Green Island (Massachusetts)

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Green Island, also known as North Brewster Island, is a rocky outer island in the Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area, to the north of Calf Island and Hypocrite Channel. The island has a permanent size of 2.5 acres (10,000 m2), plus an intertidal zone of a further 15 acres (61,000 m2), and is exposed from the east and northeast with little soil or plant life. The island is named after Joseph Green, a well-known merchant, who owned the island during Colonial times.[1]

Green Island is a nesting area for herring gulls, black-backed gulls, cormorants, barn swallows, red-winged blackbirds, and rats. The island is a popular location for striped bass fishermen during the summer months. However, access by humans is difficult, and especially discouraged during the birds' nesting season.[1]


During 1845, a fifty-year-old seaman named Samuel Choat came to Green Island and lived there as an independent spirit for the next twenty years. Choat constructed a crude house and made his living by fishing on the local waters. His main diet was lobster, fish, and mussels. Choat could not be encouraged to leave Green Island, even during the coldest winters.[citation needed]

In 1851, during the storm that destroyed Minot's Ledge Light off Cohasset, the tide rose so high that the inhabitants of Green Island had to be rescued by the Boston Pilot boat. In another storm in 1862, Choat's boat was broken up on the rocks surrounding the island. He was taken to Boston, where he purchased another boat and quickly returned to Green Island.[citation needed]

Due to the severity of the cold weather during the winter of 1865, Choat had to be removed from Green Island. He was 70 years of age at the time. On February 8, Choat was transferred to the State Almshouse in Bridgewater where he died on February 23, 1865.[2]

In 1869, Barrel Rock, a massive boulder of Medford granite that was deposited by an ancient glacier just west of Green Island, was removed by Major General Foster.[citation needed]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Green Island Factsheet". Boston Harbor Islands Partnership. Archived from the original on August 26, 2006. Retrieved August 9, 2006.
  2. ^ Massachusetts Vital Records, Bridgewater, 1865, Volume 184, p. 272.

Coordinates: 42°21′08.10″N 70°53′30.10″W / 42.3522500°N 70.8916944°W / 42.3522500; -70.8916944

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