that are in operation in any...

, industry
Industry
Industry refers to the production of an economic good or service within an economy.-Industrial sectors:There are four key industrial economic sectors: the primary sector, largely raw material extraction industries such as mining and farming; the secondary sector, involving refining, construction,...

, education
Education
Education in its broadest, general sense is the means through which the aims and habits of a group of people lives on from one generation to the next. Generally, it occurs through any experience that has a formative effect on the way one thinks, feels, or acts...

, and social thought, Worcester and the nearby Blackstone Valley
Blackstone Valley
The Blackstone Valley or Blackstone River Valley is a region of Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It was a major contributor to the American Industrial Revolution...

 were major contributors to the American Industrial Revolution
Industrial Revolution
The Industrial Revolution was a period from the 18th to the 19th century where major changes in agriculture, manufacturing, mining, transportation, and technology had a profound effect on the social, economic and cultural conditions of the times...

. Ichabod Washburn
Ichabod Washburn
Ichabod Washburn was a church deacon and industrialist from Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA. His financial endowments led to the naming of Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas and the foundation of Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts.Washburn became an apprentice in...

, an early industrialist, developed a process for extruding steel wire. His company, Washburn & Moen, founded in 1831, was "the company that 'barbed-wire
Barbed wire
Barbed wire, also known as barb wire , is a type of fencing wire constructed with sharp edges or points arranged at intervals along the strand. It is used to construct inexpensive fences and is used atop walls surrounding secured property...

 fenced the American West
American Old West
The American Old West, or the Wild West, comprises the history, geography, people, lore, and cultural expression of life in the Western United States, most often referring to the latter half of the 19th century, between the American Civil War and the end of the century...

,'" and held the battle lines during World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

. In 1840, Loring Coes invented the monkey wrench
Monkey wrench
The monkey wrench is an adjustable wrench, a later American development of eighteenth century English coach wrenches. It was popular in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries but is now used only for heavier tasks, having been mostly replaced by the lighter and sleeker shifting adjustable or...

. In the 1850s, George Crompton and L.J. & F.B. Knowles founded companies that manufactured textile
Textile
A textile or cloth is a flexible woven material consisting of a network of natural or artificial fibres often referred to as thread or yarn. Yarn is produced by spinning raw fibres of wool, flax, cotton, or other material to produce long strands...

 loom
Loom
A loom is a device used to weave cloth. The basic purpose of any loom is to hold the warp threads under tension to facilitate the interweaving of the weft threads...

s which drove the Industrial Revolution. Another Worcester innovator, physician Russel Howes, invented the first envelope
Envelope
An envelope is a common packaging item, usually made of thin flat material. It is designed to contain a flat object, such as a letter or card....

 folding machine in 1856. It could produce 25,000 envelopes in ten hours, using three operators.

Women found economic opportunity in Worcester. An early female entrepreneur, Esther Howland
Esther Howland
Esther Howland was an artist and businesswoman who is responsible for popularizing Valentine's Day greeting cards in America.After her graduation from Mount Holyoke College in 1847, Howland received an ornate English Valentine from a business associate of her father when she was 19 years old...

, designed and manufactured the first American valentine cards in 1847. Women also found opportunity in The Royal Worcester Corset Factory, a company that provided employment opportunity for 1200 women; it was the largest employer of women in the United States in 1908.

Several entrepreneurs brought growth to Worcester's economy during this period. John Jeppson, a skilled potter
Pottery
Pottery is the material from which the potteryware is made, of which major types include earthenware, stoneware and porcelain. The place where such wares are made is also called a pottery . Pottery also refers to the art or craft of the potter or the manufacture of pottery...

, emigrated from Hoganas
Höganäs
Höganäs is a locality and the seat of Höganäs Municipality, Skåne County, Sweden with 13,550 inhabitants in 2005.Höganäs is nationally known for its ceramics industry, Höganäs Keramik. Höganäs Keramik is part of Iittala Group....

, Sweden
Sweden
Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

, to Worcester in search of a better life. In Worcester he founded Norton Company, now Saint-Gobain
Saint-Gobain
Saint-Gobain S.A. is a French multinational corporation, founded in 1665 in Paris and headquartered on the outskirts of Paris at La Défense and in Courbevoie. Originally a mirror manufacturer, it now also produces a variety of construction and high-performance materials.The company has its head...

, the world's largest manufacturer and supplier of performance engineered abrasive
Abrasive
An abrasive is a material, often a mineral, that is used to shape or finish a workpiece through rubbing which leads to part of the workpiece being worn away...

s for technical manufacturing and commercial applications, in addition to general household and automotive refinishing. Jeppson created economic opportunity for the thousands of his countrymen who followed him to Worcester, and others. Many Irish
Irish people
The Irish people are an ethnic group who originate in Ireland, an island in northwestern Europe. Ireland has been populated for around 9,000 years , with the Irish people's earliest ancestors recorded having legends of being descended from groups such as the Nemedians, Fomorians, Fir Bolg, Tuatha...

 immigrants settled in Worcester during this period, as well. They helped build the railroad and Blackstone Canal
Blackstone Canal
The Blackstone Canal was a waterway linking Worcester, Massachusetts, to Providence, Rhode Island through the Blackstone Valley via a series of locks and canals during the early 19th century.-History:...

, further driving Worcester's economic engine.

An innovative form of affordable housing appeared in the 19th century: the three-decker
Triple decker
A triple-decker is a three-story apartment building, typically of light-framed, wood construction, where each floor usually consists of a single apartment; although two apartments per floor is not uncommon....

. Hundreds of these houses were built, affording capacious, comfortable apartments for a homeowner and two tenants. Many extended families settled in these houses, developing safe, stable neighborhoods for city factory workers.

In December 1999, the Worcester Cold Storage Warehouse fire
Worcester Cold Storage Warehouse fire
The Worcester Cold Storage Warehouse fire was a fire that began on December 3, 1999, in Worcester, Massachusetts. It started when two homeless and mentally disabled people, Thomas Levesque and Julie Ann Barnes, who were living inside the warehouse, knocked over a candle after an argument earlier in...

 received national attention. Two homeless people, deemed mentally disabled, accidentally knocked over a lit candle in an abandoned cold storage warehouse, igniting a conflagration. Six firefighters lost their lives in an attempt to rescue the homeless people. This fire was one of the worst firefighting tragedies of the late 20th century. President Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton
William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton is an American politician who served as the 42nd President of the United States from 1993 to 2001. Inaugurated at age 46, he was the third-youngest president. He took office at the end of the Cold War, and was the first president of the baby boomer generation...

, Vice President Al Gore
Al Gore
Albert Arnold "Al" Gore, Jr. served as the 45th Vice President of the United States , under President Bill Clinton. He was the Democratic Party's nominee for President in the 2000 U.S. presidential election....

, and other local and national dignitaries attended services and a memorial program.

The first decade of the 21st century saw the closing and creation of major cultural institutions in the city. In April 2006, the Worcester Common Outlets
Worcester Common Outlets
The Worcester Common Outlets, located off Interstate 290 in Downtown Worcester, Massachusetts, is a vacant two level shopping mall which originally opened on July 29, 1971 as the Worcester Center Galleria...

, a 1000000 square feet (92,903 m²) mall that occupies a large swath of downtown Worcester, was set to be demolished to make way for the long-planned "City Square," a multi-use collaboration of several downtown buildings for commercial, retail, and residential use. The Worcester Foothills Theatre
Worcester Foothills Theatre
The Worcester Foothills Theatre was a professional theater company and venue in Worcester, Massachusetts that performed a variety of plays, Musicals, and Musical Reviews.-History:...

, formerly located in the Outlets, "suspended operations" on May 10, 2009, due to lack of funding. It is unclear if it will ever reopen. In March 2008, the Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts
Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts
The Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts in Worcester, Massachusetts, United States was originally built in 1904 as the Franklin Square Theatre regularly scheduling burlesque shows, Broadway touring shows and headline acts transitioning to showing silent films by 1912 when vaudeville magnate...

 opened as a venue for touring Broadway-style shows.

Geography

Worcester is located at the center of mass
Center of mass
In physics, the center of mass or barycenter of a system is the average location of all of its mass. In the case of a rigid body, the position of the center of mass is fixed in relation to the body...

 of Massachusetts, which is at 42°16′8"N 71°48′14"W (42.268843, −71.803774).
According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 38.6 square miles (100 km²), of which 37.6 square miles (97.4 km²) are land and 1 square miles (2.6 km²) 2.59%) are water-covered. Worcester is bordered by the towns of Auburn
Auburn, Massachusetts
Auburn is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 16,188 at the 2010 census.- History :Auburn was first settled in 1789 and was officially incorporated in 1808 as the town of Ward, in honor of American Revolution General Artemas Ward...

, Grafton
Grafton, Massachusetts
Grafton is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 17,765 at the 2010 census. Grafton is the home of a Nipmuc village known as Hassanamisco Reservation, the Willard House and Clock Museum, and the Tufts University Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine...

, Holden
Holden, Massachusetts
Holden is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The town was founded in 1741, and the Town Square was donated by John Hancock, former Governor of Massachusetts.The population was 17,346 at the 2010 census.-Geography:...

, Leicester
Leicester, Massachusetts
Leicester is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 10,970 at the 2010 census.-History:Leicester was first settled in 1713 and was officially incorporated in 1714....

, Millbury
Millbury, Massachusetts
Millbury is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 13,261 at the 2010 census. The town is part of the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor.-History:...

, Paxton
Paxton, Massachusetts
Paxton is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 4,806 at the 2010 census.-History:Paxton was first settled in 1749 and was officially incorporated in 1765....

, Shrewsbury
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 31,640 people, 12,366 households, and 8,693 families residing in the town. The population density was . There were 12,696 housing units at an average density of...

, and West Boylston
West Boylston, Massachusetts
-Library:The West Boylston public library was established in 1878. In fiscal year 2008, the town of West Boylston spent 1.6% of its budget on its public library—some $37 per person.-External links:******...

. These towns serve as some of the bedroom communities and suburbs of the greater Worcester area.

The Blackstone River
Blackstone Valley
The Blackstone Valley or Blackstone River Valley is a region of Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It was a major contributor to the American Industrial Revolution...

 passes through Worcester. Its headwaters are found in Institute Park
Institute Park
Institute Park is a public park in Worcester, Massachusetts. Founded on donated land in 1887, it is located next to the campus of Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The park is in size....

. The river courses underground through the center of the city, and emerges at the foot of College Hill, flowing through Quinsigamond Village and into Millbury. Water Street, originally the Blackstone Canal, is emerging as the center of the "Canal District." Legend has it that the city sits atop seven hills: Airport Hill, Bancroft Hill, Belmont Hill (Bell Hill), Grafton Hill
Grafton Hill
Grafton Hill refers to one of the seven hills of Worcester, Massachusetts, the second largest city in New England. Just as in Rome, Italy, there are seven hills that distinguish its topographic neighborhoods and Grafton Hill is one of the more prominent areas in the city. Grafton Hill is in the...

, Green Hill, Pakachoag Hill and Vernon Hill. Actually, there are more than seven hills. Others include Indian Hill, Newton Hill, Poet's Hill, and Wigwam Hill, among others. Worcester's lakes include Lake Quinsigamond
Lake Quinsigamond
Lake Quinsigamond is a body of water situated between the city of Worcester and the town of Shrewsbury in Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA. It is 4 miles long, between 50 and 85 feet deep, and has a surface area of approximately 772 acres . Lake Quinsigamond hosts 8 islands with the...

, the site of rowing
Sport rowing
Rowing is a sport in which athletes race against each other on rivers, on lakes or on the ocean, depending upon the type of race and the discipline. The boats are propelled by the reaction forces on the oar blades as they are pushed against the water...

 competitions, Indian Lake
Indian Lake (Massachusetts)
Indian Lake, also known as North Pond, is located in northern Worcester, Massachusetts. The water is brownish in color with a transparency of only five feet. The mean and maximum depths are eight and fifteen feet respectively. The bottom is muck and rock...

