5 Interesting Facts About Massachusetts

Massachusetts has a rich history being one of the original 13 colonies. Salem is known for the witch trials but that’s not all. It has a history closely tied to that of America. It is where the American Revolution was born. There was the Boston Tea Party and the Sons of Liberty. The founding fathers hatched their plans there. The Fig Newton and chocolate chips cookies have their origin in Massachusetts.

Dunkin Donuts

There are Dunkin Donuts locations nationwide but they got their start in Massachusetts. The first Dunkin Donuts opened in 1948 in Quincy, Massachusetts by William Rosenberg. The original name was Open Kettle but he changed it in 1950. He got the idea after selling food to construction sites where coffee and donuts were the most popular items. The restaurant was very successful and Rosenberg started selling franchises in 1955 and by 1963, the 100th location opened. In 1990, the company was purchased by Allied Lyons. Now it is a part of Inspire Brands with thousands of locations. Even though there are Dunkin Donuts across the nation, it is still very much associated with New England, particularly Massachusetts. They are very serious about their Dunkin Donuts.  

Clam Chowder

The people in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts take their clam chowder very serious. It is one of the iconic foods of New England. However, there is a war of sorts in the Northeast regarding clam chowder. There is the famous New England clam chowder versus Manhattan clam chowder. The biggest difference between the two is that Manhattan clam chowder involves tomatoes and as any true New Englander will tell you, that is a crime against nature. They loathe tomatoes in their chowder so much that Massachusetts has actually made it illegal to put tomatoes in clam chowder in 1939.  


Chargoggagoggmanchaoggagoggchaubunaguhgamaugg may look like a bunch of gibberish, but in fact it happens to be the name of a lake near Webster, Massachusetts. The name comes from Loup, an Algonquian language. It was rumored to mean “You fish on your side, I fish on my side, and nobody fish in the middle.” However, a more accurate translation might be “Englishmen at Manchaug at the fishing place at the boundary although.” Most people just call it Webster Lake though. It is also the longest name for a geographic location in the United States and the sixth longest in the world. Locals do take pride in being able to say the whole 45 letter word. 

Paper House

Near Rockport, Massachusetts there is a cabin that is constructed of over 100,000 newspapers. Elis F. Stenmen was a mechanical engineer who began constructing his summer home in 1922. He collected thousands of newspapers over the course of 20 years and built his cabin. The walls are1 inch thick and are made of 215 layers of newspapers that are glued together with water, apple peels and flour then sealed with a layer of varnish. He chose newspaper because he thought it would make good insulation. Stenmen even constructed furniture for the cabin out of newspaper. The Paper House is still there and is open for visitors.

Museum of Bad Art

Massachusetts is home to an interesting museum, the Museum of Bad Art. It is a privately owned museum that got its start in 1994 by antique dealer Scott Wilson. He had discovered a discarded painting in the trash, the now signature piece Lucy in the Field with Flowers, and decided to show his friends. His friend Jerry Reilly was interested and showcased it and told his friends to let Wilson know if they discovered any other bad art. Eventually, they had a collection and held an exhibit in Reilly’s basement. The collection grew and became too big for the basement and the museum was moved to the basement of Dedham Community Theater. They opened a second location in Somerville, Massachusetts in 2008. There are also now a couple of other locations. MOBA describes itself as “the only museum dedicated to bringing the worst of art to the widest of audiences.”