Lowell History Chronology

 Benjamin Franklin Butler
Bust of Benjamin Franklin Butler, Civil War General, Congressman, and Governor

Prepared by Richard F. Leach — 2013 update by Eileen Loucraft

1635 First English settlements on the Merrimack River; and also on the Concord River.
1643 County of Middlesex created.
1644 Passaconaway, Sachem of the Merrimack Valley Indians, submits to John Winthrop, the English Governor.
1647 John Eliot, the Apostle of the Indians, first preaches at Wamesit (now in Lowell)
1653 Town of Chelmsford is founded.
1656 General Daniel Gookin is appointed Superintendent of Indians.
1660 Passaconaway resigns the Sachemship to his son, Wannalancit.
1665 The Indian Ditch is opened around the Wamesit Indian Reservation.
1669 Indian fort built on Fort Hill.
1675 King Philip’s War. Nov. 15, butchery of Wamesit Indians by ruffians from Chelmsford.
1676 Fortifications against hostile Indians are erected at Pawtucket Falls.
1686 The Wamesit and Pawtucket Indians retire to Canada and join the tribe of the St. Francis Indians, selling their lands in Chelmsford and Dracut to the English settlers.
1695 King William’s War. Colonel Joseph Lynde fortifies Lynde’s Hill.
1701 Dracut is incorporated
1726 Wamesit annexed to Chelmsford
1734 Tewksbury is incorporated
1792 Proprietors of Locks and Canals incorporated to construct the Pawtucket Canal. Also the Proprietors of the Middlesex Merrimack River Bridge at Pawtucket Falls.
1796 Pawtucket Canal opens
1801 The first water-powered carding machine in Middlesex County is used by Moses Hale, at East Chelmsford (now in Lowell)
1803 Germans are recruited to work at Gore & Hunnewell Glass Manufactory in Middlesex Village.
Middlesex Canal opens
1807 Pentucket Lodge of Free Masons is instituted.
1813 Phineas Whiting & Josiah Fletcher open a cotton mill near present day Lower Locks.
1816 Bowers’ saw mill and grist mill are erected.
1817 September 2, Francis Cabot Lowell dies.
1818 Gunpowder is manufactured by Moses Hale; satinets by Thomas Hurd; flannel by Winthrop Howe.
1821 Merrimack Manufacturing Company founded in East Chelmsford by Patrick Tracy Jackson, Nathan Appleton, Kirk Boott and others.
Thomas Hurd builds a new mill at Lower Locks, incorporates power looms into his business.
September 11, General Joseph Bradley Varnum dies in Dracut
1822 Hugh Cummiskey’s Irish laborers march to Lowell from Charlestown. Irish work gangs are recruited to dig the first power canals along with Yankee workers.
Revolutionary War hero John Ford dies from injuries sustained during a fight with Irish canal workers.
1823 Merrimack Manufacturing Company recruits Yankee women to work in its textile mills.
1824 St. Anne’s Church is established by Merrimack Religious Society.
The first newspaper, the Journal issued.
June 18, Ezra Worthen of Merrimack Company dies.
1825 Completion of the Merrimack Company’s Machine Shop.
Hamilton Manufacturing Company is incorporated.
Reorganization of Proprietors of Locks & Canals.
Middlesex Mechanics Association incorporated.
1826 Lowell is incorporated as a town March 1, population 2,500
Edward Everett is Representative in Congress. Daily stage coaches run between Lowell and Boston.
1827 Father John Mahoney celebrates first mass in the Merrimack Company’s school house.
1828 Kirk Boott representing the textile corporations, meets with Catholic Bishop Fenwick to donate company land for the construction of a Catholic Church.
Scottish carpet weavers are recruited from Medway, Mass. by the Lowell Manufacturing Company.
Lowell Manufacturing Company is incorporated and names its first Agent, Scottish immigrant Alexander Wright.
Appleton Manufacturing Company is incorporated.
Lowell Bank incorporated; Death of Moses Hale
1829 Lowell Institution for Savings is founded.
Hurd’s Mills fail, are re-incorporated as Middlesex Manufacturing Company.
First Odd Fellows’ Lodge, the Merrimack, is organized.
1830 Lowell population 6,477
Boston & Lowell Railroad is incorporated.
Middlesex, Tremont, and Suffolk Manufacturing Companies are established
Fire Department is established
1831 Lowell High School opens.
St. Patrick’s Church is dedicated.
Battle of the Stone Bridge – open hostility between the Irish and the Yankee workers.
Lawrence Manufacturing Company is incorporated.
Railroad Bank incorporated.
July 5, Paul Moody dies.
1832 Public school controversy: Rev. Theodore Edson vs. Kirk Boott
The Lowell Bleachery is incorporated; District schools abolished; Sept. 15, Judge Livermore dies.
1833 Lowell Irish Benevolent Society is started.
Police Court is established.
June 26, President Jackson visits along with Vice President and future President Martin Van Buren.
September 13, Warren Colburn dies
October 25, Henry Clay’s visit
1834 The “Mill girls” “turn out”; first major strike in Lowell.
Belvidere annexed from Tewksbury
Belvidere Manufacturing Company is formed
Visits of David Crockett, George Thompson, Michel Chevalier, and Daniel Webster
1835 Town of Lowell supports the creation of separate Catholic schools.
Boston & Lowell Railroad is started.
