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flag  History of Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

Journey back in time to Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

Visit Ayer, Massachusetts, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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Ayer, Massachusetts, USA - Globe Hotel and Main Street, Looking West, Ayer, Mass.

Ayer, Middlesex, MA

Ayer's history dates back to 1667, when the first mill in the agricultural community was built. The settlement sits on what the Nipmuc Indians called Nainacocius. A brook remains with that name. Originally part of Groton, the community was initially called Groton Junction or South Groton. The town of Ayer was incorporated in 1871, and was named in honor of Dr. James Cook Ayer, a prominent resident of Lowell who provided the funding for the construction of the Town Hall.

Included in Ayer are: Camp Devens, Devens, Fort Devens Station, Mitchellville, Pingreyville (Pringeyville), Sandy Pond, Shaker Village, and Willows. mass_lookup.htm

There is MUCH more to discover about Ayer, Massachusetts, USA. Read on!

Ayer Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

Globe Hotel and Main Street, Looking West, Ayer, Mass.
Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

Globe Hotel and Main Street, Looking West, Ayer, Mass.
Main Street, Looking East
Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

Main Street, Looking East
Town Hall
Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

Town Hall

Discover Ayer: History, News, Travel, and Stories

Add informationAdd History/News/Story
Originally part of Groton, Ayer was incorporated February 14, 1871

Massachusetts City and Town Incorporation and Settlement Dates
Ayer, Mass., April 14.
A fire broke out in the building owned by SAMUEL REED, at 11:30 last evening, destroying all the buildings on the north side of Main street between the Worcester and Nashua Railroad and the Lowell freight depot.
All the business portion of the place is destroyed. Not a grocery or a dry good store remains. The loss is estimated at from $100,000 to $200,000.

The property is insured in the Fitchburg Mutual Fire Insurance Company of Fitchburg, $24,630; Central Mutual Fire Insurance Company of Worcester, $5,150; F. C. Currier's Agency, Fitchburg, $9,000; L. C. Park's Agency, Worcester, $3,750. Lowell and Fitchburg were sent to for help, and a steamer and hose carriage from both places arrived.
The cause of the fire is unknown.
Newport Daily News
Newport, Rhode Island
April 15, 1872
Ayer Massachusetts, 1890
Ayer is a progressive railroad town in the northwestern part of Middlesex County, 35 miles from Boston. Groton lies upon the north Westford and Littleton on the east, and the latter also upon the southeast, Harvard on the south, and Shirley on the west. The land is uneven, and in the north quite hilly. Rocky Hill in the northeastern, and Brown Loaf Hill in the southwestern part, are the most notable eminences. Several beautiful ponds, together with Cold-Spring Brook, James Brook, and Nashua River, diversify the scenery. The population in 1885 was 2,190 ; the area of the town, as returned by the assessors, is 4,983 acres ; of which 2,582 acres are woodland. There were 48 farms, yielding, in 1885, the aggregate sum of $46,664. The chief income, however, is from the railroad business, and its manufactures. In the year just mentioned there were 106 steam-railroad employees residing here. Thirty-one manufactories were reported. The chief of these made "wooden goods" (furniture and... Read MORE...

1895 - Ayer
Ayer, air, or Ayer Junction, a post-village of Middlesex co., Mass., in Ayer township, near the Nashua River, and on the Worcester & Nashua Railroad where it crosses the Fitchburg Railroad, 35 miles W. N.W. of Boston, and 15 miles S.W. of Lowell, at the junction of the Stony Brook and Peterborough & Shirley Railroads. Ayer has 5 churches, a bank, a newspaper office, a high and a graded school, an iron-foundry, and manufactures of carriages, farming-implements, leather, lumber, &c. The name of its post-office is Ayer, Pop, in 1880, 1881; in 1890, 2148.
Lippincott's Gazetteer of the World: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World Containing Notices of Over One Hundred and Twenty-five Thousand Places ... Joseph Thomas January 1, 1895 J.B. Lippincott
1908 - Skated On Thin Ice.
Ayer, Mass., Jan. 3. - While skating on Sandy pond, William Baker, sixteen years old, and Howard Reynolds, aged fourteen years, broke through the ice and were drowned.
The News
Frederick, Maryland
January 3, 1908
Ayer, air, or Ayer Junction, a banking post-village and township (town) of Middlesex co., Mass., near the Nashua River and on the Boston and Maine and the Fitchburg Rs., 35 miles WNW. of Boston and 15 miles SW. of Lowell. It has machine-shops, canning establishments, and manufactures of carriages, paper, vinegar, leather, lumber, etc. Pop. of the town in 1890, 2145; in 1900, 2446.
Lippincotts New Gazetteer: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World, Containing the Most Recent and Authentic Information Respecting the Countries, Cities, Towns, Resorts, Islands, Rivers, Mountains, Seas, Lakes, Etc., in Every Portion of the Globe, Part 1 Angelo Heilprin Louis Heilprin - January 1, 1916 J.B. Lippincott - Publisher
2023 - Here's a list of places to go and things to do in Ayer:
Nashua River Rail Trail:
Enjoy a scenic bike ride or a leisurely walk along the Nashua River Rail Trail, which offers picturesque views of the river and surrounding nature.

Pirone Park:
Relax and have a picnic at Pirone Park, a charming green space with playgrounds for kids, sports fields, and walking paths.

Harvard General Store:
Visit the historic Harvard General Store in Ayer, where you can grab a bite to eat, shop for unique gifts, and experience the charm of a classic New England store.

Fort Devens Museum:
Explore the Fort Devens Museum to learn about the history of the former military installation and its impact on the region.

J. H. Robbins Memorial Town Forest:
If you love hiking and nature, head to the J.H. Robbins Memorial Town Forest, offering well-maintained trails and beautiful scenery.

Ayer Lofts Art Gallery:
Discover local art at the Ayer Lofts Art Gallery, showcasing the work of talented artists in the area.

Ayer Public Library:
Spend a quiet...

Discover MY Roots: Ayer Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

We currently have information about 22 ancestors who were born or died in Ayer.

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Ancestors Who Were Married in Ayer, Massachusetts, USA

We currently have information about ancestors who were married in Ayer.

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Genealogy Resources for Ayer

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Updated: 10/8/2023 8:56:16 AM