A Watertown History Quiz

No matter whether you’ve lived in Watertown one year or twenty, it’s easy to feel like a native here pretty quickly. But – how well do you know your history about this amazing town? Ready to take a little quiz to see where you land? Let’s do this!

The City of Watertown was originally founded as a settlement that included parts of

  1. Belmont

  2. Weston and Waltham

  3. Weston, Waltham, Belmont, Lincoln and Cambridge

If you answered C, you are correct! At the time of its founding in 1630, Watertown was one of the earliest and largest of the Massachusetts Bay settlements.

In 1630, Watertown founding resident Roger Clapp was met on the banks of the Charles River by the Pequosette Indians, who gifted his traveling party with,

  1. Animal pelts

  2. A fish

  3. A peace pipe

Anyone who’s looked closely at the official Watertown seal will recognize the correct answer as B! And it was a bass, to be exact.

Watertown’s Charles River was originally called the Massachusetts, but was later renamed – why?

  1. It was renamed in honor of King Charles I.

  2. Settlers renamed the river to distinguish it from what was then the beginnings of Massachusetts Avenue.

  3. It was renamed after the Charles family, who were industrialists that made a significant financial contribution to the Watertown economy.

Any Anglophiles out there? If so, you probably answered A, which is correct! Good old King Charles gets the credit for that one.

Watertown was at one point a booming center for commerce and manufacturing. The Bemis Factory, built in 1807, was the first location in the country to manufacture which product?

  1. Cotton starch paper

  2. Milk chocolate

  3. Cotton sail cloth, also known as duck cloth

If you’ve ever taken a tour of the USS Constitution, then you may know the correct answer is C! Bemis is in fact responsible for supplying all the sailcloth for that historic ship.

Which of these famous Revolutionary War figures did NOT spend time in Watertown?

  1. Paul Revere

  2. Nathan Hale

  3. George Washington

Unfortunately for him, the correct answer is B; poor Nathan Hale met his end in what’s now the heart of New York City, executed for spying on the British soldiers.

So – how did you do?? If you got 1 out of 5 answers right, we’re afraid you’re still a Watertown Wannabe. 3 out of 5 elevates you to Watertown Winner; and if you got a perfect 5 out of 5, you have earned the mantle Watertown Warrior – wear it with pride!