1835 Boott Cotton Mills is incorporated.
1835 Tri-Weekly Courier is published
1835 Almshouse established
1835 Death of Rev. Enoch W. Freeman and Captain Phineas Whiting.
1836 April 1, Lowell is incorporated as a city.
Batting is manufactured at Massic Falls by Perez O. Richmond
Caleb Cushing is Representative in Congress
Death of Elisha Glidden
Second “Mill Girls” strike
Lowell Dispensary founded (early health services)
Lowell population 17,663, among which 2,661 are listed as “aliens” and 44 “colored.”
1836–37 Elisha Bartlett, Mayor
1837 April 11, Kirk Boott dies, after carriage tips on corner Merrimack and Dutton Streets.
Middlesex Manufacturing Company recruits British workers from Gloucestershire.
British immigrant James B. Francis becomes Chief Engineer of the Proprietors of Locks and Canals.
Market House is built
1838–39 Luther Lawrence, Mayor
1839 Lowell Corporation Hospital opens.
Massachusetts Mills incorporated.
April 17, Mayor Luther Lawrence dies by a fall into a wheel pit.
Whitney Mills incorporated
Charles P. & Thomas Talbot manufacture chemicals, etc.
Death of Father Mahoney and Samuel H. Mann
1839–41 Elisha Huntington, Mayor
1840 North and South Commons laid out
Lowell population 20,981
Moses Kimball founds the Lowell Museum
First issue of the Lowell Offering is published.
1840s Ten Hour Movement
Irish workers begin to find employment in the textile mills.
1841 Louis Bergeron family becomes the first recorded French-Canadian family to settle in Lowell.
Lowell Cemetery is established
“Vox Populi”, newspaper, issued
1842 Charles Dickens visit.
1842–43 Nathaniel Wright, Mayor
1843 Hugh Cummiskey, Irish immigrant, is elected to the Common Council.
Establishment of Dr. J. C. Ayer’s laboratory.
April 1, Dr. William Graves dies.
June 19, President Tyler’s visit
The Missionary Association is formed
1844 City paves streets at public expense
Lowell Female Labor Reform Association is formed.
The City Library opens.
February 16, Zadock Rogers dies.
1844–45 Uriah Boyden and James B. Francis develop inward-flow turbine. Turbines quickly replace breastwheels in Lowell’s mills.
Elisha Huntington, Mayor
1845 Proprietors of Locks & Canals is reorganized
Incorporation of Lowell Machine Shop.
Stony Brook Railroad is incorporated
Middlesex North District Medical Society organized.
Daily Courier is published
Pentucket Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons re-organized, eleven years after the surrender of its charter under the pressure of the anti – Masonic movement.
British utopian Robert Owens visits.
Whittier’s “Stranger in Lowell” and Miles’ “Lowell as It Was and as It Is,” are published.
Late 1840s Ben Butler begins his political career; supported by Irish Democrats.
1846 Lowell population 29,127
The Lowell and Lawrence Railroad is incorporated.
Nathan Crosby succeeds Judge Locke in the Police Court
1846–48 Jefferson Bancroft, Mayor
1847 “Mill girls” donate clothing and the City raises $1990.00 for Irish famine relief.
St. Mary’s church dedicated March 7.
June 30, President Polk’s visit.
September 12, Patrick T.  Jackson dies
The Appleton Bank is incorporated
Northern Canal is completed on Thanksgiving Day.
1848 The Salem and Lowell Railroad is incorporated
September 18, Abraham Lincoln’s visit.
Death of John R. Adams
1849 Battle of Suffolk Bridge – fighting between Irish from Cork and Connaught with those from northern Irish counties.
The Lynde Hill Reservoir of Locks And Canals, is constructed in Belvidere
November 19, death of Edmund Lee Breton
1849–50 Josiah B. French, Mayor
1850 Annual production of 50,000 miles of cloth makes Lowell the largest industrial center in the US. Population of 33,000 is second largest in Massachusetts.
Gas is introduced
County Court House is erected
Prescott Bank is incorporated
1850s Arrival of Jews from Germany
1851 Centralville annexed to Lowell
The Daily News is published
April 21, death of Dr. Abner H. Brown
September 16, first fair of the Middlesex Mechanics Association
James H. B. Ayer, Mayor
1852 Nativists attack Irish girls’ school in Lowell
May 6, Kossuth’s visit
June, death of Alexander Wright and Otis H. Morrill
Elisha Huntington, Mayor
First big flood after Great Gate was completed. Gate was dropped to save the city.
1853 St. Patrick’s Church rebuilt.
Belvidere Woolen Company is organized.
Successful strike at Lowell Machine Shop
July 12, Samuel Appleton dies.
Wamesit Bank incorporated
Huntington Hall is built
November 10, Judge Locke dies.
1853–54 Sewall G. Mack, Mayor
1854 Know Nothing Party candidate is elected mayor on an anti-foreigner ticket. Disbands the Jackson Musketeers (Ben Butler’s militia)
Natives of Maine living in Lowell hold their first social reunion.
Merchants Bank incorporated
Death of Rev. U. C. Burnap, Zaccheus Shedd, and P.O. Richmond.
1855 Irish constitute 27.6% of Lowell’s population.
J. Hiss & “Snelling Committee” investigate Sisters of Notre Dame
Middlesex North Agricultural Society incorporated.
Death of Rev. Timothy O’Brien, Dr. Elisha Bartlett, and Abbott Lawrence
Ambrose Lawrence, Mayor
1856 The Jail is built.
The Daily Citizen is published
November 17, Judge Hopkinson dies>
Elisha Huntington, Mayor
1857 Economic depression
January 16, Thomas H. Benton’s visit.