, Bell Pond, and Coes Pond.

Worcester counts within its borders over 1200 acres (4.9 km²) of publicly owned property. Elm Park
Elm Park (Worcester, Massachusetts)
Elm Park is a historic park in Worcester, Massachusetts.The land the park resides on was purchased in 1854, making it one of the first purchases of land to be set aside for use as a public park in the United States. Elm Park originally consisted of the land bordered by Park Aveune, Russel Street,...

, purchased in 1854 and laid out by Frederick Law Olmsted
Frederick Law Olmsted
Frederick Law Olmsted was an American journalist, social critic, public administrator, and landscape designer. He is popularly considered to be the father of American landscape architecture, although many scholars have bestowed that title upon Andrew Jackson Downing...

, was not only the first public park in the city (after the 8-acre (32,000 m²) City Common from 1669) but also one of the first public parks in the U.S. Both the City Common and Elm Park are listed in the National Register of Historic Places
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

. In 1903 the Green family donated 549 acres (2.2 km²) of Green Hill area land to the city, making Green Hill Park
Green Hill Park
Green Hill Park is a large public park in Worcester, Massachusetts. The largest in the city, the park covers over . It is home to the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans' Memorial, which honors veterans of the Vietnam War from Massachusetts. The Memorial was opened in June 2002. It is home to the Green...

 the largest in the city. Green Hill Park Shelter
Green Hill Park Shelter
Green Hill Park Shelter is an historic shelter on Green Hill Parkway in Worcester, Massachusetts.It was built in 1910 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980....

, built in 1910, is on the National Register of Historic Places
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

. In June 2002, city and state leaders dedicated the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the Green Hill Park grounds. Other parks include: Newton Hill, East Park, Morgan Park, Shore Park, Crompton Park, Hadwen Park, and University Park
University Park (Worcester, Massachusetts)
University Park also called Crystal Park is a public park in the Main South neighborhood of Worcester, Massachusetts. The park was acquired by the City from 1887-1889, costing nearly 62,000 dollars. It is located across Main Street from Clark University, thus the name...

.

Climate

Worcester's continental climate
Continental climate
Continental climate is a climate characterized by important annual variation in temperature due to the lack of significant bodies of water nearby...

 is typical of the New England
New England
New England is a region in the northeastern corner of the United States consisting of the six states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut...

 region. The weather changes rapidly owing to the confluence of warm, humid air from the southwest; cool, dry air from the north; and the moderating influence of the Atlantic Ocean to the east. Summers are typically warm and humid, while winters are cold, windy, and snowy. New Englanders expect snow as early as October (rarely), and as late as May. The USDA
United States Department of Agriculture
The United States Department of Agriculture is the United States federal executive department responsible for developing and executing U.S. federal government policy on farming, agriculture, and food...

 classifies the city as hardiness zone
Hardiness zone
A hardiness zone is a geographically defined area in which a specific category of plant life is capable of growing, as defined by climatic conditions, including its ability to withstand the minimum temperatures of the zone...

 5.

The hottest month is July, with a 24-hour average of 70.1 °F (21.2 °C), while the coldest is January, at 23.6 °F (-4.7 °C). Periods exceeding 90 °F (32 °C) in summer and below 10 °F (-12 °C) in winter are not uncommon, but rarely prolonged. The all-time record high temperature is 102 °F (39 °C), recorded on July 4, 1911. The all-time record low temperature is −24 °F, recorded on February 16, 1943.

The city averages 49.1 inches (1,247.1 mm) of precipitation
Precipitation (meteorology)
In meteorology, precipitation In meteorology, precipitation In meteorology, precipitation (also known as one of the classes of hydrometeors, which are atmospheric water phenomena is any product of the condensation of atmospheric water vapor that falls under gravity. The main forms of precipitation...

 a year, as well as an average of 67.2 inches (170.7 cm) of snowfall a season, receiving far more snow than coastal locations less than 40 miles (64.4 km) away. Massachusetts' geographic location, jutting out into the North Atlantic, also makes the city very prone to Nor'easter
Nor'easter
A nor'easter is a type of macro-scale storm along the East Coast of the United States and Atlantic Canada, so named because the storm travels to the northeast from the south and the winds come from the northeast, especially in the coastal areas of the Northeastern United States and Atlantic Canada...

 weather systems that can dump more than 50 inches (127 cm) of snow on the region in one storm event.

While rare, the city has had its share of extreme weather. On September 21, 1938, the city was hit by the brutal New England Hurricane of 1938
New England Hurricane of 1938
The New England Hurricane of 1938 was the first major hurricane to strike New England since 1869...

. Fifteen years later, Worcester was hit by a tornado that killed 94 people. The deadliest tornado in New England history, it damaged a large part of the city and surrounding towns. It struck Assumption Preparatory School
Assumption Preparatory School
Assumption Preparatory School was an American secondary boarding school located in Worcester, Massachusetts, and operated by the Catholic order Augustinians of the Assumption...

, now the site of Quinsigamond Community College
Quinsigamond Community College
Quinsigamond Community College is a public, two-year academic institution in Worcester, Massachusetts. A commuter school, the college has an enrollment of over 8,000 students in its Associate's degree and certification programs...

.


Neighborhoods

  • North Worcester
    • Greendale
    • Burncoat
    • Summit
    • Indian Hill
    • Indian Lake
      Indian Lake (Massachusetts)
      Indian Lake, also known as North Pond, is located in northern Worcester, Massachusetts. The water is brownish in color with a transparency of only five feet. The mean and maximum depths are eight and fifteen feet respectively. The bottom is muck and rock...

  • Lincoln Street
  • Green Hill Park
    Green Hill Park
    Green Hill Park is a large public park in Worcester, Massachusetts. The largest in the city, the park covers over . It is home to the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans' Memorial, which honors veterans of the Vietnam War from Massachusetts. The Memorial was opened in June 2002. It is home to the Green...

  • West Side
    • Tatnuck
    • West Tatnuck
    • Mill Street
    • Worcester Airport
  • Park Ave
  • Downtown
    • Lincoln Square
    • Federal Square
  • Shrewsbury Street
  • Lake Avenue/Quinsigamond Lake
  • Bell Hill
  • Grafton Hill
    Grafton Hill
    Grafton Hill refers to one of the seven hills of Worcester, Massachusetts, the second largest city in New England. Just as in Rome, Italy, there are seven hills that distinguish its topographic neighborhoods and Grafton Hill is one of the more prominent areas in the city. Grafton Hill is in the...

  • Vernon Hill
    • Kelley Square/Water Street
    • Green Island(a.k.a.the island)
  • College Hill
  • Quinsigamond Village
  • South Worcester
    • Main South
      Main South
      Main South is a neighborhood in southern Worcester, Massachusetts. The area is based around Main Street, the central roadway of the city...

    • Cambridge Street
    • Webster Square
  • Plantation Street
  • Sunderland/Massasoit Road/Rice Square
  • Edgemere

Demographics

Successive waves of immigrants have in the past formed coherent ethnic enclaves, some of which continue to contribute to the rich ethnic texture of Worcester today. Swedes settled in Quinsigamond Village and Greendale, Italians settled along Shrewsbury Street, Irish and Poles settled around Kelly Square, Lithuanians settled on Vernon Hill, and Jews built their first synagogue on Grafton Hill. The African-American community has existed since colonial times. Since the late 19th century, Grafton Hill and Vernon Hill have been points of entry for immigrants from all over the world: Irish
Irish people
The Irish people are an ethnic group who originate in Ireland, an island in northwestern Europe. Ireland has been populated for around 9,000 years , with the Irish people's earliest ancestors recorded having legends of being descended from groups such as the Nemedians, Fomorians, Fir Bolg, Tuatha...

, Italians, Lithuanians, Poles, Syrians, Lebanese, Indians, Puerto Ricans, French Canadians, and more recently, Albanians and Brazilians. Other prominent groups include Russians, Armenians, Greeks, Vietnamese, Liberians, and Congolese.
According to the 2010 Census, Worcester had a population of 181,045, of which 88,150 (48.7%) were male and 92,895 (51.3%) were female. In terms of age, 77.9% were over 18 years old and 11.7% were over 65 years old; the median age is 33.4 years. The median age for males is 32.1 years and 34.7 years for females.

In terms of race and ethnicity, Worcester's population was 69.4% White, 11.6% Black or African American, 0.4% American Indian and Alaska Native, 6.1% Asian (3.0% Vietnamese, 0.9% Chinese, and 0.8% Asian Indian), <0.1% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander, 8.4% from Some Other Race, and 4.0% from Two or More Races (1.2% White and Black or African American; 1.0% White and Some Other Race). Hispanics and Latinos of any race made up 20.9% of the population (12.7% Puerto Rican).

Government

Worcester is governed by a Council-manager government
Council-manager government
The council–manager government form is one of two predominant forms of municipal government in the United States; the other common form of local government is the mayor-council government form, which characteristically occurs in large cities...

 with a popularly elected mayor
Mayor
In many countries, a Mayor is the highest ranking officer in the municipal government of a town or a large urban city....

. A city council
City council
A city council or town council is the legislative body that governs a city, town, municipality or local government area.-Australia & NZ:Because of the differences in legislation between the States, the exact definition of a City Council varies...

 acts as the legislative body, and the council-appointed manager handles the traditional day-to-day chief executive functions.

City councilors can run as either a representative of a city district or as an at-large candidate. The winning at-large candidate who receives the greatest number of votes for mayor becomes the mayor (at-large councilor candidates must ask to be removed from the ballot for mayor if they do not want to be listed on the mayoral ballot). As a result, voters must vote for their mayoral candidate twice, once as an at-large councilor, and once as the mayor. The mayor has no more authority than other city councilors, but is the ceremonial head of the city and chair of the city council and school committee. Currently, there are 11 councilors: 6 at-large and 5 district.

Worcester's first charter
Charter
A charter is the grant of authority or rights, stating that the granter formally recognizes the prerogative of the recipient to exercise the rights specified...

, which went into effect in 1848, established a Mayor/Bicameral
Bicameralism
In the government, bicameralism is the practice of having two legislative or parliamentary chambers. Thus, a bicameral parliament or bicameral legislature is a legislature which consists of two chambers or houses....

 form of government. Together, the two chambers — the 11-member Board of Aldermen
Alderman
An alderman is a member of a municipal assembly or council in many jurisdictions founded upon English law. The term may be titular, denoting a high-ranking member of a borough or county council, a council member chosen by the elected members themselves rather than by popular vote, or a council...

 and the 30-member Common Council — were vested with complete legislative powers. The mayor handled all administrative departments, though appointments to those departments had to be approved by the two-chamber City Council.

Seeking to replace the old, outdated charter, Worcester voters in November 1947 approved a change to Plan E municipal government. In effect from January 1949 until November 1985, this charter (as outlined in chapter 43 of the Massachusetts General Laws) established City Council/City Manager government. This type of governance, with modifications, has survived to the present day.

Initially, Plan E government in Worcester was organized as a 9-member council (all at-large), a ceremonial mayor elected from the council by the councilors, and a council-appointed city manager. The manager oversees the daily administration of the city, makes all appointments to city offices, and can be removed at any time by a majority vote of the Council. The mayor chairs the city council and the school committee, and does not have the power to veto any vote.

In 1983, Worcester voters again decided to change the city charter. This "Home Rule" charter (named for the method of adoption of the charter) is similar to Plan E, the major changes being to the structure of the council and the election of the mayor. The 9-member Council became 11, 6 at-large and 1 from each city district. The mayor is chosen by popular election, but must run as an at-large councilor.

Politics

Worcester's history of social progressivism includes a number of temperance
Temperance movement
A temperance movement is a social movement urging reduced use of alcoholic beverages. Temperance movements may criticize excessive alcohol use, promote complete abstinence , or pressure the government to enact anti-alcohol legislation or complete prohibition of alcohol.-Temperance movement by...

 and abolitionist movements. It was also a leader in the women's suffrage
Women's suffrage
Women's suffrage or woman suffrage is the right of women to vote and to run for office. The expression is also used for the economic and political reform movement aimed at extending these rights to women and without any restrictions or qualifications such as property ownership, payment of tax, or...

 movement: The first national convention advocating women's rights was held in Worcester, October 23–24, 1850.

