About Pembroke, MA

Pembroke is an appealing upscale suburban town located on the South Shore of Massachusetts in Plymouth County. It is 26 miles south of Boston with a population of approximately 19,000.

With easy access to Route 3, a major highway connecting to Boston via Interstate 93 to the North, many Pembroke residents work in the Greater Boston Area. Access to the MBTA Commuter Rail service is available in nearby Hanson, Halifax and Kingston and the MBTA Red Line in Braintree and Quincy.

groupThe town is governed by the Open Town Meeting form of government, typical of smaller municipalities in the New England region, and is led by an executive secretary and a board of selectmen.

Town’s History

Before incorporating as a separate town in 1712, Pembroke was formerly part of Duxbury. Its geography and natural resources provided the basis for its settlement patterns, commerce and recreation. The earliest European settlers arrived in 1650 and settled in the vicinity of Herring Brook. Until then, only two Native American tribes, the Wampanoags and the Massachusetts, were residents. They called the area Mattakeesett, which means “place of much fish”.

The Pembroke Iron Works was established in 1720 and used iron dredged from the bottom of the ponds. Ice was cut from the ponds, stored in icehouses, and used in the summer months for food preservation. The ponds and streams also provided power for various mills, including grist, flour and sawmills.

Shipbuilding was among the area’s industries, with five yards along the North River, one of which built the Beaver, a vessel made famous for its role in the Boston Tea Party, and the Maria, memorialized on the Pembroke town seal.

By the turn of the 20th century, mills had sprung up along the river, and the town’s ponds and streams provided the water for cranberry bogs. Because of rail service from Brockton, the town’s ponds also provided recreation and vacation spots for city dwellers. The attractiveness of the ponds for summer recreation led to the development of numerous, dense cottage colonies built along their shores. The ponds are currently used for recreation, municipal water supplies and irrigation for cranberry bogs.

groupBy the early twentieth century box factories were producing large quantities of shoe boxes for the local shoe industry and crates for the cranberry and poultry industry. One of the largest of the box-manufacturing firms was the J. H. West Box Factory that employed over 100 workers, many of whom lived in the immediate vicinity of the box mill.

Pembroke has traditionally been an agricultural and industrial community, but since World War II it has increasingly developed into a fairly affluent and desirable community, with new home developments geared towards upmarket buyers.

What Pembroke Offers Today

Several ponds are part of the town’s resources along with the North River and Indian Head River. These ponds are the home of herring. Each year the herring are celebrated at the town’s annual fish fry, “Grande Old Fish Fry”, that is usually held the first weekend of May with a fun day of music, games, food and much more.

groupPembroke Country Club, is an 18 hole course featuring 6,532 yards of green

Pembroke Public Library encourages the love of reading and offers services, program and museum passes

The Pembroke school system has a great reputation. It includes three elementary schools, one middle school and one high school

Many parks and recreation areas for walking, biking, hiking, and other outdoor activities.

Active and successful youth sports programs.

Nearby shopping: The Derby Street Shoppes, Hingham, MA Kingston Collection, Kingston, MA , South Shore Mall, Braintree, MA and Colony Place, Plymouth, MA

groupMinutes to local area beaches: Duxbury Beach and Marshfield’s nine public beaches: Rexhame, Fieldston, Sunrise, Ocean Bluff, Brant Rock, Blackman’s Point, Blue Fish Cove, Burke’s and Green Harbor. Short drive to Cape Cod and world class beaches.

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