September 10, second fair of Middlesex Mechanics Association
Stephen Mansur, Mayor
1858 November 5, Nathaniel Wright dies.
Elisha Huntington, Mayor
1859 Death of John Adams, Alanson J. Richmond, Jane E. Locke, Samuel W. Browne, and Samuel J. Varney.
James Cook, Mayor
1860 Lowell population 36,827
January 12, Joseph Butterfield dies
March 30, Rhoda M. Wilkins dies by poison
June 19, murder of Elizabeth A. Moore by Bryant Moore
July 14, Nicholas G. Norcross dies
July 26, General Butler is silenced in a Democratic caucus in Huntington Hall on returning from the Charleston Convention.
1860–61 Benjamin C. Sargeant, Mayor
1861–65 Recruitment of Irish and other foreign-born Americans by the Union Army. Cotton mills sell cotton and close for long periods; mills rebuilt and expanded; mill operatives out of work.
1861 Hospice begun to provide health care for the Irish.
April 6, Captain G. V. Fox of Lowell attempts to relieve Fort Sumter.
April 19, collision between the Lowell Militia and the Secessionists in Baltimore, in which Ladd, Whitney, Needham, and Taylor are killed, first Civil War casualties
April 20, Soldier’s Aid Association formed – the first in the United States
July 14, Nathan Appleton dies
September 24, visit of Prince Jerome Napoleon and Princess Clotilde.
1862 April 3, death of Surgeon E. K. Sanborn
May 24, death of Z. B. Caverly
August 9, Captain E. G. Abbott and seven of his company killed in the battle of Cedar Mountain
August 29, Lieutenant J. R. Darracott killed at the second Bull Run
October 5, death of Captain T. A. Crowley
November, death of I. W. Beard and Charles L. Tilden
December 13, Lieutenant Thomas Claffey killed before Petersburg
1862–64 Hocum Hosford, Mayor
1863 Incorporation of the Lowell Horse Railroad
January 12, return of General Butler from New Orleans and reception in Huntington Hall
February 25, Soldier’s Fair
April 2, death of Stephen Mansur
April 30, Captain George Bush killed at Chancellorsville
May 1, Captain Salem S. Marsh killed at Chancellorsville
June 3, Lieutenant Solon A. Perkins killed at Clinton, Louisiana
July 3, Captains John Murkland and David W. Roche killed at Gettysburg
October 6, Judge Advocate A. W. Farr and seventy-seven others captured and put to death by Quantrell’s guerrillas in Kansas
1864 January 8, death of Dr. John C. Dalton
April 14, Lieutenant Charles B. Wilder of the navy killed in the Nansemond River, Virginia.
May 6, Major H. L. Abbott killed at the battle of the Wilderness.
May 31, Captain L. C. Mumford killed at Cold Harbor.
June 7, death of J. H. B. Ayer
July 8, death of John Avery
October 20, death of John P. Robinson
First National Bank incorporated.
1865 Samuel P. Marin is employed by the textile companies to recruit French-Canadians.
January 28, final return of General Butler from duty in the army. He “rises to explain” in Huntington Hall.
June 17, dedication of the monument to Ladd and Whitney.
June 22, death of Joshua Mather
December 11, death of Dr. Elisha Huntington.
1865–66 Josiah G. Peabody, Mayor
1866 Music Hall opened
February 13, death of Dr. James Thompson
July 2, death of Horace Howard
1867 St. John’s Hospital is founded, in part as a response to the health needs of the immigrant population.
Celina Lavallee, composer of Canadian national anthem, married in Lowell.
July 4, Statue of Victory erected
Death of Samuel A. Brown, John Aiken, Dr. Benjamin Skelton, Ransom Reed, Dr. J. M. Allen, Joshua Swan, David Hyde, Abner W. Buttrick, Caleb Crosby, S. S. Seavey and Charles A. Babcock.
Young Men’s Christian Association organized.
Old Ladie’s Home established
September 10, third fair of the Middlesex Mechanics Association
October 8, General Sheridan’s visit.
1867–68 George F. Richardson, Mayor
1868 Scottish immigrant Alexander Cumnock becomes Agent of the Boott Mills
Old Residents’ Historical Association is formed, signaling a growing interest in local history.
Lucien Lager and Father Andre Marie Garin of Quebec arrive in Lowell, April 18
St. Joseph’s Church is founded to serve the growing French-Canadian community.
First Lowell celebration of St. Jean-Baptiste Day; musical soiree in cellar of St. Joseph’s.
B. F. Butler Post, No. 42, G. A. R. established
Cowley’s History of Lowell published
Memorial Day first observed in Lowell
December 4, General Ulysses S. Grant’s visit
Death of Dr. Samuel L. Dana, Samuel Burbank, Adam Putnamand Silas Tyler, Jr.
1869 St. John the Baptist Benevolent Society of Lowell (French Organization giving death benefits to members of family.)
Lowell chapter of the Ancient Order of Hibernians is founded.
Lowell Hosiery Company incorporated
Death of John Nesmith, John Wright, Dr. George A Whitmore, James G. Carney, Joseph Tapley, J. R. V. Coburn, and John Sullivan (aged 102)
1869–70 Jonathan P. Folsom, Mayor
1870 Lowell’s first French language play, “Le Proscrit,” is performed at Huntington Hall.
United States Cartridge Company opens
Death of Thomas Nesmith, Rev. Amos  Blanchard, Linus Child, B. C. Sargent, Dr. J. P. Jewett, John F. Rogers, Jesse Fox, Charles F. Bassett, H. G. F. Corliss, Charlotte Butler and Ellen Tague (aged 102)
1871 Hugh Commiskey dies, at his home on Adams Street, at age of 82, December 12.
Small pox epidemic, causing 178 deaths and 580 cases
Central Savings Bank organized
Fire Alarm Telegraph established
Framingham Railroad opened for travel
Death of Sidney Spaulding
Dec. 9, Grand Duke Alexis’ visit
Edward F. Sherman, Mayor
1871–77 Father Garin supervises construction of Immaculate Conception Church.
