Dedham is a hip, happening, historic little town right on the edge of Boston with endless possibilities for people to visit and enjoy history, culture, dining, entertainment, shopping, and charming, antique neighborhoods. Rt. 109 and The Charles River run right through the heart of the historic district, which is also seat of the Norfolk County government. But, because Dedham is not yet on everyone’s map, it might be considered a drive by unless you are in the know and delve a little deeper.
For starters, the town of Dedham is brimming with history and antique charm. Founded in 1636 and originally part of Boston (it is only 7 miles from the city), it was once considered the country where many Bostonians (doctors, lawyers and financiers alike) settled for some solace and a great place to raise their families. Now, you’ll find charming, antique neighborhoods with stunning wooden clapboard houses right out of a bygone era. Not only is Dedham home to the oldest wood frame house in the U.S., The Fairbanks House, but it also is home to the first manmade canal, the Mother Brook, and the first public school in the country. The Dedham Historical Society, which plays an active role in preserving Dedham’s history, houses many historic artifacts as well as an extensive collection of the well-known, world famous, Dedham Pottery. The famous Sacco and Vanzetti trail, which was just reenacted last spring, took place at the Norfolk County Courthouse in Dedham. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on High Street, a short walk from the courthouses, is home to one of the oldest cemeteries in the Boston area with ancient gravestones featuring the names of some of Boston’s oldest Brahmin families.