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HISTORY
Blandford is situated in the eastern foothills of the Green Mountains and is criss-crossed by streams. It is a rural hill town on the historic western corridor between Connecticut and the Housatonic Valley and is on an early route of travel from Springfield to Albany. This was an important military highway from New York during the revolution as is testified by the number of taverns that were recorded on the post road servicing travellers.

The town was originally cut up into lots and sold to Scotch-Irish Presbyterians who immigrated from Hopkinton and created an agricultural and grazing based economy. There were some early tanneries, paper and cardboard mills, but the major emphasis in the 19th century was dairy farming. Blandford led the county in cheese production in 1845 and then again 1870 and despite becoming a favored summer resort for Springfield and Westfield families, has remained in modern times a community of dairy farms and orchards.

The town has retained a cluster of notable buildings in the center, including a handsome Greek revival church, and residents are proud of the historic character of the center. Development pressures in modern times come from those creating recreational or suburban homes.

GEOGRAPHY
Blandford is located near the eastern edge of the Berkshire Hills, above an ancient rift zone where the Connecticut River Valley is downfaulted about one thousand feet (300 m). The town's elevations range from about 400 feet (120 m) along streams approaching the Westfield River (a major tributary of the Connecticut) to hilltops as high as 1700 feet (500 m). Elevations increase to the west with expansive views eastward across the Connecticut River Valley as far as Mount Monadnock in southern New Hampshire. Local relief is as high as 500 feet (150 m) near streams flowing into the Westfield River, but away from these streams the town is characterised by rolling uplands.

Abandoned fields and pastures have reverted to forests of beech, birch, maple, hemlock, pine and oak. Land reserved for woodlots and never cleared was repeatedly logged, however logging has fallen off in recent decades so forests are reclaiming some old growth qualities and animal species that have been absent or rare for some 200 years are returning.

Blandford has significant water resources in its streams and ponds. The city of Springfield has reserved the upper watershed of the Little River, a tributary of the Westfield as the city's main water supply, Cobble Mountain Reservoir. Many people of this town do know that If you listen quietly on cobble mountain road you can still hear General Knox traveling on his horse to battle through Blandford.


COUNTY: Hampden
SETTLED: 1735
INCORPORATED: 1741
AREA: 53.6 square miles
ELEVATION: 1,452 feet
POPULATION (2010): 1,233