1872 People’s Club organized
Japanese Embassy’s visit
Pawtucket Bridge finished
Water Works established
Death of William North, E. F. Sherman, George Brownell, and Oliver M.Whipple.
Josiah G. Peabody, Mayor
1873 Morning Times issued, morning edition
Young Women’s Home, later the Ayer Home for Young Women and Children established
Death of Fisher A. Hildreth and Dr. John W. Graves.
1873–75 Francis Jewett, Mayor
1874 Samuel P. Marin is elected to the City Council, the first French-Canadian to reach public office.
Fiftieth anniversary of organization of St. Anne’s celebrated
Fire at Wamesit Mills, loss $40,000.
G. A. R. Hall dedicated
Pawtucketville and Middlesex Village annexed to Lowell
Kitson Machine Company incorporated
Lowell and Andover Railroad opened for travel
Death of Rev. John O’Brien and Homer Bartlett
1875 Strike by male mule spinners is unsuccessful when they refuse to make alliance with immigrant and women workers.
French-Canadian immigrant Joseph L. Chalifoux opens his first clothing store. His family would later open the Chalifoux Block, then Lowell’s largest department store.
Samuel P. Marin builds the first tenement block in what will become Little Canada.
Knights of Pythias dedicate new hall.
King Kalakaua’s visit
Death of Tappan Wentworth
1876 First Portuguese boardinghouse in Lowell.
Fiftieth anniversary of First Congregational Church
Fiftieth anniversary of First Baptist Church
Semi-centennial celebration of Lowell as a town.
June 8, Emperor Dom Pedro’s visit.
Reform Club formed
Death of Albert Wheeler and Josiah B. French
1876–77 Charles A. Stott, Mayor
1877 The French Congregational Church is founded.
Fiftieth anniversary of Universalist Church celebrated
Shaw Stocking Company formed.
Death of Jonathan Tyler, Artemas L. Brooks and Drs. Harlan Pillsbury, David Wells, and D. P. Gage.
J. C. Ayer Company incorporated.
1877–79 Benjamin Butler Representative in Congress
1878 Lowell Sun founded; originally the voice of the Irish community.
Lowell Art Association formed, primarily by Yankees
First annual regatta of Vesper Boat Club held.
Electric light in Merrimack Mills.
Lowell District Telephone Company formed.
Cowley’s History of the County of Middlesex published in the Middlesex County Manual.
July 3, James C. Ayer died.
1878–79 John A. G. Richardson, Mayor
1879 Morning Mail issued
Unitarian Church celebrates fiftieth anniversary
Death of Samuel Batchelder
Dr. Moses Greeley Parker invents telephone numbers in Lowell.
United States Cord Company established
1880s United Cartridge Company recruits Swedish workers.
Arrival of the first Greek and Polish immigrants in Lowell.
1880 Lowell population 59,485; 39% are foreign born.
1880 Open hostility to French-Canadians by several ethnic and labor groups.
O’Donnell and Gilbride, a clothing store, opened by Irish immigrants.
Charles Stuart Parnell’s visit
Seventy-first meeting of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions held in Lowell
Chase and Faulkner’s Mills burned.
1880-81 Frederic T. Greenhalge, Mayor
1881 St. Jean Baptiste procession is organized in response to anti-French-Canadian propaganda.
J. H. Guillet founds L’Abeille, the first Franco-American daily newspaper in the United States
Lowell, with Guillet, open a night school for French at Common Street school, more than 400 enroll.
Formation of the Free Sons of Israel
Electric Light Company formed.
Death of John A. Lowell and Charles Stott
Free text-books introduced in schools
City Council voted to introduce high service water system
Associated Charities organized
Yellow Tuesday, September 6
Citizens vote to build Aiken Street Bridge
Death of Hocum Hosford
American Bolt Company incorporated
1882 John J. Donovan is elected the first Irish Mayor of Lowell.
Death of Theodore H. Sweetser, Josiah Gates and Rev. E. B. Foster
Central Bridge burned
Citizen Newspaper Company incorporated
George Runels, Mayor
1883 St. Joseph’s School opens, the first Franco-American school in the diocese.
Erie Telephone Company formed in Lowell
Death of Rev. Theodore Edson, Drs. Daniel Holt and Walter Burnham
Fiftieth anniversary of the opening of Edson Grammar School celebrated
City Council voted to make City Library free, and to open a free reading room
Aiken Street and Central bridges finished
The New England Telephone and Telegraph Company organized
Fiftieth anniversary of Paige Street Free Baptist Church celebrated
November 18, standard time went into effect
1883-84 John J. Donovan, Mayor
1884 Death of Daniel Ayer
Colwell Motor fraud
Death of Charles P. Talbot, Moses Whittier, Charles Morrill, J. S. Pollard, Horace J. Adams, and John A. Knowles
Pickering Knitting Company established
1885 Naturalization Club is founded to serve French-Canadian immigrants.
Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church is founded.
Lowell Day Nursery starts.
Death of Judge Crosby, Dr. John O. Green and Edward Tucke
Taylor Street Bridge finished
Edward J. Noyes, Mayor
1886 First issue of L’Etoile, a French-Canadian newspaper.
Statue of Liberty is dedicated; stairs built by Lowell Company.
