645 Washington St, Duxbury, MA 02332, USA
Owned By: Town of Duxbury
This scenic spot features two historic sites as well as a town landing/ boat launch. Located across the street from the Reynolds-Maxwell Garden, on the banks of the Bluefish River.
The Bluefish River estuary was an active shipbuilding center in the early 1800s. Six shipyards, as well as related industries such as forges, sail lofts, and a rope walk were all present along the river.
The Bluefish River Firehouse, originally known as Engine Company #1, originally stood on St. George Street, next to what was then the town library (c. 1906). In 1908, the building was moved to its present location on the Bluefish River, to make room for the construction of the Wright Building. It served as a firehouse until the central fire station was built in 1968. It is now used as a boathouse for the Harbormaster.
The Bluefish River Grist Mill dates back to 1766, when a mill and dam were established at this spot. It was a tide mill, powered by the incoming and outgoing tides. During Duxbury’s shipbuilding era, after the construction of a bridge here, mills to power ship smith and gunsmith shops were added. The last mill at this location was demolished in 1877.
This land is within the region of the Patuxet Wampanoag tribe, who for centuries have inhabited the area around the Jones River now known as Duxbury, Kingston and Plymouth.
No trails, but expand your visit by crossing Washington Street and checking out the Reynolds-Maxwell Garden, which offers additional river views.
Habitats and Wildlife
The Bluefish River originates in ponds and springs between Duxbury’s Station & Washington Streets and Partridge Road, and flows north, parallel to the coast, to the Cushman Preserve. From there, it turns east, passing under Washington Street, where it opens up into a broad estuary. The Bluefish River merges with the Duxbury Back River in Duxbury Bay.
Historic Site: Yes
Boat Launch: Yes
Hours: Dawn to Dusk
Parking: Limited on-site parking.
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Dogs: Dogs must remain on leash.
Boat Ramp: No
ADA Access: No
Scenic Views: Yes
Waterbody/Watershed: Bluefish River