Two of the nation’s most radical (and often despised) abolitionists, Abby Kelley
Abby Kelley
Abby Kelley Foster was an American abolitionist and radical social reformer active from the 1830s to 1870s. She became a fundraiser, lecturer and committee organizer for the influential American Anti-Slavery Society, where she worked closely with William Lloyd Garrison and other radicals...

 Foster and her husband Stephen S. Foster, adopted Worcester as their home, as did Thomas Wentworth Higginson
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
Thomas Wentworth Higginson was an American Unitarian minister, author, abolitionist, and soldier. He was active in the American Abolitionism movement during the 1840s and 1850s, identifying himself with disunion and militant abolitionism...

, the editor of The Atlantic Monthly and Emily Dickinson
Emily Dickinson
Emily Elizabeth Dickinson was an American poet. Born in Amherst, Massachusetts, to a successful family with strong community ties, she lived a mostly introverted and reclusive life...

's avuncular correspondent, and Unitarian minister Rev. Edward Everett Hale
Edward Everett Hale
Edward Everett Hale was an American author, historian and Unitarian clergyman. He was a child prodigy who exhibited extraordinary literary skills and at age thirteen was enrolled at Harvard University where he graduated second in his class...

.

The area was already home to Lucy Stone
Lucy Stone
Lucy Stone was a prominent American abolitionist and suffragist, and a vocal advocate and organizer promoting rights for women. In 1847, Stone was the first woman from Massachusetts to earn a college degree. She spoke out for women's rights and against slavery at a time when women were discouraged...

, Eli Thayer
Eli Thayer
Eli Thayer was a member of the United States House of Representatives from 1857 to 1861. Thayer was born in Mendon, Massachusetts. He graduated from Worcester Academy in 1840, from Brown University in 1845, and in 1848 founded Oread Institute, a school for young women in Worcester, Massachusetts...

, and Samuel May, Jr. They were joined in their political activities by networks of related Quaker families such as the Earles and the Chases, whose organizing efforts were crucial to the anti-slavery cause in central Massachusetts and throughout New England.

Anarchist Emma Goldman
Emma Goldman
Emma Goldman was an anarchist known for her political activism, writing and speeches. She played a pivotal role in the development of anarchist political philosophy in North America and Europe in the first half of the twentieth century....

 and two others opened an ice cream shop in 1892. "It was spring and not yet warm," Goldman later wrote, "but the coffee I brewed, our sandwiches, and dainty dishes were beginning to be appreciated. Within a short time we were able to invest in a soda-water fountain and some lovely coloured dishes."

On October 19, 1924, the largest gathering of the Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan
Ku Klux Klan, often abbreviated KKK and informally known as the Klan, is the name of three distinct past and present far-right organizations in the United States, which have advocated extremist reactionary currents such as white supremacy, white nationalism, and anti-immigration, historically...

 ever held in New England took place at the Agricultural Fairgrounds in Worcester. Klansmen in sheets and hoods, new Knights awaiting a mass induction ceremony, and supporters swelled the crowd to 15,000. The KKK had hired more than 400 "husky guards," but when the rally ended around midnight, a riot broke out. Klansmen's cars were stoned and burned, and their windows smashed. KKK members were pulled from their cars and beaten. Klansmen called for police protection, but the situation raged out of control for most of the night. The violence after the "Klanvocation" had the desired effect: Membership fell off, and no further public Klan meetings were held in Worcester.

Robert Stoddard, owner of The Telegram and Gazette, was one of the founders of the John Birch Society
John Birch Society
The John Birch Society is an American political advocacy group that supports anti-communism, limited government, a Constitutional Republic and personal freedom. It has been described as radical right-wing....

.

Sixties radical Abbie Hoffman
Abbie Hoffman
Abbot Howard "Abbie" Hoffman was a political and social activist who co-founded the Youth International Party ....

 was born in Worcester in 1936 and spent more than half of his life there. Until he was 30, Worcester was the center of his universe; when he moved to New York in 1966, Worcester remained a haven. Even during his years as a fugitive, he would slip back into town and gather with old friends at his favorite restaurant, El Morocco. Biographer and friend Jonah Raskin
Jonah Raskin
Jonah Raskin is an American writer who left an East Coast university teaching position to participate in the 1970s radical counterculture as a free-lance journalist, then returned to the academy in California in the 1980s to write probing studies of Abbie Hoffman and Allen Ginsberg and reviews of...

 explains that "Worcester provided him with his view of society and his way of dealing with the world."
Voter registration and party enrollment as of October 15, 2008
Party Number of voters Percentage
Democratic
Democratic Party (United States)
The Democratic Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Republican Party. The party's socially liberal and progressive platform is largely considered center-left in the U.S. political spectrum. The party has the lengthiest record of continuous...

46,395 44.99%
Republican
Republican Party (United States)
The Republican Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Democratic Party. Founded by anti-slavery expansion activists in 1854, it is often called the GOP . The party's platform generally reflects American conservatism in the U.S...

9,980 9.68%
Unaffiliated 45,704 44.32%
Minor Parties 1,036 1.00%
Total 103,115 100%

Economy

Historically, Worcester's economic roots were tied to the Blackstone River
Blackstone River
The Blackstone River is a river in the U.S. states of Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It flows approximately 48 mi and drains a watershed of approximately 540 sq. mi...

, and in the beginning to the Blackstone Canal
Blackstone Canal
The Blackstone Canal was a waterway linking Worcester, Massachusetts, to Providence, Rhode Island through the Blackstone Valley via a series of locks and canals during the early 19th century.-History:...

, which connected Worcester to the port of Providence, Rhode Island
Providence, Rhode Island
Providence is the capital and most populous city of Rhode Island and was one of the first cities established in the United States. Located in Providence County, it is the third largest city in the New England region...

. Textiles, shoes, and finished clothing were some of the first industries in the city. A second wave of manufacturing facilities soon came on the scene to further develop Worcester into a manufacturing center. Wire and machinery were the strengths of this economic cycle. One of the leaders of this manufacturing wave was George F. Fuller
George F. Fuller
George F. Fuller was a 20th century industrialist in Worcester, MA, though he became most famous through his philanthropic foundation.-Life:...

, an inventor and philanthropist, who developed a heat-treating process crucial to developing steel strong enough to be used in train couplings and the first automobile crankshafts. His company, Wyman-Gordon, has been a leading manufacturer of machine parts.
Charles Palmer
Charles Palmer
Charles Henry Palmer was an English cricketer, who played for Leicestershire and Worcestershire from 1938 to 1959. Palmer also played one Test match for England. He later went on to become a respected cricket administrator....

, another innovator, received the first patent (1891) for a lunch wagon, or diner
Diner
A diner, also spelled dinor in western Pennsylvania is a prefabricated restaurant building characteristic of North America, especially in the Midwest, in New York City, in Pennsylvania and in New Jersey, and in other areas of the Northeastern United States, although examples can be found throughout...

. He built his "fancy night cafes" and "night lunch wagons" in the Worcester area until 1901. After building a lunch wagon for himself in 1888, Thomas Buckley decided to manufacture lunch wagons in Worcester. Buckley was very successful and became known for his "White House Cafe" wagons. In 1906 Philip Duprey and Irving Stoddard established the Worcester Lunch Car Company
Worcester Lunch Car Company
Worcester Lunch Car Company was a large manufacturer of historic diners based in Worcester, Massachusetts from 1906 to 1957.-History:Philip H. Duprey founded the company in 1906 as the Worcester Lunch Car and Carriage Manufacturing Company. It was named for Worcester, Massachusetts, where the...

, which shipped 'diners' all over the Eastern Seaboard. Worcester's Boulevard Diner
Boulevard Diner
Boulevard Diner is a historic diner at 155 Shrewsbury Street in Worcester, Massachusetts.It was built by Worcester Lunch Car Company and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2000....

, Parkway Diner, and Miss Worcester Diner
Miss Worcester Diner
Miss Worcester Diner or Worcester Lunch Car # 812 is an historic diner at 302 Southbridge Street in Worcester, Massachusetts.It was built in 1948 by Worcester Lunch Car Company and is located across the street from the company's Worcester factory...

 are all examples of Worcester Lunch Car Company units, with the Miss Worcester being located across the street from the former factory. Worcester's largest Department store was Denholm & McKay
Denholm & McKay
Denholm & McKay Co. was a department store located in Worcester, Massachusetts. The store was a dominant retailer in Central Massachusetts. The store was popularly known as Denholm's or the Boston Store. The company was founded by William Alexander Denholm in 1870...

 founded in 1871. The store closed in 1973.

They were joined in early automobile
Automobile
An automobile, autocar, motor car or car is a wheeled motor vehicle used for transporting passengers, which also carries its own engine or motor...

 manufacture by American Wheelock, which built compressed air-powered trucks at Worcester in 1904.

In the 1930s a local merchant, Anthony "Spag" Borgatti, opened Spag's
Spag's
Spag's was, from 1934 to 2004, a discount department store on Route 9 in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. The store was considered an early pioneer of discount retailing and was notable for its longtime resistance to accepting charge cards and offering plastic shopping bags and shopping carts...

, a small hardware business, in nearby Shrewsbury. Credited with the invention of discount marketing, he stored his wares in old trailer trucks in order to avoid paying taxes. He was a local philanthropist. Every spring, Spag offered free tomato seedlings to his customers.

The David Clark Company
David Clark Company
David Clark Company, Inc. is an American manufacturer, best known for noise attenuating headsets with boom microphones for use in military aviation, commercial aviation, industry and professional communication in high-noise environments...

 pioneered aeronautical protective equipment beginning in 1941, ranging from anti-gravity suits to space suits. Innovations include full-pressure suits for X-15 test pilots flying to record speeds and altitudes and the spacesuit worn by all Apollo astronauts on lunar missions. The company produces the suits worn by modern space shuttle astronauts.

Morgan Construction, a manufacturer of steel rolling mills, has its headquarters in Worcester. Wright Line, a manufacturer of consoles and other workstations for 911/emergency operations centers, server enclosures and racks for data centers, office and computer lab furniture, is also headquartered in the city. Saint-Gobain
Saint-Gobain
Saint-Gobain S.A. is a French multinational corporation, founded in 1665 in Paris and headquartered on the outskirts of Paris at La Défense and in Courbevoie. Originally a mirror manufacturer, it now also produces a variety of construction and high-performance materials.The company has its head...

 has a substantial presence in Worcester following its 1990 purchase of Norton Abrasives
Norton Abrasives
Norton Abrasives of Worcester, Massachusetts is the world's largest manufacturer and supplier of abrasives for commercial applications, household, and automotive refinishing usage. In 1990 it was purchased by Saint-Gobain of France...

, a 100+ year old manufacturer of abrasives, ceramics, and specialty materials. Polar Beverages
Polar Beverages
Polar Beverages is a fourth-generation, family-owned business that traces its roots back to 1882 and is based in Worcester, Massachusetts. The company is currently run by Ralph Crowley, Jr., the great-grandson of founder Dennis M. Crowley...

, the largest independent soft-drink bottler in the United States, is also located in the city.

Today, Worcester has a diversified economy. The biotech park adjacent to the University of Massachusetts Medical School
University of Massachusetts Medical School
The University of Massachusetts Medical School is one of five campuses of the University of Massachusetts system and is home to three schools: the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Graduate School of Nursing; a biomedical research enterprise; and a range of...

 is host to many innovative companies, including Advanced Cell Technology
Advanced Cell Technology
Advanced Cell Technology, Incorporated , is a biotechnology company located in Marlborough, Massachusetts, USA. The company specializes in the development and commercialization of cell therapies for the treatment of a variety of diseases...

