Massachusetts - State Facts
Admission to Statehood: February 6, 1788 - 6th state
Area: 10555 sq. mi., Land 7838 sq. mi., Water 2717 sq.
mi., 17th Coastline 192 mi., Shoreline 1,519 mi.
Largest Cities: Boston, Worcester, Springfield, Lowell,
Cambridge, Brockton, New Bedford, Fall River, Lynn, Quincy
Highest Point: Mt. Greylock; 3491 feet
Lowest Point: Atlantic coast; sea level
Topography: Jagged indented coast around Cape Cod; flatland
yields to stony upland pastures near central region and gentle
hill country in west; land in west is rocky, sandy and not fertile.
Nickname: Bay State
The Black-Capped Chickadee (Penthestes atricapillus) was adopted
as the official State Bird by the Massachusetts Legislature on
March 21, 1941. It is also known as the titmouse, tomtit, and
the dickybird, and it is one of the most familiar of the North
On a white field is a blue shield emblazoned with the image of
a Native American, Massachuset. He holds a bow in one hand and
an arrow in the other. The arrow is pointing downward representing
peace. The white star represents Massachusetts as one of the
original thirteen states. Around the shield is a blue ribbon
with the motto: " By the Sword We Seek Peace, but Peace
Only Under Liberty". Above the shield is an arm and sword,
representing the first part of the motto.
The mayflower was adopted as the state flower on May 1, 1918.
Origin of state's name: Named after local Indian tribe
whose name means "a large hill place"
Song: All Hail to Massachusetts
words and music by: Arthur Marsh
Tree: American Elm
State Folk Hero: Johnny Appleseed was designated the
official folk hero of the Commonwealth on August 2, 1996. Appleseed
was born John Chapman and lived from 1775(?)-1845. An American
pioneer and hero of folklore, his planting of apple trees from
New England to the Ohio River valley earned him his more popular
State Beverage: Cranberry Juice was named the beverage
of the Commonwealth on May 4, 1970. This was a tribute to the
great Massachusetts cranberry industry, which grows the largest
crop in the world.
Climate: The prevailing wind is from the west, with an
average velocity of 10 to 13 miles per hour. Average monthly
temperatures in Boston range from 28.2 degrees in January to
72.0 degrees in July. The lowest temperature recorded by the
U.S. Weather Bureau in Gloucester since its establishment (October
1870) was -18 degrees in February 1934; the highest, 104 degrees
in July 1911. The normal annual precipitation is 44.23 inches.