County Street Historic District

New Bedford

County Street Historic District

City and State: New Bedford, Massachusetts

Listed: 1986

Type of district: National Register historic district, state historic district, local historic district

Main Intersection:

[icon name=icon-download-alt]County Street National Register Historic District Report

[icon name=icon-download-alt]County Street National Register Historic District Map


The Country Street Historic District is primarily a late 18th and 19th century residential district, containing approximately 1,000 properties. A few of New Bedford’s institutional buildings are located in the district’s northeast corner. The earlier houses in the district were built during the early ship building and whaling period by Quakers. The architecture from the early period reflects Quaker simplicity. Beginning in the 1820s, and through the 1850s, when New Bedford was the dominant whaling port of the eastern seaboard, much grander mansions were built by merchants in the most popular styles of the day. After the whaling industry declined, New Bedford turned to the manufacture of textiles. The mill owners built their houses and mansions farther west in the popular styles of the second half of the 19th century, including Italianate, Queen Anne, Romanesque Revival, and others. A few mill worker houses, for the white-collar mill workers, were also built in the district.