, which focuses on the development of effective methods to generate replacement cells from stem cells, and Abbott Laboratories
Abbott Laboratories
Abbott Laboratories is an American-based global, diversified pharmaceuticals and health care products company. It has 90,000 employees and operates in over 130 countries. The company headquarters are in Abbott Park, North Chicago, Illinois. The company was founded by Chicago physician, Dr....

, a leading pharmaceutical research and manufacturing firm.
In the financial sector, Hanover Insurance
Hanover Insurance
The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. , based in Worcester, Massachusetts, is one of the oldest continuous businesses in the United States, still operating within its original industry...

 maintains its national headquarters in the city. A subsidiary of Unum (formerly UnumProvident), the Paul Revere Life Insurance Company, is also headquartered in Worcester as is the Harleysville Worcester Insurance Company, the oldest insurance company based in Massachusetts.



The Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology
Worcester Foundation for Experimental Biology
The Worcester Foundation for Biomedical Research was a non-profit biomedical research institute based in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts.-History:...

 located in nearby Shrewsbury
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 31,640 people, 12,366 households, and 8,693 families residing in the town. The population density was . There were 12,696 housing units at an average density of...

 is best known for the development of the oral contraceptive pill (1951) and for pioneering research on in vitro fertilization. The first American conceived by this method (1981), Elizabeth Jordan Carr
Elizabeth Jordan Carr
Elizabeth Jordan Carr was the United States' first baby born from the in-vitro fertilization procedure and the 15th in the world. The technique was conducted at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk under the direction of Doctors Howard Jones and Georgeanna Seegar Jones, who were the first to...

, lived in nearby Westminster.

In the area of small business
Small business
A small business is a business that is privately owned and operated, with a small number of employees and relatively low volume of sales. Small businesses are normally privately owned corporations, partnerships, or sole proprietorships...

 retailing, Worcester is home to the notable popular culture
Popular culture
Popular culture is the totality of ideas, perspectives, attitudes, memes, images and other phenomena that are deemed preferred per an informal consensus within the mainstream of a given culture, especially Western culture of the early to mid 20th century and the emerging global mainstream of the...

 emporium That's Entertainment
That's Entertainment (comic shop)
That's Entertainment is an Eisner Award-winning comics and collectibles store in Worcester, Massachusetts. Michael Warshaw concisely referred to the store in a Worcester Magazine article on 5/5/05 as "the pop culture emporium located in the ancient former auto dealership at 244 Park Ave." The...

 (est. 1980), which in 1997 was one of three comic book
Comic book
A comic book or comicbook is a magazine made up of comics, narrative artwork in the form of separate panels that represent individual scenes, often accompanied by dialog as well as including...

 stores worldwide that received a "Will Eisner Spirit of Comics Retailer Award" from Comic-Con International: San Diego
Comic-Con International
San Diego Comic-Con International, also known as Comic-Con International: San Diego , and commonly known as Comic-Con or the San Diego Comic-Con, was founded as the Golden State Comic Book Convention and later the San Diego Comic Book Convention in 1970 by Shel Dorf and a group of San Diegans...

. The award, named for comic book creator Will Eisner
Will Eisner
William Erwin "Will" Eisner was an American comics writer, artist and entrepreneur. He is considered one of the most important contributors to the development of the medium and is known for the cartooning studio he founded; for his highly influential series The Spirit; for his use of comics as an...

, recognizes "an individual retailer who has done an outstanding job of supporting the comics art medium both in the community and within the industry at large".

The Worcester Common Outlets
Worcester Common Outlets
The Worcester Common Outlets, located off Interstate 290 in Downtown Worcester, Massachusetts, is a vacant two level shopping mall which originally opened on July 29, 1971 as the Worcester Center Galleria...

 originally opened July 29, 1971 as the Worcester Center Galleria. In 1994, Worcester Center Associates sold the Galleria to New England Development which slowly shut down the remaining stores with plans to revitalize the mall. On October 29, 1994, the Galleria reopened as the Worcester Common Fashion Outlets. As business dwindled, Berkeley Investments, along with its capital partner, Starwood Capital of Greenwich, Connecticut announced that they would buy the Worcester Common Outlets on June 22, 2004. Store leases were not renewed and the mall closed for good in April 2006. The mall was vacant and had not been demolished until September 13, 2010, when demolition of portions of the former mall started. On May 18, 2011, visible exterior demolition began.

Polar Beverages
Polar Beverages
Polar Beverages is a fourth-generation, family-owned business that traces its roots back to 1882 and is based in Worcester, Massachusetts. The company is currently run by Ralph Crowley, Jr., the great-grandson of founder Dennis M. Crowley...

, founded in 1882, is headquartered in Worcester. It runs two bottling plants in the city, where it bottles its own line of soft drinks as well as several major national brands.

Top employers

According to the City's 2010 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top ten employers in the city are:
# Employer # of employees
1 UMass Memorial Health Care
UMass Memorial Health Care
UMass Memorial Health Care is a not-for-profit health care network affiliated with the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Massachusetts, that operates 5 hospitals and a number of health clinics in the Central Massachusetts area...

13,764
2 University of Massachusetts Medical School
University of Massachusetts Medical School
The University of Massachusetts Medical School is one of five campuses of the University of Massachusetts system and is home to three schools: the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Graduate School of Nursing; a biomedical research enterprise; and a range of...

5,678
3 City of Worcester 5,128
4 Saint Vincent Hospital
Saint Vincent Hospital
The Saint Vincent Hospital is located in Worcester, Massachusetts. The hospital was founded by the Catholic organization Sisters of Providence in 1893 and was named after the patron saint of the Sisters' order, Saint Vincent de Paul. In 1990, the hospital merged with the Fallon Healthcare System....

2,386
5 Hanover Insurance
Hanover Insurance
The Hanover Insurance Group, Inc. , based in Worcester, Massachusetts, is one of the oldest continuous businesses in the United States, still operating within its original industry...

1,850
6 Saint-Gobain
Saint-Gobain
Saint-Gobain S.A. is a French multinational corporation, founded in 1665 in Paris and headquartered on the outskirts of Paris at La Défense and in Courbevoie. Originally a mirror manufacturer, it now also produces a variety of construction and high-performance materials.The company has its head...

1,807
7 Fallon Clinic 1,801
8 Polar Beverages
Polar Beverages
Polar Beverages is a fourth-generation, family-owned business that traces its roots back to 1882 and is based in Worcester, Massachusetts. The company is currently run by Ralph Crowley, Jr., the great-grandson of founder Dennis M. Crowley...

1,400
9 College of the Holy Cross
College of the Holy Cross
The College of the Holy Cross is an undergraduate Roman Catholic liberal arts college located in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA...

1,107
10 Quinsigamond Community College
Quinsigamond Community College
Quinsigamond Community College is a public, two-year academic institution in Worcester, Massachusetts. A commuter school, the college has an enrollment of over 8,000 students in its Associate's degree and certification programs...

900

Primary and secondary education

Worcester's public schools
Worcester Public Schools
Worcester Public Schools is a school district serving the city of Worcester, Massachusetts, United States.-Leadership:The district is led by a Superintendent, hired by the seven-member Worcester School Committee. Dr...

 educate more than 23,000 students in kindergarten
Kindergarten
A kindergarten is a preschool educational institution for children. The term was created by Friedrich Fröbel for the play and activity institute that he created in 1837 in Bad Blankenburg as a social experience for children for their transition from home to school...

 through 12th grade. The system consists of 33 elementary schools, 4 middle schools, 7 high schools, and 13 other learning centers such as magnet schools, alternative schools, and special education
Special education
Special education is the education of students with special needs in a way that addresses the students' individual differences and needs. Ideally, this process involves the individually planned and systematically monitored arrangement of teaching procedures, adapted equipment and materials,...

 schools. The city's public school system also administers an adult education component called "Night Life", and operates a Public-access television
Public-access television
Public-access television is a form of non-commercial mass media where ordinary people can create content television programming which is cablecast through cable TV specialty channels...

 cable TV station on channel 11.

The Massachusetts Academy of Math and Science
Massachusetts Academy of Math and Science at WPI
Located in Worcester, Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Academy of Math and Science at WPI was founded in 1992 by the Massachusetts State Legislature as a public magnet school to serve academically advanced youth in grades eleven and twelve in math, science, and technology.The school emphasizes...

 was founded in 1992 as a public secondary school located at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Worcester Polytechnic Institute is a private university located in Worcester, Massachusetts, in the United States.Founded in 1865 in Worcester, WPI was one of the United States' first engineering and technology universities...

.

Twenty-one private and parochial schools are also found throughout Worcester, including the city's oldest educational institution, Worcester Academy
Worcester Academy
Worcester Academy is an independent coeducational preparatory school spread over in Worcester, Massachusetts in the United States. The school is divided into a middle school, serving approximately 150 students in grades six to eight, and an upper school, serving approximately 500 students in...

, founded in 1834, and Bancroft School
Bancroft School
Located on a campus in Worcester, Massachusetts, Bancroft School is an independent, coeducational, K-12, college-preparatory day school serving the communities of Central Massachusetts and MetroWest Boston....

, founded in 1900.

The most known public schools include North High School, South High School, Doherty High School, and Burncoat High School.

Higher education

Worcester is home to several institutes of higher education.
  • The oldest, founded in 1843, is the Jesuit College of the Holy Cross
    College of the Holy Cross
    The College of the Holy Cross is an undergraduate Roman Catholic liberal arts college located in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA...

    , the oldest Roman Catholic college in New England and one of the oldest in the United States. Well-known graduates include Dr. Joseph E. Murray, Nobel laureate in Physiology or Medicine, Billy Collins
    Billy Collins
    Billy Collins is an American poet, appointed as Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003. He is a Distinguished Professor at Lehman College of the City University of New York and is the Senior Distinguished Fellow of the Winter Park Institute, Florida...

    , former Poet Laureate of the United States, Bob Cousy
    Bob Cousy
    Robert Joseph "Bob" Cousy is a retired American professional basketball player. The 6'1" , 175-pound Cousy played point guard with the National Basketball Association's Boston Celtics from 1951 to 1963 and briefly with the Cincinnati Royals in the 1969–70 season...

    , and Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas
    Clarence Thomas
    Clarence Thomas is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Succeeding Thurgood Marshall, Thomas is the second African American to serve on the Court....

    . In 2007, the College of the Holy Cross
    College of the Holy Cross
    The College of the Holy Cross is an undergraduate Roman Catholic liberal arts college located in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA...

     was ranked by U.S. News and World Report as the nation's 32nd highest rated liberal arts college
    Liberal arts college
    A liberal arts college is one with a primary emphasis on undergraduate study in the liberal arts and sciences.Students in the liberal arts generally major in a particular discipline while receiving exposure to a wide range of academic subjects, including sciences as well as the traditional...

    .

  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute
    Worcester Polytechnic Institute
    Worcester Polytechnic Institute is a private university located in Worcester, Massachusetts, in the United States.Founded in 1865 in Worcester, WPI was one of the United States' first engineering and technology universities...

     (1865) is an innovative leader in engineering education and partnering with local biotechnology industries. Robert Goddard, the father of modern rocketry, graduated from WPI in 1908 with a Bachelor of Science in physics
    Physics
    Physics is a natural science that involves the study of matter and its motion through spacetime, along with related concepts such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves.Physics is one of the oldest academic...

    .

  • Worcester State University is a highly-ranked public, 4-year college founded in 1874 as Worcester Normal School.

  • Clark University
    Clark University
    Clark University is a private research university and liberal arts college in Worcester, Massachusetts.Founded in 1887, it is the oldest educational institution founded as an all-graduate university. Clark now also educates undergraduates...

    , founded in 1887, is the first graduate school in the country. It is noted for strengths in psychology and geography. Well-known professors include Albert A. Michelson, who won the first American Nobel Prize in 1902 for his measurement of light, Robert Goddard, the father of the space age, and G. Stanley Hall
    G. Stanley Hall
    Granville Stanley Hall was a pioneering American psychologist and educator. His interests focused on childhood development and evolutionary theory...