April 1, semi – centennial of the incorporation of Lowell as a city
Death of Charles Hovey and William C. Gray
Lowell Co-operative Association organized
1886-87 James C. Abbott, Mayor
1887 Founding of St. Jean Baptiste Church (French-Canadian Roman Catholic).
L’Union St. Joseph builds headquarters at 266 Dutton Street. (First non-tenement, non-parish French structure in the city) at cost of $20,000.00
Whittier Cotton Mills incorporated
Death of Rev. Owen Street, Alvan Clark (telescope lens maker), and William A. Burke (of Lowell Machine Shop)
Pilling Shoe Company established
Middlesex Safe Deposit and Trust Company incorporated
Lowell and Dracut Street Railway Company chartered
1888 J. H. Guillet, Lowell’s first Franco-American lawyer, admitted to bar.
Criterion Knitting Company incorporated
Death of Dr. Joel Spaulding
1888-90 Charles D. Palmer, Mayor
1889 Yorick Club is founded by Yankee businessmen.
New Opera House opened.
July 17, Horse Railroad Stable burned with 117 horses and 31 cars
August 15, President Benjamin Harrison visits
Death of Rev. S. W. Hanks, A. B. French, and Dr. Nathan Allen
Thorndike Manufacturing Company organized.
1890 Lowell Board of Trade started
April 14, celebration by the Port Royal Society of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the restoration of the Federal Flag over Fort Sumter
Death of Frank F. Battles
Corner stones of new City Hall and Memorial Hall laid
Death of Jefferson Bancroft
Erection of Armory on Westford Street
Death of William M. Hoar and Jacob Nichols
The Dracut strike
Death of Luther E. Shepard, Daniel S. Richardson, Amos B. French, A. B. Wright, Joseph L. Sargent, and S. T. Lancaster
Lowell Trust Company organized
Public Market and Packing Company incorporated
1890s First Russian Jews arrive in Lowell.
1890s Typhoid epidemics
1891 Greeks begin working in the textile mills.
Massachusetts Mohair Plush Company incorporated
June 2, death of Judge J. G. Abbott
Erection of Westminster Presbyterian Church
Erection of St. Peter’s Church commenced
Grand reception to the three distinguished generals of the Civil War-Banks, Sickles, and Butler
Death of Leonard Brown, Rev. Horatio Wood, Jared P. Maxfield, and John F. Howe
Cornerstone of Odd Fellows Building laid
Post Office, corner Appleton & Gorham, commenced
1891-92 George W. Fifield, Mayor
1892 YWCA is founded to help promote American values
Frank Notini (Italian) starts Cigar and Tobacco Shop on Middlesex Street
Swedish Methodist Church is established
Death of James B. Francis, September 18
Death of Dr. Robert Wood
Erection of Highland Club House
Death of Amos A. Blanchard and Henry J. Noyes
Death of John Stott, Francis Carl, and William S. Bennett
1893 Israel Brotherhood Society (5¢ Club) is organized to provide medical care and death benefits for its members. Also built Jewish cemetery in Pelham, NH when denied a permit for a cemetery in Lowell.
French-Canadian High School for boys started
Lowell General Hospital started
Lowell City Hall and Memorial Hall built.
Start of Electric Trolley System in Lowell
McIntire Street Synagogue organized (Khilor Jacobe)
College St. Joseph, elementary school for boys, is started.
Jan. 12, death of General B. F. Butler, death of Joseph King Flint
Consumers’ Brewing Company incorporated
Death of Jonathan P. Folsom, William D. Butler, John H. Coggeshall, William H. Sherman
Moody School dedicated
Death of William Hart
Associate Building completed
Death of Charles R. Nichols
Court Butler instituted
Lowell General Hospital completed
Death of David Hale
1893-94 John J. Pickman, Mayor
1894 Various Yankee social organizations are organized: Daughters of American Revolution (DAR) chapter, Middlesex  Women’s Club, Vesper Country Club.
First Greek coffeehouses begin appearing
Death of Drs. Oliver A. Willard, George T. Grierson and J. A. Masta. Death of Abel E. Conant, Chief of police Howard, George S. Cushing, George W. Howe
Northern Depot completed
Death of David M. Collins, Dr. G. J. Bradt, Dr. J. B. Hayes, and William H. Mead.
American Missionary Association convened in Lowell October 24
Death of Samuel M. Chase
Merrimack Croquet Company, Courier-Citizen Company and Fifield Tool Company incorporated
1895 First Greek Orthodox service is held at Associate Hall
Washington-Acropolis Society started (Greek)
Portuguese Benefit Society is founded
L’Union Franco-Americaine started
Courier-Citizen Corporation is formed.
Vox Populi discontinued
Death of P. J. Hoar, John W. Read, Rev. Andre M. Garin, E. B. Quinn, Hon. Joshua N. Marshall, John A. Sheppard, Frederick A. Holden, George W. Patterson, Atis Osgood, and Lucius W. Huntington
California Knights Templar visit Lowell
Death of Cleveland J. Cheney, Oliver A. Richardson, Charles C. Coburn, and Aaron Brown
Finance Commission appointed
1895-97 William F. Courtney, Mayor
1896 Lawrence Manufacturing Company switches from cloth production to cotton.
Completion of St. Jean Baptiste Church at cost of $203,000.00
Merrimack Woolen Mills Company incorporated
Horse deal scandal
Death of Solomon Danforth, Walter E. Owen, John W. Duxbury, Hapgood Wright, Seth Pooler, Moses G. Howe, Francis Jewett, and William Merchant Richardson
March 5, death of Governor Greenhalge, of Lowell, death of A. P. Bonney and Stephen Sargent
New Lawrence Street Railroad Bridge completed
Death of Edward K. Perley
Grace Universalist Church dedicated
January 3, Rev. William H. O’Connell, a native of Lowell, left Boston for Rome, Italy, to assume the Presidency of the American College.
