West Tisbury, Massachusetts

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West Tisbury is a town located on Martha's Vineyard in Dukes County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 2,467 at the 2000 census. Along with Chilmark and Aquinnah, West Tisbury forms "Up-Island" Martha's Vineyard.



West Tisbury was first settled by English settlers in 1669 as part of the town of Tisbury. The town was officially incorporated in 1892, the last town on Martha's Vineyard to be incorporated. Despite its separation from Tisbury, the original settlement of the town is still located in West Tisbury. Historically, it has been the agricultural heartland of the island. Up through the 1980s West Tisbury was one of the quickest growing communities on the island.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 41.7 square miles (108.1 km²), of which, 25.0 square miles (64.8 km²) of it is land and 16.7 square miles (43.3 km²) of it (40.08%) is water. Statistically, West Tisbury ranks 123rd out of 351 communities in the Commonwealth in terms of land area, and is the second largest town (behind Edgartown) on the Vineyard. West Tisbury is bordered by Vineyard Sound to the northwest, Tisbury to the northeast, Edgartown to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the south, and Chilmark to the west, and includes the regions known as Lambert's Cove and Makonikey. The town also shares a common corner with Oak Bluffs, where the two towns meet with Tisbury and Edgartown.

West Tisbury is mostly rural, with more forestation to the north and east and most of the town's agrarian areas around the brooks that feed into Tisbury Great Pond and its surrounding ponds. The Sound side of town also has several ponds; none are nearly the size of the Atlantic side ones. There are several refuges and reservations around town, the largest being the Long Point Wildlife Refuge just east of Tisbury Great Pond. The town is also home to approximately half of the Manuel F. Correllus State Forest, which dominates the center of the island.

Just south of the forest lies Martha's Vineyard Airport, which the town shares with Edgartown (although the facilities are mostly in West Tisbury). The airport provides regional service to airports on the mainland and at Nantucket.

The area known as Cedar Tree Neck is the place that inspired Narnia, the setting for the chronicles of Narnia, written by C. S. Lewis.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 2,467 people, 1,034 households, and 668 families residing in the town. The population density was 98.6 people per square mile (38.1/km²). There were 1,849 housing units at an average density of 73.9/sq mi (28.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.23% White, 0.69% African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.36% Asian, 0.28% Pacific Islander, 0.49% from other races, and 1.74% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.69% of the population.

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