    , the founder of organized psychology as a science and profession, the father of the child study movement, and the founder of the American Psychological Association
    American Psychological Association
    The American Psychological Association is the largest scientific and professional organization of psychologists in the United States. It is the world's largest association of psychologists with around 154,000 members including scientists, educators, clinicians, consultants and students. The APA...

    . Clark offers the only program in the country leading to a Ph.D. in Holocaust History and Genocide Studies. During Sigmund Freud
    Sigmund Freud
    Sigmund Freud , born Sigismund Schlomo Freud , was an Austrian neurologist who founded the discipline of psychoanalysis...

    's single trip to the United States, Sigmund Freud spoke only at Clark University.

  • The University of Massachusetts Medical School
    University of Massachusetts Medical School
    The University of Massachusetts Medical School is one of five campuses of the University of Massachusetts system and is home to three schools: the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Graduate School of Nursing; a biomedical research enterprise; and a range of...

     (1970) is one of the nation's top 50 medical schools. Dr. Craig Mello won the 2006 Nobel Prize for Medicine. The University of Massachusetts Medical School is ranked fourth in primary care education among America's 125 medical schools in the 2006 U.S. News & World Report
    U.S. News & World Report
    U.S. News & World Report is an American news magazine published from Washington, D.C. Along with Time and Newsweek it was for many years a leading news weekly, focusing more than its counterparts on political, economic, health and education stories...

    annual guide "America’s Best Graduate Schools."

  • Becker College
    Becker College
    Becker College is a college in Massachusetts, United States with campuses in Worcester and Leicester. Established in 1887, Becker College is home to two distinct campuses located in Worcester and Leicester, Massachusetts...

     is a private college with campuses in Worcester and Leicester, Massachusetts
    Leicester, Massachusetts
    Leicester is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 10,970 at the 2010 census.-History:Leicester was first settled in 1713 and was officially incorporated in 1714....

    . It was founded in Leicester, Massachusetts, in 1784 as Leicester Academy. The Worcester campus was founded in 1887, and the two campuses merged into Becker College in 1977.

  • The Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
    Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
    The Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is an accredited, private institution located in the Longwood Medical and Academic Area of Boston, Massachusetts...

    —Worcester Campus houses the institution's accelerated programs in Nursing and Doctor of Pharmacy as well as the Master's program in Physician Assistant Studies for post-baccalaureate students.

  • Assumption College
    Assumption College
    Assumption College is a private, Roman Catholic, liberal arts college located on 185 acres in Worcester, Massachusetts. Assumption has an enrollment of about 2,117 undergraduates...

    , the fourth oldest Roman Catholic college in New England, was founded in 1904. At 175 acre (0.7082005 km²), it has the largest campus in Worcester.

  • Quinsigamond Community College
    Quinsigamond Community College
    Quinsigamond Community College is a public, two-year academic institution in Worcester, Massachusetts. A commuter school, the college has an enrollment of over 8,000 students in its Associate's degree and certification programs...

    .


An early higher education institution, the Oread Institute
Oread Institute
The Oread Institute was a women's college founded in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1849 by Eli Thayer. Before its closing in 1934, it was one of the oldest institutions of higher education for women in the United States...

, closed in 1934.

Many of these institutions participate in the Colleges of Worcester Consortium
Colleges of Worcester Consortium
The Colleges of Worcester Consortium is a non-profit association of 12 colleges and universities located in central Massachusetts. The Consortium claims "works cooperatively both to further the missions of the member institutions individually and to advance higher education regionally." It...

. This independent, non-profit collegiate association includes academic institutions in Worcester and other communities in Worcester County, such as Anna Maria College
Anna Maria College
Anna Maria College is a coeducational Catholic liberal arts college in Paxton, Massachusetts.-History:Anna Maria College is a private, coeducational Catholic College founded in 1946 by the Sisters of Saint Anne. The school's original campus was in Marlboro, MA...

 in neighboring Paxton
Paxton, Massachusetts
Paxton is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 4,806 at the 2010 census.-History:Paxton was first settled in 1749 and was officially incorporated in 1765....

. It operates and facilitates cooperation among the colleges and universities. One example is its inter-college shuttle bus and student cross registration.

Other programs

Worcester is the home of Dynamy
Dynamy
Dynamy, Inc. is the oldest student residential internship program in the United States. It was founded in 1969 as an experiential educational organization based in Worcester, Massachusetts.-Programs:...

, the oldest student residential internship program in the United States. The organization was founded in 1969 and provides internships to young adults during a Gap year
Gap year
An expression or phrase that is associated with taking time out to travel in between life stages. It is also known as sabbatical, time off and time out that refers to a period of time in which students disengage from curricular education and undertake non curricular activities, such as travel or...

, helping them mature, become self-sufficient, and choose a vocation.

Culture

Museums and cultural centers

Worcester is home to several noteworthy libraries and museums, including:
  • the American Antiquarian Society
    American Antiquarian Society
    The American Antiquarian Society , located in Worcester, Massachusetts, is both a learned society and national research library of pre-twentieth century American History and culture. Its main building, known also as Antiquarian Hall, is a U.S. National Historic Landmark...

    , a national library;
  • the Worcester Art Museum
    Worcester Art Museum
    The Worcester Art Museum, also known by its acronym WAM, houses over 35,000 works of art dating from antiquity to the present day, representing cultures from all over the world. The WAM opened in 1898 in Worcester, Massachusetts, and is the second largest art museum in New England...

    , whose highlights include works by El Greco
    El Greco
    El Greco was a painter, sculptor and architect of the Spanish Renaissance. "El Greco" was a nickname, a reference to his ethnic Greek origin, and the artist normally signed his paintings with his full birth name in Greek letters, Δομήνικος Θεοτοκόπουλος .El Greco was born on Crete, which was at...

    , Rembrandt, Matisse, Renoir
    Renoir
    -People with the surname Renoir :* Pierre-Auguste Renoir , French painter* Pierre Renoir , French actor and son of Pierre-Auguste Renoir* Jean Renoir , French film director and son of Pierre-Auguste Renoir...

    , Gauguin, Kandinsky, Winslow Homer
    Winslow Homer
    Winslow Homer was an American landscape painter and printmaker, best known for his marine subjects. He is considered one of the foremost painters in 19th century America and a preeminent figure in American art....

    , John Singer Sargent
    John Singer Sargent
    John Singer Sargent was an American artist, considered the "leading portrait painter of his generation" for his evocations of Edwardian era luxury. During his career, he created roughly 900 oil paintings and more than 2,000 watercolors, as well as countless sketches and charcoal drawings...

    , Franz Kline
    Franz Kline
    Franz Jozef Kline was an American painter mainly associated with the Abstract Expressionist movement centered around New York in the 1940s and 1950s. He was born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and attended Girard College, an academy in Philadelphia for fatherless boys...

    , and Jackson Pollock
    Jackson Pollock
    Paul Jackson Pollock , known as Jackson Pollock, was an influential American painter and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement. During his lifetime, Pollock enjoyed considerable fame and notoriety. He was regarded as a mostly reclusive artist. He had a volatile personality, and...

    ;
  • the Higgins Armory Museum
    Higgins Armory Museum
    Higgins Armory Museum, located in Worcester, Massachusetts, housed in a steel Art Deco Building, is one of the few museums in the Western Hemisphere devoted to arms and armour. The museum is a public, non-profit museum specializing in the history of arms and armor...

    , housed in a steel
    Steel
    Steel is an alloy that consists mostly of iron and has a carbon content between 0.2% and 2.1% by weight, depending on the grade. Carbon is the most common alloying material for iron, but various other alloying elements are used, such as manganese, chromium, vanadium, and tungsten...

     Art Deco
    Art Deco
    Art deco , or deco, is an eclectic artistic and design style that began in Paris in the 1920s and flourished internationally throughout the 1930s, into the World War II era. The style influenced all areas of design, including architecture and interior design, industrial design, fashion and...

     Building, the sole museum in the Western Hemisphere devoted to arms and armour;
  • the EcoTarium
    EcoTarium
    The EcoTarium is a science and nature museum located in Worcester, Massachusetts. Previously known as the New England Science Center, the museum features several permanent and traveling exhibits, the Alden Planetarium, a narrow-gauge train pulled by a scale model of an 1860s steam engine, a tree...

    , a science museum
    Science museum
    A science museum or a science centre is a museum devoted primarily to science. Older science museums tended to concentrate on static displays of objects related to natural history, paleontology, geology, industry and industrial machinery, etc. Modern trends in museology have broadened the range of...

    .


Performing arts centers and arenas are abundant in the city. They include:
  • Mechanics Hall, a Renaissance Revival concert hall on the National Register of Historic Places
    National Register of Historic Places
    The National Register of Historic Places is the United States government's official list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects deemed worthy of preservation...

    ;
  • Tuckerman Hall, designed by Josephine Wright Chapman
    Josephine Wright Chapman
    Josephine Wright Chapman was an architect in Boston, Massachusetts, and New York. She trained with Clarence Blackall, and was later affiliated with Grundmann Studios. She belonged to the "Society of Architects." Around 1909 she "reign[ed] supreme as the only woman architect in the Hub."-Designs:*...

    , one of this country's earliest woman architects, and home of the Massachusetts Symphony Orchestra;
  • DCU Center
    DCU Center
    The DCU Center is an indoor arena and convention center complex, located in downtown Worcester, Massachusetts....

    , Arena and Convention Center, home of the Worcester Sharks
    Worcester Sharks
    The Worcester Sharks are a professional ice hockey team in the American Hockey League . The franchise is located in Worcester, Massachusetts and play their home games at the DCU Center in Downtown Worcester. The Sharks and the city of Worcester hosted the 2009 AHL All-Star Classic.-History:On...

     and host of concerts, family events, sporting events, conventions, trade shows, banquets, and special events, opened in 1982 and was joined by the attached Convention Center in 1997;

  • the Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts
    Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts
    The Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts in Worcester, Massachusetts, United States was originally built in 1904 as the Franklin Square Theatre regularly scheduling burlesque shows, Broadway touring shows and headline acts transitioning to showing silent films by 1912 when vaudeville magnate...

    , Worcester's venue for Broadway shows, concerts, and nationally recognized performers, located at the site of the old Poli Palace Theatre on Main Street;
  • the Worcester Palladium
    Worcester Palladium
    The Worcester Palladium is an all-ages concert hall and performance venue in Worcester, Massachusetts.Some artists that have performed there are Blink-182, Fall Out Boy, Four Year Strong, My Chemical Romance, Jimmy Eat World, Kanye West, and Bob Dylan....

    , on Main Street, a venue attracting many musicians and performers from around the world;
  • the Worcester Memorial Auditorium
    Worcester Memorial Auditorium
    The Worcester Memorial Auditorium, also known simply as the Worcester Auditorium, is a multi-purpose arena and auditorium in Worcester, Massachusetts. Built in 1933, as a World War I War memorial in the form of a multi-purpose hall, the Auditorium has a , and is located in Lincoln Square...

    , a 1930's neoclassical
    Neoclassical architecture
    Neoclassical architecture was an architectural style produced by the neoclassical movement that began in the mid-18th century, manifested both in its details as a reaction against the Rococo style of naturalistic ornament, and in its architectural formulas as an outgrowth of some classicizing...

    -style arena and auditorium. It sees few events at present, however.


The Worcester County Poetry Association fosters the poetic tradition by sponsoring readings by national and local poets, celebrating Bloomsday, and holding conferences and literary tours of Worcester. Local poets have competed successfully in the National Poetry Slam
National Poetry Slam
The National Poetry Slam is a performance poetry competition where teams from across the United States, Canada, and France participate in a large-scale poetry slam. The event occurs in early August every year and takes place in a different US city....

.

The Worcester Center for Crafts
Worcester Center for Crafts
The Worcester Center for Crafts, located in Worcester, MA, is one of Worcester’s oldest cultural institutions and was one of the first organizations of its kind in the United States. Founded in 1856 by the Worcester Employment Society, the Center provided women with the skills needed to make and...

