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Oakham #30: Central MA’s Best Communities

Wednesday, June 27, 2012



#30 ranking Oakham is secluded in the hills of northwest Worcester County, and has preserved its rural and tranquil atmosphere since its incorporation in 1762. Oakham grew mostly as a farming town, but also had success with wagon manufacturing, wire products, and hat and bonnet shops.

The town is located in the watershed area of the Quabbin Reservoir, with about 30 percent of the land owned by the Department of Conservation and Recreation. 

Oakham's highest rankings are for economic condition (#15) and affordability (#22), but the town's overall rank is pulled down by its restaurant ranking (#71) and its safety ranking (#56).

Oakham by the numbers

Established: 1775
Population: 1,902
Median household income: $77,396
Median housing price: $203,000

2012 Best Communities rankings
Overall ranking: 30
Affordability ranking: 22
Education ranking: 29
Economic condition ranking: 15
Safety ranking: 56
Arts & Culture ranking: 38
Restaurant ranking: 71

History in a nutshell:

Incorporated in 1762 and currently celebrating its 250th anniversary, the town has remained in touch with its agricultural roots. The town lost one-third of its land in the 1930s with the building of the Quabbin Reservoir. Before the construction of the reservoir, the town was known for manufacturing carriages and hats, and benefited from the town’s railroad stop.

Famous residents:  

Henry Wright, Author 

Famous residents source: Wikipedia
Additional reporting by Grace Fenton


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