Adams MA , Berkshire MA , Western MA. What do the Abrams tank,, voting women, the game of monopoly, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dr. Seuss, Field's Department Store, graham crackers and the Smith &Wesson brand all have in common? Each and every one of these items owe their beginning to a person born in Western MA and a few in Berkshire County MA. Western Massachusetts and Berkshire County therein have contributed much to the American way of life we live today. Creighton W. Abrams, Susan B. Anthony, Milton Bradley, Pete A. Laird, Thomas Seuss Geisel, Marshall Field, Sylvester Graham, Horace Smith and Daniel B. Wesson all hailed from Western Massachusetts. In fact the birthplace home of Susan B. Anthony is now a museum in Adams MA.
Adams MA officially became a town in 1778 being incorporate and named for Samuel Adams the Revolutionary War hero. The earliest settlers were Quakers who immigrated from Rhode Island. Although farming had been the original main stay of Adams, many farmers moved west prior to the Civil War looking for large land grants and better farming conditions. The war of 1812 saw the rise of the textile mills and Adams was situated and ready to provide the textiles that were no longer available from Britain. The cotton being shipped from the south was spun and billions of yards of cloth streamed from the mills along the rivers in New England into cities and towns of the new nation.
It was during the 1800's that downtown Adams grew into what it is today. In 1889 the Plunkett brothers founded the Berkshire Cotton Manufacturing Company in Adams. The Plunketts were close friends with President McKinley and the President journeyed to the town in 1897 to lay the cornerstone of the town library. After President McKinley's assassination in 1903 a larger than life statue of him was erected beside the library. Berkshire Cotton Manufacturing Company closed in 1958 and the town lost 1000 jobs. Currently the largest manufacturer in the town is Specialty Minerals which mines and processes calcium carbonate used in antacids and other medical products.
No longer the home of large industry the town has become a tourist and second home destination for families seeking to escape the cities of New York state and New Jersey. Many "snowbirds" claim Adams as their summer home. Adams is also home to many professors from MCLA College and Williams College located in North Adams MA and Williamstown MA respectively. Snowbirds are drawn to the refreshing coolness of Berkshire summers in the mountains and the cultural venues throughout Berkshire County. Consider Adams MA as your next destination or for your summer home or stay for the beauty and serenity that mark the town of Adams MA.