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Buckland, Massachusetts
Buckland Town Hall
Buckland Town Hall
Official seal of Buckland, Massachusetts
Location in Franklin County in Massachusetts
Location in Franklin County in Massachusetts
Country United States
State Massachusetts
County Franklin
Settled 1779
Incorporated 1779
 • Type Open town meeting
 • Total 19.9 sq mi (51.5 km2)
 • Land 19.7 sq mi (50.9 km2)
 • Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
690 ft (210 m)
 • Total 1,816
 • Density 91.33/sq mi (35.26/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (Eastern)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 413
FIPS code 25-09595
GNIS feature ID 0618159

Buckland is a town in Franklin County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 1,816 at the 2020 census. The town shares the village of Shelburne Falls with neighboring Shelburne. The town center at Shelburne Falls is the western end of the Bridge of Flowers, a local tourist attraction.

Buckland is part of the Springfield, Massachusetts Metropolitan Statistical Area.


Buckland, Massachusetts 1850-68
Buckland circa 1850-1868

Buckland was first settled in 1742 as "No Town", as it was not currently part of either the village of Charlemont or Ashfield, which the land belonged to as one large town. A sawmill was set up that year by Othneil Taylor and Asaph White, and eventually settlement occurred. However, the townspeople did not want to cross the Deerfield River or travel the long distance to Ashfield Village to attend services, so they petitioned the Massachusetts General Court for a separate incorporation. The town was incorporated on April 14, 1779 as Buckland, presumably named for the abundant hunting in the area.

Buckland was the birthplace of Mary Lyon, founder of the Mount Holyoke Female Seminary, now known as Mount Holyoke College.


Shelburne Falls Truss Bridge
Shelburne Falls Truss Bridge carries Routes 2A and 112 across the Deerfield River

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 19.9 square miles (51.5 km2), of which 19.7 square miles (50.9 km2) is land and 0.19 square miles (0.5 km2), or 1.05%, is water. Buckland is located in western Franklin County, and is bordered by Charlemont to the north, Shelburne to the northeast, Conway to the southeast, Ashfield to the south, and Hawley to the west. Buckland's town center is located 13 miles (21 km) west of Greenfield, 40 miles (64 km) north-northwest of Springfield, and 103 miles (166 km) west-northwest of Boston.

Buckland lies along the banks of the Deerfield River, which bends from northward to westward along the town line. Clesson Brook and Clark Brook flow northward through town towards the river, with the former forming the main valley in the town. To either side of the valley lie several hills, including Walnut Hill, Drank Hill and Snow Mountain to the west and Mary Lyon Hill and Moonshine Hill to the east, both of which are between the two brooks. Moonshine Hill is also home to a small state forest.

A short section of Massachusetts Route 2, known as the Mohawk Trail, passes through the northeast corner of town. The nearest interstate, Interstate 91, passes through nearby Greenfield.

There is a park and ride lot located on Route 2, near the bridge over the river to Shelburne Falls. South of the river, the freight rail line passes from Conway in the east towards the Hoosac Tunnel through the mountains to the west. Buckland lies along the Charlemont bus line of the Franklin Regional Transit Authority (FRTA), but has no scheduled stops in town (the nearest being in Charlemont and Shelburne Falls). The nearest Amtrak station is in Greenfield, and the nearest small air service is at Turners Falls. The nearest national air service is at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut.


Historical population
Year Pop. ±%
1840 1,110 —    
1850 1,056 −4.9%
1860 1,702 +61.2%
1870 1,946 +14.3%
1880 1,739 −10.6%
1890 1,570 −9.7%
1900 1,446 −7.9%
1910 1,573 +8.8%
1920 1,433 −8.9%
1930 1,497 +4.5%
1940 1,527 +2.0%
1950 1,605 +5.1%
1960 1,664 +3.7%
1970 1,892 +13.7%
1980 1,864 −1.5%
1990 1,928 +3.4%
2000 1,991 +3.3%
2010 1,902 −4.5%
2020 1,816 −4.5%
* = population estimate.
Source: United States Census records and Population Estimates Program data.
Bridge of Flowers
The Bridge of Flowers

As of the census of 2000, there were 1,991 people, 772 households, and 542 families residing in the town. By population, Buckland ranks ninth out of the twenty-six towns in Franklin County, and 291st out of the 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts. The population density was 101.8 people per square mile (39.3/km2), which ranks seventh in the county and 280th in the Commonwealth. There were 839 housing units at an average density of 42.9 per square mile (16.6/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 96.53% White, 0.45% African American, 0.45% Native American, 0.65% Asian, 0.50% from other races, and 1.41% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.16% of the population.

There were 772 households, out of which 33.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.1% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.7% were non-families. 21.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.00.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 25.0% under the age of 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 26.4% from 25 to 44, 27.6% from 45 to 64, and 13.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.3 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $45,833, and the median income for a family was $51,420. Males had a median income of $38,684 versus $24,977 for females. The per capita income for the town was $20,033. About 3.5% of families and 6.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.9% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.


Buckland is a member of the Mohawk Trail Regional School District, along with Ashfield, Charlemont, Colrain, Hawley, Heath, Plainfield, Rowe, and Shelburne. Students attend Buckland-Shelburne Regional Elementary School, which also serves the neighboring town of Shelburne which serves K–6. High school students then attend Mohawk Trail Regional High School. Mohawk Trail Regional's athletics teams are nicknamed the Warriors, and their school colors are blue and gold. There are several private, religious and charter schools located in the Greenfield area, with the most prominent being Deerfield Academy in Deerfield, Northfield Mount Hermon School in Gill, the Academy at Charlemont in Charlemont, Eaglebrook School in Deerfield, and Stoneleigh-Burnham School in Greenfield.

The nearest community college, Greenfield Community College, is located in Greenfield. The nearest state college is Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts in North Adams, and the nearest state university is the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The nearest private colleges, including members of the Five Colleges and Seven Sisters, are located southeast in the Northampton area.

See also

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