Dukes County, Massachusetts is located on the southeastern tip of the state, and is composed of seven towns: Chilmark, Edgartown, Gosnold, Oak Bluffs, Tisbury, West Tisbury and Aquinnah. The county covers a total area of 108 square miles (279 sq km), with a population of about 16,535 people as of 2020.
The county is bordered by Nantucket Sound to the east and Vineyard Sound to the south. The Elizabeth Islands are located off Dukes County’s southwestern coast. Martha’s Vineyard is located just off the coast from Dukes County and is accessible via ferry from Woods Hole on the mainland.
The geography of Dukes County includes a variety of landscapes ranging from beaches to rolling hills to woodlands. The majority of the region consists of low-lying land with gentle slopes that reach an elevation no higher than 200 feet (60 m). The terrain gradually rises towards the west where it peaks at an elevation of approximately 300 feet (90 m).
The climate in Dukes County is typical for New England with hot summers and cold winters. Precipitation averages around 45 inches (114 cm) per year throughout the county with snowfall between December and March.
Overall Dukes County has much to offer visitors with its beautiful beaches, rolling hills and woodlands providing plenty to explore while vacationing in this picturesque region. From outdoor activities such as fishing or kayaking in the summer months to winter sports such as skiing or snowshoeing during colder weather; there’s something for everyone in Dukes County.
Country Seat and Other Main Cities of Dukes County, Massachusetts
Dukes County, Massachusetts is composed of seven towns, with Edgartown serving as the county seat. Located on the eastern side of Martha’s Vineyard, Edgartown is known for its charming historic district and a picturesque harbor. The town is home to a variety of attractions, from the Edgartown Lighthouse and Whaling Church to the Martha’s Vineyard Museum and the Old Whaling Gaol.
According to countryaah.com, other main cities in Dukes County include Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven. Oak Bluffs is one of the most popular towns on Martha’s Vineyard and known for its colorful gingerbread cottages, vibrant nightlife scene, and stunning beaches like Joseph Sylvia State Beach. Vineyard Haven is located on the island’s inner harbor and has a laid-back atmosphere with plenty of shops, restaurants, galleries, and other attractions worth exploring.
The town of Aquinnah lies along the western edge of Martha’s Vineyard along with Gay Head Cliffs which offer spectacular views over Nantucket Sound. Chilmark is an affluent town located near Menemsha Pond where visitors can enjoy sailing or swimming in summer months. West Tisbury has a rural feel with plenty of open space while Gosnold has some lovely beaches such as Cuttyhunk Island Beach which offers great views over Buzzards Bay.
Overall Dukes County offers something for everyone from quaint coastal towns to more vibrant cities with plenty to explore throughout this picturesque region in Massachusetts.
History of Dukes County, Massachusetts
Dukes County, Massachusetts has a long and rich history that dates back to the early 1600s when it was first settled by English colonists. The region was originally part of the Plymouth Colony and later became its own county in 1695. The county was named after Duke of York who had been granted the area by King Charles II in 1664.
Throughout its history, Dukes County has been an important port for trade and fishing as well as a major agricultural center. The island of Martha’s Vineyard has long been home to many Native American tribes such as the Wampanoag people who were living on the island when Europeans first arrived.
In the 19th century, Dukes County experienced a period of rapid growth and development with new industries such as whaling and shipbuilding becoming increasingly important. It also became an important stop on the Underground Railroad during this time as well as a popular summer destination for wealthy vacationers from Boston and New York City.
The 20th century saw Dukes County continue to grow with new industries such as tourism taking off in a big way due to its beautiful beaches, rolling hills, and woodlands providing plenty to explore while vacationing in this picturesque region. Today Dukes County is home to seven towns including Edgartown which serves as the county seat, Oak Bluffs, Vineyard Haven, Aquinnah, Chilmark West Tisbury, and Gosnold.
Economy of Dukes County, Massachusetts
Dukes County, Massachusetts has a diverse economy that is largely driven by tourism, fishing, and agriculture. The region has long been an important port for trade and fishing with many residents relying on the sea as their primary source of income. In addition to this, the county is home to a large number of farms where crops such as corn, wheat, and hay are grown.
Tourism is also a major industry in Dukes County with its beautiful beaches and rolling hills providing plenty to explore while vacationing in this picturesque region. The island of Martha’s Vineyard has long been a popular destination for wealthy vacationers from Boston and New York City while Edgartown serves as the county seat for all seven towns including Oak Bluffs, Vineyard Haven, Aquinnah, Chilmark West Tisbury, and Gosnold.
The county also contains several smaller industries such as boatbuilding which provides employment for many local residents. In addition to this, there are several larger employers in the region such as Stop & Shop Supermarkets which operates a distribution center in Edgartown and the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital which employs over 700 people from across the county.
Overall Dukes County offers something for everyone with its diverse economy providing plenty of opportunities for those looking to work or start their own business in this picturesque region of Massachusetts.