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Fitchburg is the second largest city in Worcester Countymarker, Massachusettsmarker, United Statesmarker. The population was 39,102 at the 2000 census. Fitchburg is home to Fitchburg State Collegemarker as well as 17 public and private elementary and high schools.

History

Fitchburg was first settled in 1730 and was officially incorporated in 1764. It is named for John Fitch, a settler. In 1748, Fitch and his family were abducted to Canadamarker by Native Americans, but returned the next year.

Fitchburg is situated on both the Nashua Rivermarker and a railroad line. The original Fitchburg Railroad ran through the Hoosac Tunnelmarker, linking Bostonmarker and Albany, New Yorkmarker. The tunnel was built using the Burleigh Rock Drill, designed and built in Fitchburg. Fitchburg was a 19th century industrial center. Originally operated by water power, large mills produced machines, tools, clothing, paper, and firearms. The city is noted for its architecture, particularly in the Victorian style, built at the height of its mill town prosperity. As one of two shire towns The Northern Worcester County Registry of Deeds, established in 1903, and the county jail on Water Street were two county facilities located in Fitchburg.

The 1961 film Return to Peyton Place was filmed in Fitchburg.

Geography

Fitchburg is located at (42.578689, -71.803383) .

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 28.1 square miles (72.7 km²), of which, 27.8 square miles (71.9 km²) of it is land and 0.3 square miles (0.8 km²) of it (1.07%) is water. The city is drained by the Nashua River. Fitchburg is very hilly and is often referred to as the second hilliest city in the United States after San Francisco, though North Bergen, New Jersey actually is. North Bergen is the city with the second most hills per square mile in the United States behind San Francisco.

Demographics

200 px
As of the census of 2000, there were 39,102 people, 14,943 households, and 9,369 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,408.5 people per square mile (543.9/km²). There were 16,002 housing units at an average density of 576.4/sq mi (222.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.86% White, 3.65% African American, 0.35% Native American, 4.27% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 6.78% from other races, and 3.06% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 14.97% of the population. 16.4% were of French, 12.4% French Canadian, 10.5% Italian, 9.8% Irish and 5.7% English ancestry according to Census 2000. 77.2% spoke English, 13.4% Spanish, 3.2% French and 1.9% Hmong as their first language.

There were 14,943 households out of which 31.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.1% were married couples living together, 14.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.3% were non-families. 30.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.13.

In the city the population was spread out with 25.8% under the age of 18, 11.6% from 18 to 24, 28.8% from 25 to 44, 19.2% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 91.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.7 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $37,004, and the median income for a family was $43,291. Males had a median income of $35,855 versus $26,558 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,256. About 12.1% of families and 15.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.1% of those under age 18 and 11.2% of those age 65 or over.

Government

Post Office in c.
1910


Education

Fitchburg has a rich football tradition, and every year they play cross-town rivals Leominstermarker in the Thanksgiving day game, which is a proud member of a list of high school football rivalries in the United States.

State Normal School in c.
1920, now Fitchburg State College
Public Schools:

  • Goodrich School
  • Crocker Elementary School
  • McKay Elementary School
  • Reingold Elementary School
  • South Street School
  • North Central Charter Essential School
  • Museum Partnership School
  • Arthur M. Longsjo Jr. Middle School
  • Memorial Middle School
  • Fitchburg High School
  • Fitchburg Evening Alternative High School
  • Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School, also called Monty Tech
Private Schools:

Colleges:

Transportation

Transportation for Fitchburg is largely supplied by the Montachusett Regional Transit Authority (MART). MART has 4 bus routes in Fitchburg, two of which overlap into Leominstermarker.

The MBTA operates a commuter train to Boston'smarker North Stationmarker. The commuter rail stop serving Fitchburg is the Fitchburg stopmarker on the Fitchburg Line.

Fitchburg Municipal Airportmarker, located on the border of Fitchburg and Leominster, serves as the air hub of Fitchburg.

Business

Main Street, looking east, in c.
1912
* Throughout the early Twentieth Century, Fitchburg was known for its paper industry which occupied the banks of the Nashua River and employed a large segment of the European immigrant population. It has been noted by many residents in Fitchburg, that the Nashua river would be dyed the color the paper mills had been coloring the paper that day.

Media

Newspapers



Television

  • Fitchburg Access Television


Radio

  • WPKZ, AM-1280


Culture

Amateur racer in the Fitchburg Longsjo Classic, 2006.
Fitchburg's cultural highlights include:

Use in popular culture

In the fictional Harry Potter universe, Fitchburg is the hometown of the professional Quidditch team the Fitchburg Finches.

Notable residents

Nixey Callahan baseball card


Sister cities



References

  1. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0055370/
  2. MART system Map & Schedule, Fitchburg/Leominster


External links




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