Historical Commission
Contact TypeContact Information
Address:
Town Hall, 55 Main Street 
Westford ,MA 01886 
 

The Historical Commission was established January 21, 1975, by unanimous vote of Special Town Meeting under the provisions of Section 8D, Chapter 40 of the Massachusetts General Laws. It has seven members and two alternates, each appointed by the Board of Selectmen to two-year terms.

Westford Historic Documentation Project 2013

The Historic Commission is currently transferring historic information to be accessible on the Town and Historic Commission website.  Starting with Main St., the forms are being scanned from original binders that are in the Town Collection.  This is not the entire collection but will allow most historic records to be accessed remotely.

For more information contact David Gutbrod, Historic Commission.


September 2012 - Historic Resources Showcased in Westford

Imagine: the original Westford Academy (now the Westford Museum) was built during
the first few years of The United States creation. Its construction date of 1794 was just
a few years after the ratification of the Constitution, and a decade after the end of the
Revolutionary War where Westford Residents fought and sacrificed for the success of
the nation.
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It is of no small historic note, that the famous silversmith and revolutionary Paul Revere
sent his youngest son John to the young but prestigious Westford Academy. Many local
history buffs are surprised to learn that the Father of American Civil Engineering
Loammi Baldwin sent his son Loammi Baldwin Jr. to the new school in Westford. The
Baldwin family name is also synonymous with the delicious Baldwin apple cultivated on
the family property in Woburn. The Baldwins became well known for many engineering
projects but are perhaps best known for designing the Middlesex Canal. The
agricultural topics and engineering principles practiced inside this building abounded,
and still spark the imagination as one walks through the building today.

What is truly amazing though, is the surviving building, that remains as a treasure in the
heart of Westford. Part of the memory of Westford, and nearly torn down decades
ago, it has become a testament to the adaptive qualities of the Westford Farmer,
business man, and even the present citizens of this changing community.

Recently, this building narrowly escaped degrading beams and attacks from beetles,
water, and even raccoons and squirrels. With the diligence of the Town Historic
Commission and equal input by the Historic Society and Town Management, it has
survived its latest challenges to live another generation.
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With the cooperation of many historic preservation experts, the building has become a
symbol of the participation, hardwork and devotion to the preservation of town historic
resources. One tool applied to the ongoing restoration in order to keep the town
informed about the progress and truly amazing qualities of the Westford Museum is a
3D scan. This was achieved with the new technology of LIDAR, or using laser scanning,
to record the building. With this information, it will be possible for generations to
come to stabilize, restore and share the architectural dimensions for maintenance,
emergency rebuild, and other unforseen events. From recent ice storms and power
outages to full blown hurricanes, the knowledge that this building has taken the
necessary steps for preservation is evidence of the town-wide committment to historic
reources to be passed on to future generations.
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Download this summary document of the digital scanning work underway at the Westford Museum.

View video of digital scan here - click on the file entitled "3D Scan of Westford Museum."  

July 2012 - RFP Issued for Historical Preservation Planning Support

        RFP available online


September 12, 2012 update: the Historical Commission is reviewing the proposals received and expects to recommend selection of a consultant later this month.



Commission Charter
The Westford Historical Commission is chartered with the preservation, protection and development of the historical and archeological assets of the town. It may research places of historic or archeological value and coordinate the activities of unofficial bodies organized for similar purposes. For the purpose of protecting and preserving such places, it may make such recommendations as it deems necessary to the selectmen and to the Massachusetts Historical Commission that any such place be certified as an historical or archeological landmark. The Historical Commission may hold hearings; may enter into contracts with individuals, organizations and institutions for services; may accept gifts, contributions and bequests of funds from individuals, foundations and governmental bodies; may make and sign agreements; and may do and perform any and all acts necessary or desirable for the purpose of furthering the Commission’s program.  


Meetings
Historical Commission meetings are held at 7:00 PM on the third Wednesday of each month in the Museum Cottage, 4 Boston Road, adjacent to the Westford Museum.  

Parking
There is limited parking available at the Museum and Cottage for patrons of these two facilities. Other parking is available on Lincoln Street and behind the J.V. Fletcher Library. There is also space adjacent to the Town Hall on Main Street.


Programs
Maps of Historic Places & Sites
        
Preservation Efforts  
Preservation Plan Draft
Executive Summary
History of the Community
History of Planning in the Community
Our Community Today
Inventory
National Register
Public Perception
Municipal Regulations
Municipal Policy, Management and Capital Improvements
Action Plan



Summary poster prepared by the Director of Land Use Management for the 2012 Strategic Planning Retreat