Thirtieth Encampment of Massachusetts GAR held in Lowell February 12.
James Duckworth, Treasurer of the Lowell Hosiery Company, died March 10, aged 56 years
Governor Greenhalge buried March 11, 1896
March 13, Greenhalge Day in the public schools
February 28, presentation of marble bust of Governor Frederic T. Greenhalge to the State by Lowell citizens
March 2, Merrimack River overflows its banks.
1897 The Pawtucketville Social Club provides naturalization services to French-Canadians
Congregation of Jacob is founded
State Normal School completed
Jan. 4, an amendment to the City Charter, the work of the Finance Commission of 1895, took effect, which transferred the power to appoint and remove city officers from the City Council to the Mayor, who exercised it one day, when the law was changed.
January, Lowell Textile School opened
March 9, Edward R. Donovan, J. C. Donovan, and B. D. O’Connell were held in the Police Court on charge of bribery
April 5, the New England Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church convened in Lowell
Moody Street Bridge and new County Court House finished.
1898 Harvard Brewery started by Germans
CCA Club de Citoyens Americains founded – local naturalization club on Market Street
Scottish immigrant Alexander Cumnock becomes the Treasurer of the Appleton Corporation.
James W. Bennett, Mayor
1899 O’Sullivan Rubber Company started (Irish inventors of rubber boot heels.)
Apostolos A. Johnson a Greek immigrant opens a drug store on Market Street
Sons of Montefiore Synagogue organized on Howard Street
Lowell Manufacturing Company sells out to Bigelow Carpet Company.
1899-1900 Jeremiah Crowley, Mayor
1900 Charles H. Allen of Lowell becomes first civil governor of Puerto Rico.
Lowell population 94,969; 43% are foreign born
The Yiddish – speaking Lowell Workmen’s Circle is formed exhibiting strong socialist sympathies
1900-05 Tuberculosis epidemic especially in Greek community
1901 St. Casimir’s Church is started to serve the Polish community.
State requires mill workers to speak English
1901-02 Charles A. R. Dimon, Mayor
1902 Anshe Sfard Synagogue (“Russian Shul”) organized by Russian Jews
Ohabe Shalom Shul (“Litrac Shul”) organized by Lithuanian Jews at 63 Howard Street.
Old Resident’s Historical Association becomes the Lowell Historical Society
William E. Badger, Mayor
1903 Anticipating a strike, all Lowell textile mills lock out workers.
Ladies Hebrew Helping Hand Society
Typhoid epidemic
1903-04 Charles E. Howe, Mayor
1904 Holy Trinity Polish Roman Catholic Church is founded
St. Louis de France parish is founded in Centralville.
1905 Centralville Social Club is organized by French-Canadians
Boott Mills is reorganized
Lowell Chapter of the Polish Falcons is formed
1905-06 James B. Casey, Mayor
1906 Construction of the Greek Holy Trinity Church begins
1907 Bigelow Carpet Company refuses to hire Greeks and claims their strike activity against the company is the primary reason.
St. Stanislaus School (Polish)
Lowell Women’s Falcons (Polish)
1907-08 Frederick W. Farnham, Mayor
1908 St. Anthony’s Church opens to serve the Portuguese community.
Greek Holy Trinity Church opens
Notre Dame de Lourdes parish and grammar school started in Highlands
Franco-American orphanage started
1909 St. Joseph’s Church (Lithuanian); formerly the Polish St. Casimir’s Church
George H. Brown, Mayor
1910 Dom Polski (Polish National Home) Club is formed
ca. 1910 Armenian Church opens
ca. 1910 Notre Dame de Lourdes Church (French) opens.
1910 Harry Pitts a British immigrant and former textile worker opens the Pitts Auto Supply Store the largest business of its kind north of Boston; also supported baseball teams locally.
Ideal Credit Union (Jewish) started; eventually merged with Highland & Lowell Credit Unions to form the Highland Credit Union in 1975
1910-11 John F. Meehan, Mayor
1911 Jeanne D’Arc Credit Union started
King Dom Carlos of Portugal assassinated; his cousin, Bishop Henry da Silva, decides to stay in US at Lowell’s St. Anthony’s
Society of Thaddeus Kosciuszko started
New St. Casimir’s Church
1912 A. A. Johnson & Co., a cigarette factory, is opened by Greek immigrants
Italians found St. Anthony’s Society, a mutual aid society
April 29, Former President Theodore Roosevelt and President Taft visit
Lowell Machine Shop is incorporated into the Saco-Lowell Shops.
Lowell’s most celebrated union victory; Greeks play pivotal role
1912-13 James E. O’Donnell, Mayor
1912-31 State Representative Henry Achin serves
1913 French-Canadian businessmen and professionals found the Lafayette Club.
1913-25 John Jacob Rogers Representative in Congress
1914-15 Dennis J. Murphy, Mayor
ca. 1915 “Battle of the Knives” – fight between Greeks and Irish
1916 Bigelow Carpet Company leaves Lowell
1916-17 James E. O’Donnell, Mayor
1918 International Institute is founded to assist with naturalization and promote American values.
Middlesex Company ceases production
1918-19 Flu epidemic
1918-21 Perry D. Thompson, Mayor
1919 Syrian-Lebanese community opens St. George’s Antiochian Orthodox Church
1920 Lowell population 112,759; 34% are foreign born
Polish American Men’s Citizens Club of Lowell
Red Scare; arrests by local and federal agents in Lowell
Eamon de Valera visits Lowell
ca. 1920 Church of All Nations started in Acre.
