Although Freetown went through an industrial period in the mid 1800s thanks to its position on the Taunton and Assonet Rivers, the land has since returned to its pastoral culture. In fact, Freetown is perhaps best known for its 5,217 acres of Freetown-Fall River State Forest which lies primarily in the middle of Freetown.
The forest has more than 50 miles of unpaved roads and trails for walking, hiking, biking, cross-country skiing, dog sledding, off-road vehicle, and equestrian use. Also in the forest is a 227-acre Wampanoag Native American reservation. Profile Rock located in the forest is believed by Wampanoag to be a likeness of Chief Massasoit.
Enjoy a few minutes on a dirt bike video through the lush forest!
Freetown hosts its own elementary schools but shares a high school with Lakeville. Prior to 1950 when the Freetown Elementary School was built, grades one through eight were taught in one and two room old fashioned schoolhouses located throughout the different villages in town. Now, there is a Freetown-Lakeville Intermediate School for grades four and five, plus a Freetown-Lakeville Middle School for grades six through eight. High school students travelled for their educations to a variety of surrounding towns.
Later, in 1959, Freetown and Lakeville voted to form a regional high school – Apponequet Regional High School to serve grades 7-12. Students wishing a vocational education can apply to Old Colony Regional Vocational Technical High School for grades 9-12. Also, because Freetown is a part of Bristol County, high school students may apply for available slots at the Bristol County Agricultural High School.
Freetown was first settled by the English on April 2, 1659 on the banks of the Assonet River, when the areas of Assonet and Fall River were purchased for 20 coats, two rugs, two iron pots, two kettles, one little kettle, eight pairs of shoes, six pairs of stockings, one dozen hoes, one dozen hatchets, and two yards of broadcloth from the Wampanoag Indians in an exchange known as Ye Freemen’s Purchase. Its population slowly grew, and it existed as a Proprietary settlement until it was officially incorporated in July 1683. It remained a part of Plymouth Colony until that colony merged with the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1685. The town was the fifth municipal corporation established in Bristol County.
Throughout the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries, Freetown served as a very industrious area. Blast furnaces, fishing, textiles, and manufacturing all came to and left Freetown, eventually allowing the area to regain its former rural charm. In the mid-1800s it was a source of fresh trout from one of the first established fish farms serving first class dining cars on trains and ocean liners.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) provides commuter rail service to neighboring Lakeville via the Middleborough-Lakeville line, whose terminus is on the border of the two towns. Currently, plans exist to extend service to Fall River via Assonet in the future. Of all the towns in the South Coast region, this commuter rail service makes the trip from Freetown and Lakeville to Boston the easiest for its residents.
Please contact BOLD Moves Real Estate for all your questions regarding this great community of Freetown, MA. 508-999-9800.