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About Lowell

The renaissance city Lowell, Massachusetts is an exciting crossroads where diverse cultures, history and creativity intersect. Let this vibrant city be your stage as you get ready for all the world has to offer.

History, Culture, Creativity

Canal at night

The birthplace of Jack Kerouac and the Industrial Revolution, Lowell's history echoes all around you. Former mill buildings and cobblestone streets now add charm to a bustling downtown, steps away from the UMass Lowell campus, which boasts a thriving arts scene, a population rich in cultural diversity and a flair for festivals.

Discover restaurants representing more than a dozen different cultures. Spend a day exploring art galleries or take in a show. Stroll along the Merrimack River, which winds through the city center, and enjoy a picnic on the esplanade. Hike, bike or cross-country ski more than 1,000 acres of state forest nearby.

Lowell's location at the intersections of Routes 495, 93, and 3 extends your education beyond the classroom, with easy access to hands-on learning opportunities such as co-ops and internships. And with Route 128 nearby and Boston only a 40-minute commuter rail ride away, once you graduate you're right where the jobs are.

  • Jack Kerouac lived in three neighborhoods in Lowell: Centralville, Pawtucketville and the Highlands. Despite being French-Canadian, he never lived in Little Canada.
  • By 1850, less than 50 years after their establishment, the mills in Lowell were annually producing enough cloth to circle the earth twice!
  • Alexander Graham Bell patented the telephone in 1876, but in 1880, the first city to use telephone numbers was Lowell.
  • The 5.6 miles of hand-dug canals in Lowell channeled the Merrimack River's 32-foot drop to Lowell's mills, providing power for the mill machinery in the 19th century.
  • The Lowell Cemetery on 77 Knapp Avenue is the fourth oldest garden cemetery in the U.S.; it dates back to the 1840's.
  • The soft drink, Moxie was invented as a medicine in Lowell in 1876 and claimed to cure paralysis.
  • The first CVS was established in downtown Lowell in 1963, it began as a "Customer Value Store" on Merrimack Street.
  • Lowell's downtown is part of the Lowell National Historical Park, established in 1979 as the first urban National Park in the country.
  • Death Cab for Cutie's song, "Lowell, MA," features lines about the city - it was featured on their album "We Have the Facts and We're Voting Yes," released in 2000.
  • Lowell is home to the first ever National Human Dog Sled Race, which takes place every February during Winterfest.