Norton is a town in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States, and contains the village of Norton Center. Home of Wheaton College, Norton hosts the Deutsche Bank Championship as well as a tournament of the PGA Tour held annually on the weekend preceding the Labor Day holiday at the TPC Boston golf club.
Norton was first settled in 1669. Then called North Taunton for its location on the northern border of Taunton, Massachusetts, the town’s name was shortened to Norton upon its official establishment on March 17, 1710.
Norton is generally low and swampy. The waters of the area are fed by the Wading River and the Canoe River. The two largest bodies of water in town are the Norton Reservoir, north of the center of town, and Winnecunnet Pond on the east (on the north side of I-495).
The town, an irregular polygon generally oriented from northeast to southwest, is bordered by Easton to the northeast, Taunton to the southeast, Rehoboth to the south, Attleboro to the southwest, and Mansfield to the northwest.
The town is bisected southeast to northwest by Interstate 495, as well as Massachusetts Route 140 from north to south and Massachusetts Route 123 from southwest to northeast. Interstate 495’s Exit 10 links the highway with Route 123. The town is also a part of the Greater Attleboro Taunton Regional Transit Authority (or GATRA) bus line. The nearest MBTA station is Mansfield.
The town is a part of three separate state representative districts; precinct one belonging to the Fourth Bristol district, precinct two belonging to the Fourteenth Bristol district, and precincts three through five belonging to the First Bristol district. The town is a part of the state senate district of the Bristol and Norfolk district.
On the national level, the town is part of Massachusetts Congressional District 4.
The town has an open town meeting form of government, with a town manager and a board of selectmen governing the town. The town is served by the central police station, three fire stations, and two post offices The town’s public library is located next to the town hall, although the original still stands on Route 140 at the town green. There is also a senior center located along Route 123 near the high school.
Norton has its own public school system, Norton Public Schools. There are three elementary schools. Norton High School is located near the center of town, next to the H.A. Yelle School.
High school students may also attend Southeast Regional Vocational-Technical High School in Easton or Bristol County Agricultural High School, otherwise known as “Bristol Aggie”, in Dighton free of charge. There are two private schools in town, New Testament Christian School, a Baptist school, and the Pinecroft School. Many students also attend private or parochial schools in the surrounding communities. Norton is also home to Wheaton College.