Old Historical State, County and City Maps of Massachusetts
Maps of Massachusetts
Most historical maps of Massachusetts were published in atlases. Within the atlases are historical maps, illustrations, and histories many of which contain family names ideal for genealogical research.
There were very few Massachusetts state maps published prior to 1800. The first maps and records were made by John Smith in 1614.
Some Historical Massachusetts Maps can indicate who owned specific property in the state and which towns held the county seat at the time. This information is a valuable starting point for your research pointing you to the right location of records.
There is a series of 18th century maps from 1794 to 1795 covering several towns in Massachusetts. It was published by the Massachusetts Archives. There is also another map series that was done in 1831 originally.
Copies of it are on file in many different libraries. Many Massachusetts towns also have their own collections of town maps from different times, which can be used to track dwellings and land ownership over a certain time period.
F.W. Beers atlases were commonly made depicting maps of New England states in the 1870s. Most large libraries have copies of those maps, which are the size of folios, on file. Those maps often showed churches, residences and owners, roads, cemeteries, and schools.
The Massachusetts Archives is home to several collections of maps showing early land distribution in the state, as well as depicting town lots. Multiple town offices have excellent printed maps on file as well. So does the New England Historic Genealogical Society.
In 1629 the Massachusetts Bay Company had obtained a charter empowering the company to trade and colonize in New England between the Charles and Merrimack rivers from King Charles I. The grant was similar to that of the Virginia Company in 1609.
In 1630 The Massachusetts Bay Colony was settled by a group of about 1,000 Puritan refugees from England. in 1684 the company’s charter was annulled and the substitution of royal government under a new charter granted in 1691.
The charter of 1691 merged the Plymouth colony and Maine into the Massachusetts Bay Colony and was renamed The Province of Massachusetts Bay until 1775.
Massachusetts 10 largest cities are Boston, Worcester, Springfield, Lowell, Cambridge, New Bedford, Brockton, Quincy, Lynn and Fall River. Learn more about Historical Facts of Massachusetts Counties.
Map of Massachusetts County Formations 1683-1947
This Interactive Map of Massachusetts Counties show the historical boundaries, names, organization, and attachments of every county, extinct county and unsuccessful county proposal from the creation of Massachusetts from 1683 to 1947. Massachusetts contains 14 counties.
Massachusetts County Map Formation by Year
Massachusetts County Map Abbreviations
- unorg. = unorganized
- g. = gained
- w. = with
- fr. = from
- atmt. = attachment
- exch = exchanged
- nca.= non county area
- ch. = changed
Old Historical Atlas Maps of Massachusetts
This Historical Massachusetts Map Collection are from original copies so you can see Massachusetts as our ancestors saw them over a hundred years ago.
Some Massachusetts map years (not all) have cities, railroads, P.O. locations, township outlines and other features useful to the Massachusetts researcher.
External Massachusetts Map Links
- 1778 Eastern part of Florida, of Georgia, and South Carolina – – This map shows the east coast from Cape Fear to Saint Augustine, giving excellent detail mostly along the coast, but as far inland as Augusta. Detail includes rivers, roads, towns, forts and Indian settlements. This is one of the best and most detailed maps of the southeastern coast at the time of the Revolution, a region which was the focus of much of the late action in the war
- 1795 Map of Georgia state to MS River – one of a small handful produced within the United States prior to 1800. Appeared within the first edition of the first gazetteer of the U.S. Longitude given with Philadelphia as prime meridian. Georgia extends from the Atlantic Ocean across to the Mississippi river. New Orleans seen within West Florida. Tenassee (sic) named above beside Georgia. Mis-named swamp in northern Florida.
Massachusetts County Map of Road and Highway’s
The Massachusetts D.O.T. Highway Department does not have Massachusetts County Map available at this time.