Town of Grafton
Welcome to Grafton, Massachusetts
Originally settled in 1724, Grafton was incorporated in 1735. The town sits on nearly 23 square miles off land originally inhabited by members of the Nipmuc nation of American Indians. Grafton’s mills, powered by nearby water sources, played a role in the American Industrial Revolution. Grafton’s current Town Common dates back to 1738, and its Congregational Church was constructed of timber from Grafton’s first meetinghouse. Some of the homes built by the town’s first residents are still located nearby. Grafton is named for Charles FitzRoy, Duke of Grafton, a grandson of Charles II of England.
Grafton is located 43 miles west-southwest of Boston in semi-rural Central Massachusetts. Other towns bordering Grafton include Shrewsbury to the north, Northbridge to the south, Millbury to the west, and Upton to the east. The town’s zip code is 01519.
Grafton is easily accessible by MBTA commuter rail at the Grafton Station on the Framingham/Worcester line.
According to the 2010 Census, Grafton is home to a population of 17,765, composed of approximately 5,700 households. Average household size was calculated to be 2.54 people.
In 2013, Grafton’s median household income was $73,115, with an average home value of $311,611. In 2014, the unemployment rate stood at 4.9% -- below the state average. Many Grafton residents are employed in technical, management, and sales industries, with nearly 90% of adult residents holding a high school degree and nearly one-third in possession of a Bachelor’s degree.
Grafton’s Police Department consists of 24 employees, including 19 sworn personnel. The town is comprised of three stations.
Other town services include its Council on Aging, a community television station, a recreation department, Veterans Services, the town library, and town water and sewer departments. Information on the above services, as well as the Grafton School Department, can be found at the Grafton Memorial Municipal Center.
Grafton’s municipal and government services are accessible here: http://www.grafton-ma.gov/.
Grafton’s local government consists of a five-member elected Board of Selectmen. Selectmen are responsible for a variety of town-wide appointments.
Grafton’s Recreation Department offers various programs for all ages in sports and the arts. The department maintains fields and facilities around town, including parks and beaches, and sponsors town events that include Stories in the Park and a summer concert series.
Silver Lake Beach provides residents recreational opportunities such as swimming, boating, fishing, and concessions.
Grafton’s Free Public Library provides residents a variety of opportunities from book groups and children’s story time to special events and museum passes as well as affording residents access to a collection of media materials.
The town is also home to a cultural council, a local chapter of the Lions Club, and shares a Rotary International club with nearby Shrewsbury. The Willard House and Clock Museum offers a unique glance at New England’s history. Grafton hosts the Harvest Home Festival in November and is home to a garden club, a Shakespeare club, and a drum circle.
The Grafton Historical Society, located on the Town Common, was established in 1964 with a mission to collect and preserve the town’s rich history. The society hosts programs throughout the year. The town is home to the Community Harvest Project, a volunteer farming organization and the Town Barn on Brigham Hill Road.
Annual events in Grafton include the Christmas Town Celebration in December and the Apple Pie Social held on the Grafton Commons each September.
Grafton’s six public schools include:
Millbury Street Elementary School (grades 2-6)
North Street Elementary School (grades 2-6)
North Grafton Elementary School (grades Pre-K-1)
South Grafton Elementary School (grades Pre-K-1)
Grafton Middle School (grades 6-8)
Grafton Memorial Senior High School (grades 9-12)
Additionally, Touchstone Community School (grades Pre-K-8) and Silver Spruce Montessori School (grades Pre-K-3) are private schools located in Grafton. There are also a number of privately-run preschools in town.
Grafton’s schools have recently implemented a school choice program.
A large Stop & Shop plaza provides residents with groceries and other services. Grafton is also home to multiple pizzerias and Chinese restaurants, as well as the Post Office Pub restaurant and Swirls & Scoops ice cream shop.
Grafton Fun Facts
The bandstand in Grafton’s Common was built in 1935 and served as a set piece for a movie filmed in Grafton called “Ah, Wilderness.”