Until the middle of the 19th century, parts of Arlington, Medford, Cambridge, and Woburn comprised what is now Winchester. Representatives of the planned new town selected the name Winchester in recognition of Colonel William P.The movement toward incorporation of what, by this time, was called South Woburn was likely precipitated by the rise of the Whig Party in Massachusetts (History of Winchester, Massachusetts by H. Winchester of nearby Watertown, who pledged ,000 toward the construction of the first town hall.
21.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older.
The average household size was 2.75 and the average family size was 3.26. According to a 2008 estimate, the median income for a household in the town was $125,952, and the median income for a family was $200,000 . About 1.3% of families and 2.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.0% of those under the age of 18 and 2.3% ages 65 or older. The most common crime is property crime, with 62 burglaries reported in 2010.
In the early 20th century, growth continued apace as Winchester evolved from its agri-industrial roots into the bedroom community it is today.
A rich mix of immigrants (the Irish in the northern and eastern neighborhoods, a smattering of African-Americans who flocked to the New Hope Baptist Church in the highlands, and finally Italians who came to work in the westside farms and live in the "Plains" to the east) complemented Winchester's Yankee forebears.
Prior to incorporation, the Middlesex Canal, linking the Merrimack River to Boston, was completed through then Waterfield.
It flourished from 1803–36, until the Boston and Lowell Railroad completed a line which neatly bisected the town and provided it with two stations.Able to deliver passengers as well as goods, the railroad soon bankrupted the canal and spurred more people to move to the area.The first church was built in 1840, the Post Office followed in 1841, and soon after incorporation town schools were started.The population was 21,374 at the 2010 United States Census.The land on which Winchester now sits was purchased from Native Americans by representatives of the settlement of Charlestown in 1639, and the area was first settled by Europeans in 1640.Industries small and large followed, including the Beggs and Cobb tannery and the Winn Watch Hand factory which would operate well into the 20th century.