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Copyright 2008 by Open Horizons and John Kremer
Last modified: 11/01/07

Hot Times, Cool Places

Massachusetts Vacation Basic Facts

Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism,
10 Park Plaza #4510, Boston MA 02116;
617-973-8500; 800-227-6277; Fax: 617-973-8525. Email:

State Bean: navy bean

State Berry: cranberry

State Beverage: cranberry juice

State Bird: black-capped chickadee

State Building Rock and Monument Stone: granite

State Cat: tabby cat

State Ceremonial March: The Road to Boston

State Children's Author and Illustrator: Dr. Seuss (Theodor Geisel)

State Children's Book: Make Way for Ducklings

State Cookie: chocolate chip cookie

State Dessert: Boston cream pie

State Dog: Boston terrier

State Donut: Boston cream donut

State Explorer Rock: Dighton Rock

State Fish: cod

State Flower: mayflower

State Folk Dance: square dancing

State Folk Hero: Johnny Appleseed

State Folk Song: Massachusetts

State Fossil: theropod dinosaur tracks

State Game Bird: wild turkey

State Gem: rhodonite

State Glee Club Song: The Great State of Massachusetts

State Heroine: Deborah Samson

State Historical Rock: Plymouth Rock

State Horse: Morgan horse

State Insect: ladybug

State Marine Mammal: right whale

State Mineral: babingtonite

State Muffin: corn muffin

State Nickname: Bay State, Old Colony State, Baked Bean State, Pilgrim State

State Ode: Ode to Massachusetts

State Patriotic Song: Massachusetts (Because of You Our Land Is Free)

State Poem: Blue Hills of Massachusetts

State Polka: Say Hello to Someone from Massachusetts

State Quarter:

State Rock: Rosbury Puddingstone

State Seal:

State Shell: New England Neptune

State Soil: Paxton soil series

State Song: All Hail to Massachusetts

State Tree: American elm

State Vessel: Schooner Ernestina

State Capitals

Plymouth, Massachusetts First settlement.

Boston, Massachusetts Current state capital.


Massachusetts; All Hail to Massachusetts; Massachusetts (Because of You Our Land Is Free); The Great State of Massachusetts; Say Hello to Someone from Massachusetts; Ode to Massachusetts; The Road to Boston; Please Come to Boston.

State Specials

It is illegal to snore in Massachusetts unless your windows are closed and locked.

1621: First Thanksgiving celebration

1634: First American public park (Boston Common)

1635: First American public secondary school (Boston Latin School)

1636: First American college (Harvard College)

1638: First American printing press set up in Cambridge by Stephen Daye

1639: First American post office (Richard Fairbanks' tavern in Boston)

1639: First free American public school (Mather School in Dorchester)

1646: First American ironworks (Saugus)

1653: First American public library (Boston Public Library)

1704: First regularly issued American newspaper (Boston News-Letter)

1716: First American lighthouse (The Boston Light)

1789: First American novel (The Power of Sympathy by William Hill Brown)

1806: First church built by free blacks (African Meeting House in Boston)

1826: First horse drawn railroad in America (from Quincy to Charlestown)

1827: First American swimming school

1837: First telegraph (Samuel Morse)

1839: First vulcanized rubber (Charles Goodyear)

1840: First typewriter (Charles Thurber)

1845: First sewing machine (Elias Howe)

1846: First use of anesthesia (William T.G. Morton)

1850: First National Women's Rights Convention (Worcester)

1865: First professional architect training in America (MIT by Robert Ware)

1875: First American Christmas card (Louis Prang, printer)

1876: First telephone (Alexander Graham Bell)

1877: First woman to earn a Ph.D. in the U.S. (Boston University)

1881: First American country club for outdoor pursuits (Brookline Country Club)

1891: First basketball game (James Naismith, Springfield)

1891: Fig Newtons invented by James Henry Mitchell and named for the town of Newton, Massachusetts

1893: First successful gasoline-powered automobile (Frank and Charles Duryea)

1895: First volleyball game (William Morgan at Holyoke)

1896: First public beach in America (Revere Beach)

1897: First marathon in America (Boston Marathon)

1898: First American subway (Boston)

1903: First trans-Atlantic radio broadcast

1907: First fire truck (Knox Manufacturing Company)

1924: First mutual fund (L. Sherman Adams)

1925: First woman U.S. legislator (Edith Nourse Rogers)

1926: First liquid fueled rocket launched (Robert Goddard)

1928: First computer developed by Dr. Vannevar Bush of MIT

1930: First frozen food (Clarence Birdseye)

1930s: First chocolate chip cookies (Ruth Wakefield of the Toll House Inn)

1944: First digital computer (Howard Aiken of Harvard University)

1947: First microwave oven (Perry Spencer of Raytheon)

1947: First instant camera (Edwin Land)

1947: First use of chemotherapy to treat cancer (Sidney Farber)

1954: First kidney transplant (Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston)

1961: First nuclear powered surface ship launched (Quincy)

1969: Precurser to the Internet introduced (ARPANET)

1971: First email (Ray Tomlinson)

1976: First First Night (Boston)

1976: First reading machine (Kurzweil)

1979: First electronic spreadsheet (VisiCalc by Daniel Brickman)

1980: First to decode DNA (Walter Gilbert)

Famous Bay Staters

Massachusetts Fun Facts

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