Lowell National Historical Park

Boston's Western Suburbs

The historic buildings in the city center – connected by the trolley and canal boats – constitute the national park, which gives a fascinating peek at the workings of a 19th-century industrial town. Stop first at the Market Mills Visitors Center to pick up a map and check out the general exhibits. An introductory multimedia video on historic Lowell is shown every half-hour.

Five blocks northeast along the river, the fascinating Boott Cotton Mills Museum has exhibits that chronicle the rise and fall of the industrial revolution in Lowell, including technological changes, labor movements and immigration. The highlight is a working weave room, with 88 power looms. A special exhibit on Mill Girls & Immigrants examines the lives of working people.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Boston's Western Suburbs attractions

1. Brush Art Gallery & Studios

0.02 MILES

This gallery and studio space was founded by the local historical commission as part of the city's ongoing revitalization efforts. Stop by to see exhibits…

2. New England Quilt Museum

0.07 MILES

This little museum has found its niche. The friendly, knowledgeable staff members show off a collection of nearly 500 antique and contemporary quilts from…

3. Whistler House Museum of Art

0.12 MILES

James Abbott McNeill Whistler's birthplace, built in 1823, is the home of the Lowell Art Association. It houses a small collection of work by New England…

4. Mill Girls & Immigrants

0.29 MILES

This special exhibit examines the lives of working people. There are also a few Jack Kerouac artifacts, including the Lowell writer's typewriter and…

5. Jack Kerouac Commemorative

0.34 MILES

Dedicated in 1988, the Jack Kerouac Com­memorative features a landscaped path where excerpts of the writer’s work are posted, including opening passages…

6. Boott Cotton Mills Museum

0.37 MILES

Five blocks northeast of the visitors center, the Boott Cotton Mills Museum has exhibits that chronicle the rise and fall of the industrial revolution in…

7. Edson Cemetery

1.79 MILES

Two miles south of Lowell center, Kerouac is buried in the Sampas family plot at Edson Cemetery. His grave remains a pilgrimage site for devotees who were…

8. Thoreau Farm

12.11 MILES

Fans of Thoreau can travel off the beaten path to the house where he was born, which is about 2.4 miles east of Concord center. Henry David lived in his…