Massachusetts, one of the New England states of the United States. It is bounded by Vermont, New Hampshire, the Atlantic Ocean, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New York.

Among states Massachusetts ranks 44th in size with an area of 10,555 square miles (27,337 km 2). There are 192 miles (309 km) of general coastline. Counting all islands, tidal bays, and inlets, the shoreline measures 1,519 miles (2,445 km).

Massachusetts lies almost entirely in the New England section of the Appalachian Highlands. It is an old, eroded region where glaciers in recent geologic time have formed or molded many of its physical features. Advancing ice sheets smoothed hills and mountains and in places leveled the land. Receding, they dammed rivers, created lakes and marshes, and left widespread debris in such forms as moraines, drumlins, and eskers.

The state birdThe state bird of Massachusetts is the black-capped chickadee.
Massachusetts in brief
General information
Statehood: Feb. 6, 1788, the sixth state.
State abbreviations: Mass. (traditional); MA (postal).
State capital: Boston, the capital of Massachusetts since 1630.
State motto: Ense Petit Placidam sub Libertate Quietem (By the Sword We Seek Peace, But Peace Only Under Liberty).
Popular name: The Bay State.
State song: "All Hail to Massachusetts" by Arthur J. Marsh.
Symbols of Massachusetts
State bird: Black-capped chickadee.
State flower: Mayflower.
State tree: American elm.
State flag and seal: Massachusetts' state flag, adopted in 1971, bears a shield with a figure of an Indian on a white background. The Indian has been a symbol of Massachusetts since 1629. The star represents Massachusetts as one of the original 13 colonies. A crest above the shield, an arm wielding a sword, coincides with the motto. The state seal, adopted in 1885, bears the same symbols as the flag.
Land and climate
Area: 8,262 mi2 (21,398 km2), including 424 mi2 (1,098 km2) of inland water but excluding 979 mi2 (2,536 km2) of Atlantic coastal water.
Elevation: Highest--Mount Greylock, 3,491 ft (1,064 m) above sea level. Lowest--sea level along the Atlantic Ocean.
Coastline: 192 mi (309 km).
Record high temperature: 107 degrees F (42 degrees C) at New Bedford and Chester on Aug. 2, 1975.
Record low temperature: –35 degrees F (–37 degrees C) at Chester on Jan. 1, 1981.
Average July temperature: 71 degrees F (22 degrees C).
Average January temperature: 25 degrees F (–4 degrees C).
Average yearly precipitation: 45 in (114 cm).
Population: 6,349,097.
Rank among the states: 13th.
Density: 768 persons per mi2 (297 per km2), U.S. average 78 per mi2 (30 per km2).
Distribution: 91 percent urban, 9 percent rural.
Largest cities in Massachusetts: Boston (589,141); Worcester (172,648); Springfield (152,082); Lowell (105,167); Cambridge (101,355); Brockton (94,304).
Chief products
Agriculture: cranberries, greenhouse and nursery products, milk, sweet corn.
Fishing industry: cod, flounder, lobsters, scallops.
Manufacturing: chemicals, computer and electronic equipment, fabricated metal products, machinery.
State government
Governor: 4-year term.
State senators: 40; 2-year terms.
State representatives: 160; 2-year terms.
Counties: 14.
Federal government
United States senators: 2.
United States representatives: 10.
Electoral votes: 12.
Sources of information
For information about tourism, write to: Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism, State Transportation Building, 10 Park Plaza, Boston, MA 02116. The Web site at also provides information.
For information on the economy, write to: Office of Business Development, 10 Park Plaza, Suite 3720, Boston, MA 02116.
The state's official Web site at also provides a gateway to much information on Massachusetts's economy, government, and history.