, founded in 1856 as the Worcester Employment Society, provides professional-level craft studies to the Worcester community. The Craft Center's original purpose was to foster economic empowerment by teaching immigrants the skills needed to create and sell crafts. Today, the Worcester Center for Crafts offers craft education in weaving, metalwork, woodwork, enameling, jewelry-making, and other crafts, and seeks to promote an appreciation for fine craft.

Annual events

  • The Worcester Music Festival is the oldest music festival in the United States. This festival is presented by Music Worcester, Inc., which also presents the Mass Jazz Festival.
  • stART on the Street is a large street art festival celebrating local art and culture which takes place on the 3rd Sunday in September in the Main South neighborhood". This is hosted by the Central MA Arts Assembly.
  • The Asian Festival of Worcester is a large annual festival which takes place on the last Sunday in June each year from 12:00pm to 6:00pm. This event is hosted by the South East Asian Coalition of Central Massachusetts and is a collaboration of performances, food, and cultural tables from the diverse Asian communities located all over Massachusetts.
  • The New England Metal and Hardcore Festival
    New England Metal and Hardcore Festival
    The New England Metal and Hardcore Festival is an annual festival held in Worcester, Massachusetts. It is a weekend-long concert of heavy metal and hardcore bands along with a merchandising and promotional area for record labels and other vendors...

     is usually held in mid to late April at the Palladium. It has run annually since 1999.
  • Rock and Shock, a horror convention and heavy metal concert, is held at the Palladium and DCU Center
    DCU Center
    The DCU Center is an indoor arena and convention center complex, located in downtown Worcester, Massachusetts....

     Convention Center each October.
  • Canal Fest occurs every fall in the City's Canal District.
  • Worcester First Night is the name of the city's New Years Eve celebration.
  • Worcester County St. Patrick's Parade - one of Massachusetts largest parades. Worcester is also the home of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Div. 36, located on Temple Street, right by the Blackstone Canal.
  • The New England Summer Nationals
    New England Summer Nationals
    The New England Summer Nationals is a popular, annual, four-day-long automotive festival in Worcester, Massachusetts. It usually occurs on the July 4th holiday weekend. In 1980, the first such festival attracted 2,000 visitors; since then, attendees have peaked at 200,000, drawn from both New...

     is a large motorcycle and muscle car event held in Worcester.

Popular music

In 1963, a WPI-based folk trio called the Wanderers recorded one album for Strand Records. This was done under the name Minute Men to avoid confusion with another existing recording group. The trio also recorded one single for Swan Records
Swan Records
Swan Records was a mid-20th century United States based record label, founded in 1957, based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It had a subsidiary label called Lawn Records....

 under the name College Boys.

Also in 1963, WPI-based rock band the Blue Echoes recorded a local hit single on their own Bristol label. This was picked up and released nationally by the Lawn subsidiary of Swan Records
Swan Records
Swan Records was a mid-20th century United States based record label, founded in 1957, based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It had a subsidiary label called Lawn Records....

. The group later recorded two more singles on the local BEP label, one of which was a regional hit.

In September 1981, the Rolling Stones played an unscheduled performance at the nightclub Sir Morgan's Cove (later renamed The Lucky Dog) before embarking on their national tour that year. Billed as "Blue Monday with The Cockroaches", the Stones played before a packed house of 350 people who had been given tickets in a promotion by WAAF
WAAF (FM)
WAAF is a Boston, Massachusetts, area commercial Album Oriented Rock/Active rock radio station that mixes music that is popular in the modern rock, heavy metal and classic rock genres....

 Radio that day.

One of Rammstein
Rammstein
Rammstein is a German Neue Deutsche Härte band from Berlin, formed in 1994. The band consists of members Till Lindemann , Richard Z. Kruspe , Paul H. Landers , Oliver "Ollie" Riedel , Christoph "Doom" Schneider and Christian "Flake" Lorenz...

's performances in the Family Values Tour
Family Values Tour
The Family Values Tour was created by the band Korn in 1998 to be an annual rock & rap tour.The tour began in 1998 and would take the year off in 2000, due to heavy competition from other tours, such as the Anger Management Tour and the Summer Sanitarium Tour. After a four year hiatus, the Family...

 ended with lead singer Till Lindemann
Till Lindemann
Till Lindemann is a German musician, actor and poet who is the frontman for the German Neue Deutsche Härte band Rammstein.-Biography:...

 and keyboardist Christian "Flake" Lorenz
Christian Lorenz
Christian "Flake" Lorenz is a German musician, notable as the keyboardist for the Neue Deutsche Härte band Rammstein. He is also known for his role in the band Feeling B.-Early years:...

 being arrested due to the controversial performance of "Bück dich
Bück dich
"Bück dich" is a song by the Neue Deutsche Härte band Rammstein that first appeared on their second full-length album, Sehnsucht. The lyrics refer to sodomy.-Live performance and controversy:...

" during a concert on June 5, 1999, in Worcester. They were each fined $200 and spent the night in jail.

Wormtown, a nickname for Worcester, was coined by WCUW
WCUW
WCUW is a community radio station licensed to Worcester, Massachusetts, USA. The station, which broadcasts at 91.3 FM, is owned by WCUW, Inc., a nonprofit organization. WCUW is managed by a professional staff, while all of its programs are hosted by community volunteers.- Station history :WCUW...

 DJ Lenny Saarinen, about 1978. Saarinen joked that Wormtown would be a fitting name for Worcester as it was a dead town. Later he took on the moniker of LB Worm, the Mayor of Wormtown. At first, the term referred to the local underground
Underground music
Underground music comprises a range of different musical genres that operate outside of mainstream culture. Such music can typically share common values, such as the valuing of sincerity and intimacy; an emphasis on freedom of creative expression; an appreciation of artistic creativity...

 punk musical subculture
Subculture
In sociology, anthropology and cultural studies, a subculture is a group of people with a culture which differentiates them from the larger culture to which they belong.- Definition :...

. Later it became used by a few to refer to the city itself.

Sports

Main Article: Sports in Worcester
Sports in Worcester
Worcester, Massachusetts is home to numerous minor league sports teams including the Worcester Tornadoes , Worcester Sharks , and New England Surge . The city is also fielding NCAA Division 1 college and university sports, most notably The College of the Holy Cross...



Worcester has a long-storied past with sports teams and sporting events. The city was home to Marshall Walter ("Major") Taylor
Marshall Taylor
Marshall Walter "Major" Taylor was an American cyclist who won the world track cycling championship in 1899 after setting numerous world records and overcoming racial discrimination...

, an African American
African American
African Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have at least partial ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa and are the direct descendants of enslaved Africans within the boundaries of the present United States...

 cyclist who won the world one-mile (1.6 km) track cycling championship in 1899. Taylor’s legacy is being the second black world champion in any sport. Taylor was nicknamed the Worcester Whirlwind by the local papers.

Lake Quinsigamond
Lake Quinsigamond
Lake Quinsigamond is a body of water situated between the city of Worcester and the town of Shrewsbury in Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA. It is 4 miles long, between 50 and 85 feet deep, and has a surface area of approximately 772 acres . Lake Quinsigamond hosts 8 islands with the...

 is home to the Eastern Sprints
Eastern Sprints
Eastern Sprints refers to the annual rowing championship for the Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges . Since 1974, the "Women's Eastern Sprints" has been held as the annual championship for the Eastern Association of Women's Rowing Colleges league.*For the women's regatta, see Women's Eastern...

, a premier rowing
Rowing (sport)
Rowing is a sport in which athletes race against each other on rivers, on lakes or on the ocean, depending upon the type of race and the discipline. The boats are propelled by the reaction forces on the oar blades as they are pushed against the water...

 event in the United States. Competitive rowing
Rowing (sport)
Rowing is a sport in which athletes race against each other on rivers, on lakes or on the ocean, depending upon the type of race and the discipline. The boats are propelled by the reaction forces on the oar blades as they are pushed against the water...

 teams first came to Lake Quinsigamond in 1857. Finding the long, narrow lake ideal for such crew meets, avid rowers established boating clubs on the lake's shores, the first being the Quinsigamond Boating Club. More boating clubs and races followed, and soon many colleges (local, national, and international) held regattas, such as the Eastern Sprints
Eastern Sprints
Eastern Sprints refers to the annual rowing championship for the Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges . Since 1974, the "Women's Eastern Sprints" has been held as the annual championship for the Eastern Association of Women's Rowing Colleges league.*For the women's regatta, see Women's Eastern...

, on the lake. Beginning in 1895, local high schools held crew races on the lake. In 1952, the lake played host to the National Olympic rowing trials.

In 2002, the Jesse Burkett Little League all-stars team went all the way to the Little League World Series
Little League World Series
The Little League Baseball World Series is a baseball tournament for children aged 11 to 13 years old. It was originally called the National Little League Tournament and was later renamed for the World Series in Major League Baseball. It was first held in 1947 and is held every August in South...

. They made it to the US final before losing to Owensboro, Kentucky
Owensboro, Kentucky
Owensboro is the fourth largest city by population in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It is the county seat of Daviess County. It is located on U.S. Route 60 about southeast of Evansville, Indiana, and is the principal city of the Owensboro, Kentucky, Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city's...

. Jesse Burkett covers the West Side area of Worcester.

The city is home to the American Hockey League team Worcester Sharks
Worcester Sharks
The Worcester Sharks are a professional ice hockey team in the American Hockey League . The franchise is located in Worcester, Massachusetts and play their home games at the DCU Center in Downtown Worcester. The Sharks and the city of Worcester hosted the 2009 AHL All-Star Classic.-History:On...

, which plays at the DCU Center
DCU Center
The DCU Center is an indoor arena and convention center complex, located in downtown Worcester, Massachusetts....

 as a developmental team for the National Hockey League
National Hockey League
The National Hockey League is an unincorporated not-for-profit association which operates a major professional ice hockey league of 30 franchised member clubs, of which 7 are currently located in Canada and 23 in the United States...

's San Jose Sharks
San Jose Sharks
The San Jose Sharks are a professional ice hockey team based in San Jose, California, United States. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League...

. The AHL was formerly represented by the Worcester IceCats
Worcester IceCats
The Worcester IceCats were an ice hockey team in the American Hockey League. They played in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA at the Worcester Centrum...

 from 1994 to 2005. The IceCats were chiefly affiliated with the St. Louis Blues
St. Louis Blues
The St. Louis Blues are a professional ice hockey team based in St. Louis, Missouri. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League . The team is named after the famous W. C. Handy song "St. Louis Blues", and plays in the 19,150-seat Scottrade...

.

The city’s professional baseball
Baseball
Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each. The aim is to score runs by hitting a thrown ball with a bat and touching a series of four bases arranged at the corners of a ninety-foot diamond...

 team, the Worcester Tornadoes
Worcester Tornadoes
The Worcester Tornadoes are a professional baseball team based in Worcester, Massachusetts, in the United States. The Tornadoes are a member of the Canadian-American Association of Professional Baseball, an independent baseball league which is not affiliated with Major League Baseball...

, started in 2005 and is a member of the Canadian-American Association of Professional Baseball
Canadian-American Association of Professional Baseball
The Canadian American Association of Professional Baseball, based in Durham, North Carolina, is a professional, independent baseball league located in the Northeastern United States and the Canadian province of Quebec. It operates in cities not served by Major or Minor League Baseball teams and is...

 League. The team plays at the Hanover Insurance Park at Fitton Field
Fitton Field
Fitton Field is a multi-purpose sports stadium in Worcester, Massachusetts. Primarily used for College of the Holy Cross sporting events, the baseball stadium also serves as the home field for the Can-Am League Worcester Tornadoes.-History and layout:...

 on the campus of the College of the Holy Cross
College of the Holy Cross
The College of the Holy Cross is an undergraduate Roman Catholic liberal arts college located in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA...

 and is not affiliated with any major league team. The New England Surge
New England Surge
The New England Surge were an indoor football team that was a member of the Continental Indoor Football League in 2007 and 2008.The Surge played home games at the DCU Center in downtown Worcester, Massachusetts....