1922 Jack Kerouac is born
George H. Brown, Mayor
September, Lowell Memorial Auditorium is dedicated by Vice President and future President Calvin Coolidge.
1922-23 Founding of the American Hellenic Educational Protective Association (AHEPA) in Atlanta, and the Greek American Progressive Association (GAPA) in Pittsburgh.
1923 Transfiguration Church is founded as a result of a split in the Greek community.
Ste Jeanne D’Arc Church started in Pawtucketville
Holy Ghost Society for Portuguese education and recreation started; 2 1/2 acres of land on Village Street.
Laganas Shoe Manufacturing Company opens on Market Street (Greek)
1923-26 John J. Donovan, Mayor
1925 Polish American Women’s Political Club
1925-60 Edith Nourse Rogers takes over as Representative after her husband dies
1926 Suffolk Mills is sold
Lawrence Manufacturing Company is sold
Hamilton Manufacturing Company ceases production
1927 Temple Beth-El is founded
Temple Beth-El (Conservative Jews) buys Highlands Club and establishes congregation in upper Highlands; members move to new neighborhood.
Appleton Manufacturing Company moves South
Massachusetts Mills is sold; production ceases
Tremont Mills shuts down
1927-28 Thomas J. Corbett, Mayor
1928 Occupation of Greek Holy Trinity Church by dissidents is followed by a fight on the church steps and the eventual founding of St. George’s Church.
Saco-Lowell Shops ends production in Lowell
1929-31 Thomas H. Braden, Mayor
1930 Lowell population 100234; 26% foreign born
Start of St. Joseph’s Hospital (French; formerly the Lowell Corporation Hospital)
Greek immigration to US limited to 307 per year
1931 Ste. Marie’s Parish, in South Lowell started
Lowell chapter of AHEPA is formed
Shoe industry is the largest employer in Lowell
1932-33 Charles H. Slowey, Mayor
1933 Repeal of Prohibition, Harvard Brewery resumes beer making.
Start of Pulaski Club
Strike among shoe workers; Laganas Shoe Company
1934-35 James J. Bruin, Mayor
1935 The end of electric street cars in Lowell
French-Canadian Dewey Archambault is elected mayor.
Violence erupts between Greek union and non-union shoe workers at Laganas
1936-39 Dewey G. Archambault, Mayor
Late 1930’s Shoe industry is in decline
1938 40% of population is on relief
Successful Textile Union election occurs at Merrimack Manufacturing Company.
1939 “Slum clearance” policies result in the demolition of numerous Greek-owned properties in the Acre. Creation of North Common Village public housing project.
1939-45 World War II – cultural watershed for GI’s and families, plus new better paying jobs in electronics and weapons factories.
1940 Lowell population 101,389
1940-43 George T. Ashe, Mayor
1941 Boott and Merrimack Mill strikes led by Louis Vergados
1943 Joseph J. Sweeney, Acting Mayor
1944-45 Woodbury F. Howard, Mayor
1944-52 John J. Flannery, City Manager
1945 Dr. Paul C. Panagiotakos, first Greek elected to School Committee
late 1940s New wave of Greek immigration begins as a result of war displacements.
1946 Golden Gloves in Lowell begin
Prince Macaroni begins operations in Lowell
1946-47 Leo A. Roy, Mayor
1948 Rocky Marciano wins Golden Gloves title in Lowell
Body of Thomas “Tracy” Megdanis returned to Lowell; first dead Greek-American war veteran
1948-49 George A. Ayotte, Mayor
1949 Temple Emmanuel (first Reformed Temple) started
1950 Lowell population 97,249; 20% foreign born
Kerouac’s Town and the City is published.
Wannalancit Textile Company moves into former Suffolk Mills
William G. Geary, Mayor
1951-1952 George C. Eliades, Mayor Lowell’s first Greek mayor.
October 16, President Harry Truman has whistle stop speech at The Depot.
October 21, Dwight Eisenhower has whistle stop speech at The Depot.
1952-53 Henry Beaudry, Mayor
1952-53 Ulysses J. Lupien, City Manager
1953 Dedication of monument honoring Greek-American war dead (Dummer & Broadway Streets)
1953-61 Frank Barrett, City Manager
1954-55 John Janas, Mayor – Lowell’s first Polish mayor
1954 September 28, V.P. and future President Richard Nixon receives honorary degree at Lowell Technical Institute.
1956 Hispanic families with ties to Ft. Devens locate in Lowell
Boott Mills close
September 27, Congressman and future President John F. Kennedy receives honorary degree at Lowell Technical Institute.
1956-59 Samuel S. Pollard, Mayor
1957 Joan Fabrics purchases its first factory in Lowell
1958 Merrimack Co. shuts down
1960 Lowell population 92,107
Demolition of Merrimack Mills
1960s Wannalancit Textile Co. recruits Columbian workers
1960-61 Raymond J. Lord, Mayor
1961-73 F. Bradford Morse Representative in Congress
1962 Demolition of Little Canada begins
1962-63 Joseph M. Downes, Mayor
1962-63 Cornelius Desmond, Jr., City Manager
1963-66 P. Harold Ready, City Manager
1964-65 Ellen A. Sampson first woman Mayor
late 1960s Puerto Rican workers at Joan Fabric’s factories in New Jersey transfer to Lowell.
