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Rockport

Trip Planner USA  /  Massachusetts  /  Cape Ann  /  Rockport
(4.6/5 based on 1,600+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: sightseeing, nature, nightlife
Rockport is a town in Essex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 6,952 at the 2010 census. Rockport is located approximately northeast of Boston at the tip of the Cape Ann peninsula. It is directly east of Gloucester and is surrounded on three sides by the Atlantic Ocean.Part of the town comprises the census-designated place of Rockport.HistoryBefore the coming of the English explorers and colonists, Cape Ann was home to a number of Native American villages, inhabited by members of the Agawam tribe. Samuel de Champlain named the peninsula "Cap Aux Isles" in 1605, and his expedition may have landed there briefly. By the time the first Europeans founded a permanent settlement at Gloucester in 1623, most of the Agawams had been killed by diseases caught from early contacts with Europeans.The area that is now Rockport was simply an uninhabited part of Gloucester for more than 100 years, and was primarily used as a source of timber—especially pine-for shipbuilding. The area around Cape Ann was also one of the best fishing grounds in New England. In 1743, a dock was built at Rockport harbor on Sandy Bay and was used for both timber and fishing. By the beginning of the 19th century, the first granite quarries were developed, and by the 1830s, Rockport granite was being shipped to cities and towns throughout the East Coast of the United States.
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