Variant name of place


Geographic position

42.6158° N, 70.6625° W


Anderson, Fred and Andrew Cayton. The Dominion of War: Empire and Liberty in North America, 1500-2000. New York, NY: Penguin Books, 2005. Web. Pringle, James Robert. History of the Town and City of Gloucester, Cape Ann, and Massachusetts. Gloucester, MA: James Robert Pringle, 1892. Web.

General note

Gloucester is a city on Cape Ann in the northern part of the Massachusetts Bay. When French explorer Samuel de Champlain came to what would become Gloucester, the local Pawtuckets met him with hostility, and a war broke out between the French and their allied tribes against other Native Americans in the area in the winter of 1606-07. Men of the Dorchester Company arrived from Gloucestershire, England and settled Gloucester in 1623, hoping to make it a fishing colony. They reported a severe decrease in the Native Americans population, as a result of disease that killed off two-thirds of the inhabitants by 1617. There were not enough people to make Gloucester a permanent town until twenty years later, and in 1642, Gloucester -- named for Gloucestershire -- was incorporated. Shipbuilding, farming, and fishing sustained the economy throughout the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, though hampered by the American Revolution. In his 1777 journal, Occom describes his travels throughout Massachusetts during which he came through Gloucester and preached at Elder Winser’s meetinghouse.