, a member of the Continental Indoor Football League, played their home games in the DCU Center in their two years of existence, 2007 and 2008. Candlepin bowling
Candlepin bowling
Candlepin bowling is a variation of Bowling that is played primarily in the Canadian Maritime provinces, Ontario, Quebec, and the New England states of Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire, where it is more common than ten-pin bowling....

 was invented in Worcester in 1880 by Justin White, an area bowling alley owner.

Golf
Golf
Golf is a precision club and ball sport, in which competing players use many types of clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a golf course using the fewest number of strokes....

's Ryder Cup
Ryder Cup
The Ryder Cup is a biennial golf competition between teams from Europe and the United States. The competition is jointly administered by the PGA of America and the PGA European Tour, and is contested every two years, the venue alternating between courses in the United States and Europe...

's first official tournament was played at the Worcester Country Club in 1927. The course also hosted the U.S. Open
U.S. Open (golf)
The United States Open Championship, commonly known as the U.S. Open, is the annual open golf tournament of the United States. It is the second of the four major championships in golf, and is on the official schedule of both the PGA Tour and the European Tour...

 in 1925
1925 U.S. Open Golf Championship
The 1925 U.S. Open was a golf competition held at Worcester Country Club. The Championship was won by Willie Macfarlane in a second 18 hole playoff over Bobby Jones. Macfarlane shot a U.S. Open record 67 in the second round, but nearly blew his chance at victory with a 78 in the final round...

, and the U.S. Women's Open in 1960.

Worcester’s colleges have long histories and many notable achievements in collegiate sports. The College of the Holy Cross
College of the Holy Cross
The College of the Holy Cross is an undergraduate Roman Catholic liberal arts college located in Worcester, Massachusetts, USA...

 represents NCAA Division 1 sports in Worcester. The other colleges and Universities in Worcester correspond with division II and III. The Holy Cross Crusaders
Holy Cross Crusaders
The Holy Cross Crusaders are the athletic teams representing the College of the Holy Cross. They compete in NCAA Division I as members of the Patriot League. The men's and women's ice hockey teams compete in Atlantic Hockey Association and women's golf in the Big South Conference...

 won the NCAA men's basketball champions in 1947
1947 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament
-External links:* on Shrp Sports * , source for much of the information on this page....

 and NIT men's basketball champions in 1954
1954 National Invitation Tournament
The 1954 National Invitation Tournament was the 1954 edition of the annual NCAA college basketball competition.-Selected teams:Below is a list of the 12 teams selected for the tournament.-Brackets/Results:Below is the tournament bracket....

, led by future NBA hall-of-famers and Boston Celtic legends Bob Cousy
Bob Cousy
Robert Joseph "Bob" Cousy is a retired American professional basketball player. The 6'1" , 175-pound Cousy played point guard with the National Basketball Association's Boston Celtics from 1951 to 1963 and briefly with the Cincinnati Royals in the 1969–70 season...

 and Tom Heinsohn. The Crusaders men’s

Religion

The Unitarian-Universalist Church of Worcester was founded in 1841.

Worcester is home to a dedicated Jewish population, who attend six synagogue
Synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

s, including Temple Emanuel
Temple Emanuel (Worcester, Massachusetts)
Temple Emanuel is a leading Reform Jewish synagogue located in Worcester, Massachusetts, affiliated with the Union for Reform Judaism. Founded in 1921, it is the oldest and largest Reform congregation in Worcester. The current building was constructed in 1949 and greatly expanded in 1961 when...

, a leading Reform
Reform Judaism (North America)
Reform Judaism is the largest denomination of American Jews today. With an estimated 1.5 million members, it also accounts for the largest number of Jews affiliated with Progressive Judaism worldwide.- Reform Jewish theology :Rabbi W...

 congregation, and Congregation Beth Israel
Congregation Beth Israel (Worcester, Massachusetts)
Congregation Beth Israel is an egalitarian Conservative congregation located at 15 Jamesbury Drive in Worcester, Massachusetts. Founded in 1924 as an Orthodox synagogue, it formally affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism in 1949, and describes itself as the "leading...

, a Conservative
Conservative Judaism
Conservative Judaism is a modern stream of Judaism that arose out of intellectual currents in Germany in the mid-19th century and took institutional form in the United States in the early 1900s.Conservative Judaism has its roots in the school of thought known as Positive-Historical Judaism,...

 synagogue
Synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

 founded in 1924. The synagogue and its rabbi
Rabbi
In Judaism, a rabbi is a teacher of Torah. This title derives from the Hebrew word רבי , meaning "My Master" , which is the way a student would address a master of Torah...

 were the subject of the book And They Shall be My People: An American Rabbi and His Congregation by Paul Wilkes
Paul Wilkes
Paul Wilkes is an American writer of Slovak origin and filmmaker who is best known for his focus on religion, especially Roman Catholicism and its monastic tradition....

.

Media

The Worcester Telegram & Gazette
Worcester Telegram & Gazette
The Telegram & Gazette is Worcester, Massachusetts's only daily newspaper. The paper, known locally as the Telegram or the T & G is owned by the Worcester Telegram & Gazette Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of The New York Times Company .It offers coverage of all of...

 is Worcester's only daily newspaper. The paper, known locally as "the Telegram" or "the T and G," is wholly owned by The New York Times Company
The New York Times Company
The New York Times Company is an American media company best known as the publisher of its namesake, The New York Times. Arthur Ochs Sulzberger, Jr. has served as Chairman of the Board since 1997. It is headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York City....

. WCTR, channel 3, is Worcester's local news television station, and WUNI-TV, channel 27, is the only major over-the-air broadcast television station in Worcester. Radio stations based in Worcester include WCHC
WCHC
WCHC is the student-run radio station of College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA, its city of license and broadcasts at a frequency of 88.1 MHz.WCHC's official slogan is: "Worcester's Only Alternative Source"...

, WCUW
WCUW
WCUW is a community radio station licensed to Worcester, Massachusetts, USA. The station, which broadcasts at 91.3 FM, is owned by WCUW, Inc., a nonprofit organization. WCUW is managed by a professional staff, while all of its programs are hosted by community volunteers.- Station history :WCUW...

, WSRS
WSRS
WSRS is an American commercial radio station broadcasting on 96.1 FM. The station is licensed to Worcester, Massachusetts, and is owned by Clear Channel Communications. WSRS offers an adult contemporary music format focusing on the hits of the 1980s and 1990s. The station also mixes in occasional...

, WTAG
WTAG
WTAG is an AM radio station broadcasting on 580 kHz in Paxton, Massachusetts. WTAG programming is also simulcast on FM translator W235AV at 94.9 MHz, licensed to Tatnuck, Massachusetts...

, WWFX
WWFX
WWFX is a radio station branded as "100 FM The Pike" serving the Worcester vicinity with classic hits songs from the 1960s to the 1980s. It broadcasts on 100.1 MHz/Channel 261 and is under ownership of Cumulus Media....

, WICN
WICN
WICN , is a National Public Radio member station in Worcester, Massachusetts.-External links:*...

 and WXLO
WXLO
WXLO is a Hot Adult Contemporary radio station that serves the Worcester, Massachusetts market, broadcasting on the FM band at a frequency of 104.5 MHz. The station is licensed in Fitchburg, Massachusetts to Cumulus Media...

. WCCA-TV
WCCA-TV
WCCA-TV is the Public-access television cable TV station in Worcester, Massachusetts.- External links :**...

 Channel 13 provides Community Cable-Access Television as well as a live stream of the channel on their website.

Transportation

Worcester is served by several interstate highways. Interstate 290
Interstate 290 (Massachusetts)
Interstate 290 runs for from Auburn, Massachusetts to Marlborough, Massachusetts. It is a continuation of I-395 north of I-90 and runs through downtown Worcester, Massachusetts, I-190 splits off, and I-290 runs across Lake Quinsigamond and east to I-495 in Marlborough...

 connects central Worcester to Interstate 495
Interstate 495 (Massachusetts)
Interstate 495 is the designation of an Interstate Highway half-beltway in Massachusetts. It was the longest auxiliary Interstate Highway of its kind—measuring 120.74 miles —until 1996, when the PA Route 9 section of the Pennsylvania Turnpike was redesignated as Interstate 476, making it about ...

, I-90
Interstate 90
Interstate 90 is the longest Interstate Highway in the United States at . It is the northernmost coast-to-coast interstate, and parallels US 20 for the most part. Its western terminus is in Seattle, at Edgar Martinez Drive S. near Safeco Field and CenturyLink Field, and its eastern terminus is in...

 in nearby Auburn, and I-395. I-190
Interstate 190 (Massachusetts)
Interstate 190 runs for north from I-290 in Worcester, Massachusetts to Route 2 in Leominster, Massachusetts. A portion of the highway was built with extra-wide shoulders, which are painted green, to prevent runoff from contaminating the nearby Wachusett Reservoir...

 links Worcester to MA 2 and the cities of Fitchburg
Fitchburg, Massachusetts
Fitchburg is the third largest city in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 40,318 at the 2010 census. Fitchburg is home to Fitchburg State University as well as 17 public and private elementary and high schools.- History :...

 and Leominster
Leominster, Massachusetts
Leominster is a city in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. It is the second-largest city in Worcester County, with a population of 40,759 at the 2010 census. Leominster is located north of Worcester and west of Boston. Both Route 2 and Route 12 pass through Leominster. Interstate 190,...

 in northern Worcester County. I-90 can also be reached from a new Massachusetts Route 146 connector.

Worcester is also served by several smaller Massachusetts state highways. Route 9 links the city to its eastern and western suburbs, Shrewsbury
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts
-Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 31,640 people, 12,366 households, and 8,693 families residing in the town. The population density was . There were 12,696 housing units at an average density of...

 and Leicester
Leicester, Massachusetts
Leicester is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 10,970 at the 2010 census.-History:Leicester was first settled in 1713 and was officially incorporated in 1714....

. Route 9 runs almost the entire length of the state, connecting Boston and Worcester with Pittsfield
Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Pittsfield is the largest city and the county seat of Berkshire County, Massachusetts, United States. It is the principal city of the Pittsfield, Massachusetts Metropolitan Statistical Area which encompasses all of Berkshire County. Its area code is 413. Its ZIP code is 01201...

, near the New York
New York
New York is a state in the Northeastern region of the United States. It is the nation's third most populous state. New York is bordered by New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south, and by Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont to the east...

 state border. Route 12 was the primary route north to Leominster and Fitchburg until the completion of I-190. Route 12 also connected Worcester to Webster
Webster, Massachusetts
-Media:* Worcester Telegram & Gazette * Webster Times, published every Friday* The Patriot, published every Wednesday* WGFP-AM 940, a country music station* Boston Globe* Boston Herald-Library:...

 before I-395 was completed. It still serves as an alternate, local route. Route 146, the Worcester-Providence Turnpike, connects the city with the similar city of Providence, Rhode Island
Providence, Rhode Island
Providence is the capital and most populous city of Rhode Island and was one of the first cities established in the United States. Located in Providence County, it is the third largest city in the New England region...

. Route 20
U.S. Route 20
U.S. Route 20 is an east–west United States highway. As the "0" in its route number implies, US 20 is a coast-to-coast route. Spanning , it is the longest road in the United States, and the route sparsely parallels Interstate 90...

 touches the southernmost tip of Worcester near the Massachusetts Turnpike
Massachusetts Turnpike
The Massachusetts Turnpike is the easternmost stretch of Interstate 90. The Turnpike begins at the western border of Massachusetts in West Stockbridge connecting with the Berkshire Connector portion of the New York State Thruway...

. U.S. 20 is a coast-to-coast route connecting the Atlantic
Atlantic Ocean
The Atlantic Ocean is the second-largest of the world's oceanic divisions. With a total area of about , it covers approximately 20% of the Earth's surface and about 26% of its water surface area...

 to the Pacific Ocean
Pacific Ocean
The Pacific Ocean is the largest of the Earth's oceanic divisions. It extends from the Arctic in the north to the Southern Ocean in the south, bounded by Asia and Australia in the west, and the Americas in the east.At 165.2 million square kilometres in area, this largest division of the World...