1966-67 Edward J. Early, Jr., Mayor
1966-70 Charles A. Gallager, City Manager
1968-69 Robert C. Maguire, Mayor
1969 Jack Kerouac dies
Wannalancit Textile Company begins recruiting Colombian workers
Beginning of “Model Cities” program
1970 Lowell population 94,280; 9% foreign born
1970-71 Richard P. Howe, Mayor
1970-74 James L. Sullivan, City Manager
1970s Lowell begins a period of economic revival as many high-tech companies open plants.
1972 Michael Dukakis who had family connections to Lowell, is elected Governor of Massachusetts.
1972-73 Ellen A. Sampson, Mayor
1973-75 Paul W. Cronin Representative in Congress
1974 Founding of UNITAS, serving the Hispanic community
Starting of Lowell Heritage State Park
1974-75 Armand W. Lemay, Mayor
1974-75 Paul J. Sheehy, City Manager
1975 Beginning of Vietnamese immigration to Lowell
Lowell State and Lowell Tech merge to form University of Lowell.
Lowell population 91,177
12% unemployment in Lowell
1975-79 Paul Tsongas Representative in Congress
1976 Lowell Museum’s “Spindle City” exhibit opens
1976-77 Leo J. Farley, Mayor
1978 Paul Tsongas, former Lowell City Councilor, is elected to the U. S. Senate
Lowell National Historical Park is established.
1978-79 Ray Rourke, Mayor
1979 Beginning of Cambodian and Laotian immigration to Lowell
Benjamin Butler’s mansion at 333 Andover street is demolished.
Wang Laboratories names Lowell its international headquarters
1980-81 Robert Maguire, Mayor
1980 Lowell population 92,418; 9% foreign born
First Puerto Rican Festival committee is formed
“El Show Sin Nombre” – first Hispanic radio show in Lowell, based at Unitas
1981 Closing of Wannalancit Company.
1982-83 Brendan Fleming, Mayor
1982 Coalition for a Better Acre is formed
Lowell National Historical Park Visitor Center opens
1983 Greek immigrant monument at Cardinal O’Connell Parkway
1984-85 Brian Martin, Mayor
1985 Lowell’s first Buddhist temple is founded
Greek cultural center at Dummer & Broadway Streets
Grace Shoe Company, last major shoe factory, closes
1986-87 Robert Kennedy, Mayor
1986 Closing of St. Peter’s Church
4.1% unemployment in Lowell
Hellenic Cultural Center opens
1987 Tsongas Industrial History Center created by cooperative agreement between University of Lowell and Lowell National Historical Park.
Major fire in the old Lawrence Manufacturing Company Mill
1988-89 Richard Howe, Mayor
1989 Another big fire in Lawrence Manufacturing Company buildings.
Mogan Cultural Center opens
1990-91 Richard Howe, Mayor
1990 Lowell Folk Festival begins. Occurs every last full weekend in July.
Middlesex Community College (MCC) establishes permanent Lowell campus in former Wang training center in Kearney Square.
1991 University of Lowell becomes University of Massachusetts Lowell
1992-93 Tarsy Poulios, Mayor
1992 Boott Cotton Mills Museum opens
Wang files for bankruptcy protection.
1994-95 Richard Howe, Mayor
Iconic Wang towers sold at auction for $525,000. Now called Cross Point Towers
1996-97 Edward “Bud” Caulfield, Mayor
1996 Tearing down of St. Peter’s Church
Construction of Paul E. Tsongas Hockey Arena starts
Lowell Spinners minor league baseball team arrives
1997 American Textile History Museum opens in Lowell
Construction of Edward Lelacheur Baseball Stadium starts
Paul Tsongas dies
1998-99 Eileen Donoghue, Mayor
1998 Lowell Lock Monsters Minor League Hockey Team begins play. Later becomes Lowell Devils.
President William Clinton visits Lowell for a Marty Meehan fundraiser.
2000-01 Eileen Donoghue, Mayor
2000 Lowell population 105,167; 22% foreign born.
2001 Former President George W. Bush visits Lowell for MCC Celebrity Forum.
2002-03 Rita Mercier, Mayor
2004-05 Armand Mercier, Mayor
2006-07 William F. Martin, Mayor
2007 Former Congressman, Marty Meehan becomes Chancellor of UMass Lowell.
2008-09 Edward “Bud” Caulfield, Mayor.
2008 The movie Invention of Lying starring Ricky Gervais is filmed in Lowell
2009 The movie The Fighter portraying Lowell native Micky Ward is filmed in Lowell starring Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale.
UMass Lowell purchases former Doubletree (Hilton) Hotel. Now called UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center.
Ed McMahon, Lowell native and Johnny Carson’s sidekick dies in Los Angeles, CA.
2010-2011 James L. Milinazzo, Mayor
2010 Lowell population 106,519
UMass Lowell acquires Tsongas Arena from City of Lowell; renames Tsongas Center.
2011 UMass Lowell purchases former St. Joseph’s Hospital. Largely demolishes and rebuilds as University Crossing.
2012 UMass Lowell Athletics becomes Division 1.
2012-2013 Patrick O. Murphy, Mayor – at age 29, youngest Mayor in Lowell’s history.
2013 Pow Wow Oak on Clark Road in Belvidere, dated to the 1700s, is removed due to safety concerns.
Over 90% of downtown Lowell’s 5.2 million square feet of mill space rehabilitated.
Richard P. Howe bridge completed connecting Merrimack Street with University Avenue. Replaces Textile Memorial Bridge slated for demolition.