, and is the longest road in the United States.

Worcester is the headquarters of the Providence and Worcester, a Class II railroad
Class II railroad
A Class II railroad in the United States is a mid-sized freight-hauling railroad, in terms of its operating revenue. , a railroad with revenues greater than $20.5 million but less than $277.7 million for at least three consecutive years is considered a Class II railroad...

 operating throughout much of southern New England. Worcester is also the western terminus of the Framingham/Worcester
Framingham/Worcester Line
The Framingham/Worcester Line is a railroad line of the MBTA Commuter Rail system, running west from Boston, Massachusetts to Worcester, Massachusetts, though some trains terminate at Framingham, Massachusetts...

 commuter rail
MBTA Commuter Rail
The MBTA Commuter Rail serves as the regional rail arm of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, in the United States. It is operated under contract by the Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad Company a joint partnership of Veolia Transportation, Bombardier Transportation and Alternate...

 line run by the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority
Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, often referred to as the MBTA or simply The T, is the public operator of most bus, subway, commuter rail and ferry systems in the greater Boston, Massachusetts, area. Officially a "body politic and corporate, and a political subdivision" of the...

. Union Station serves as the hub for commuter railway traffic. Built in 1911, the station has been restored to its original grace and splendor, reopening to full operation in 2000. It also serves as an Amtrak
Amtrak
The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak , is a government-owned corporation that was organized on May 1, 1971, to provide intercity passenger train service in the United States. "Amtrak" is a portmanteau of the words "America" and "track". It is headquartered at Union...

 stop, serving the Lake Shore Limited
Lake Shore Limited
The Lake Shore Limited is a daily passenger train route operated by Amtrak in the Northeastern and Midwestern United States. The train runs between Chicago and Albany, NY, where it divides into two sections that provide thru-service to New York and Boston...

from Boston to Chicago
Chicago
Chicago is the largest city in the US state of Illinois. With nearly 2.7 million residents, it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States and the third most populous in the US, after New York City and Los Angeles...

. In October 2008 the MBTA added 5 new trains to the Framingham/Worcester line as part of a plan to add 20 or more trains from Worcester to Boston and also to buy the track from CSX Transportation
CSX Transportation
CSX Transportation operates a Class I railroad in the United States known as the CSX Railroad. It is the main subsidiary of the CSX Corporation. The company is headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida, and owns approximately 21,000 route miles...

. Train passengers may also connect to additional services such as the Vermonter
Vermonter
Amtrak's Vermonter is a 611-mile passenger train service between St. Albans , New York City and Washington, D.C. One trip runs in each direction per day....

line in Springfield
Springfield, Massachusetts
Springfield is the most populous city in Western New England, and the seat of Hampden County, Massachusetts, United States. Springfield sits on the eastern bank of the Connecticut River near its confluence with three rivers; the western Westfield River, the eastern Chicopee River, and the eastern...

.

The Worcester Regional Transit Authority
Worcester Regional Transit Authority
Worcester Regional Transit Authority is a public, non-profit organization charged with providing public transportation to the city of Worcester, Massachusetts and the surrounding towns. The WRTA was created in September 1974 under Chapter 161B of the Massachusetts General Laws...

, or WRTA, manages the municipal bus system. Buses operate intracity as well as connect Worcester to surrounding central Massachusetts communities. The WRTA also operates a shuttle bus between member institutions of the Colleges of Worcester Consortium
Colleges of Worcester Consortium
The Colleges of Worcester Consortium is a non-profit association of 12 colleges and universities located in central Massachusetts. The Consortium claims "works cooperatively both to further the missions of the member institutions individually and to advance higher education regionally." It...

. Worcester is also served by Peter Pan Bus Lines
Peter Pan Bus Lines
Peter Pan Bus Lines is a long-distance bus carrier headquartered in Springfield, Massachusetts. It operates in the northeastern United States. Over four million passengers per year travel on Peter Pan's bus routes....

 and Greyhound Bus Lines, which operate out of Union Station.

The Worcester Regional Airport, owned and operated by Massport lies at the top of Tatnuck Hill, Worcester's highest. The airport consists of one 7000 ft (2,133.6 m) runway and a $15.7 million dollar terminal built to attract airlines and passengers. The airport held numerous airlines from the 1950s through the 1990s, but it has encountered years of spotty commercial flights and disloyal air carriers. On September 4, 2008, Direct Air
Myrtle Beach Direct Air
Direct Air, formerly Myrtle Beach Direct Air, is a business based in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA It used to market domestic charter airline service using the aircraft of charter airlines. In Spring 2009, Direct Air started to operate regular scheduled flights. These services continue to exist...

 announced it would begin serving Worcester to Orlando, Florida, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Myrtle Beach International Airport
Myrtle Beach International Airport is a county-owned public-use airport located three nautical miles southwest of the central business district of Myrtle Beach, in Horry County, South Carolina, United States...

, and Punta Gorda, Florida
Punta Gorda, Florida
Punta Gorda is a city in Charlotte County, Florida, United States. According to the U.S. Census Bureau estimates of 2007, the city had a population of 16,762. It is the county seat of Charlotte County and the only incorporated municipality in the county...

, in the spring of 2009. Currently, this is the only commercial airline servicing the city.

Healthcare

The Worcester State Insane Asylum Hospital
Worcester State Hospital
Worcester State Hospital was a Massachusetts state mental hospital located in Worcester, Massachusetts.The hospital and surrounding associated historic structures are listed as Worcester Asylum and related buildings on the National Register of Historic Places.-Early History:Once known as the...

 (1833) was the first hospital in the United States established to treat mental illnesses.

Worcester is home to the University of Massachusetts Medical School
University of Massachusetts Medical School
The University of Massachusetts Medical School is one of five campuses of the University of Massachusetts system and is home to three schools: the School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Graduate School of Nursing; a biomedical research enterprise; and a range of...

, ranked fourth in primary care education among America’s 125 medical schools in the 2006 U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report is an American news magazine published from Washington, D.C. Along with Time and Newsweek it was for many years a leading news weekly, focusing more than its counterparts on political, economic, health and education stories...

annual guide "America’s Best Graduate Schools." The school also operates the UMass Memorial Health Care
UMass Memorial Health Care
UMass Memorial Health Care is a not-for-profit health care network affiliated with the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Massachusetts, that operates 5 hospitals and a number of health clinics in the Central Massachusetts area...

, the clinical arm of the teaching hospital, which has expanded its locations all over central Massachusetts. St. Vincent Hospital at Worcester Medical Center in the downtown area rounds out Worcester's primary care facilities. Fallon Clinic, presently the largest private multi-specialty group in central Massachusetts, includes St. Vincent's Hospital in its over 30 locations. Fallon Clinic was the creator of Fallon Community Health Plan, a now independent HMO based in Worcester, and one of the largest health maintenance organization
Health maintenance organization
A health maintenance organization is an organization that provides managed care for health insurance contracts in the United States as a liaison with health care providers...

s (HMOs) in the state.

Utilities and public services

Worcester has a municipally owned water supply. Sewage disposal services are provided by the Upper Blackstone Water Pollution Abatement District, which services Worcester as well as some surrounding communities. National Grid USA is the exclusive distributor of electric power
Electric power
Electric power is the rate at which electric energy is transferred by an electric circuit. The SI unit of power is the watt.-Circuits:Electric power, like mechanical power, is represented by the letter P in electrical equations...

 to the city, though due to deregulation, customers now have a choice of electric generation companies. Natural gas
Natural gas
Natural gas is a naturally occurring gas mixture consisting primarily of methane, typically with 0–20% higher hydrocarbons . It is found associated with other hydrocarbon fuel, in coal beds, as methane clathrates, and is an important fuel source and a major feedstock for fertilizers.Most natural...

 is distributed by NSTAR Gas
NSTAR
NSTAR is a utility company that provides retail electricity and natural gas to 1.4 million customers in eastern and central Massachusetts, including the Boston urban area....

; only commercial and industrial customers may choose an alternate natural gas supplier. Verizon, successor to New England Telephone
New England Telephone
The New England Telephone and Telegraph Company, more commonly known as New England Telephone, was a Bell Operating Company that served most of the New England area of the United States as a part of the original AT&T for seven decades, from the creation of the national monopoly in 1907 until...

, NYNEX
NYNEX
NYNEX Corporation was a telephone company that served five New England states as well as most of New York state, except the Rochester area, from 1984 through 1997....

, and Bell Atlantic, is the primary wired telephone service provider for the area. Phone service is also available from various national wireless companies. Cable television
Cable television
Cable television is a system of providing television programs to consumers via radio frequency signals transmitted to televisions through coaxial cables or digital light pulses through fixed optical fibers located on the subscriber's property, much like the over-the-air method used in traditional...

 is available from Charter Communications
Charter Communications
Charter Communications is an American company providing cable television, high-speed Internet, and telephone services to more than 4.7 million customers in 25 states. By revenues, it is the fourth-largest cable operator in the United States, behind Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Cox Communications...

, with Broadband Internet access
Broadband Internet access
Broadband Internet access, often shortened to just "broadband", is a high data rate, low-latency connection to the Internet— typically contrasted with dial-up access using a 56 kbit/s modem or satellite Internet with inherently high latency....

 also provided, while a variety of DSL
Digital Subscriber Line
Digital subscriber line is a family of technologies that provides digital data transmission over the wires of a local telephone network. DSL originally stood for digital subscriber loop. In telecommunications marketing, the term DSL is widely understood to mean Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line ,...

 providers and resellers are able to provide broadband Internet over Verizon-owned phone lines.

The Worcester Fire Department maintains ten fire stations throughout the city and operates an apparatus fleet of 13 engines, 7 ladders, one rescue, one dive water rescue, and one special operations unit out of two divisions, the North Division and the South Division. The Department is staffed by over 400 full-time firefighters and responds to over 30,000 emergency calls annually.

Sister cities

Worcester has the following sister cities
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

: Worcester
Worcester
The City of Worcester, commonly known as Worcester, , is a city and county town of Worcestershire in the West Midlands of England. Worcester is situated some southwest of Birmingham and north of Gloucester, and has an approximate population of 94,000 people. The River Severn runs through the...

, England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 (1998) Piraeus
Piraeus
Piraeus is a city in the region of Attica, Greece. Piraeus is located within the Athens Urban Area, 12 km southwest from its city center , and lies along the east coast of the Saronic Gulf....

, Greece
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

 (2005) Pushkin, Russia
Pushkin, Russia
Pushkin is the name of several inhabited localities in Russia.Urban localities*Pushkin, Saint Petersburg, a town in Pushkinsky District of Saint PetersburgRural localities...

 Afula, Israel

See also

  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Worcester, Massachusetts
  • List of people from Worcester, Massachusetts
  • List of tallest buildings in Worcester, Massachusetts
  • Greater Worcester Land Trust
    Greater Worcester Land Trust
    Founded in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1987, the Greater Worcester Land Trust is a non-profit land conservation organization dedicated to the protection of important lands in Worcester and the surrounding towns...

  • North High School (Worcester, Massachusetts)
    North High School (Worcester, Massachusetts)
    North High School located in Worcester, Massachusetts is a public four-year high school and is one of five public high schools in Worcester, Massachusetts....

  • Worcester Public Library
    Worcester Public Library
    Worcester Public Library is a public library in downtown Worcester, Massachusetts. It was founded in 1859 when local resident John Green donated his personal library to the city for public use. In 2004, the Worcester Library Foundation was established to raise funds and promote the library...

  • Worcester State Hospital
    Worcester State Hospital
    Worcester State Hospital was a Massachusetts state mental hospital located in Worcester, Massachusetts.The hospital and surrounding associated historic structures are listed as Worcester Asylum and related buildings on the National Register of Historic Places.-Early History:Once known as the...


Further reading


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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