A colonial town and home of Williams College. Endowed with natural beauty and offering many cultural attractions, "The Village Beautiful" has a proud and colorful history. The village was established in 1753 as a plantation  called West Hoosuck. Its first settlers were soldiers from nearby Fort Massachusetts which served as the Northwest Outpost of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. 

In July 1755, Colonel Ephraim Williams, Jr., enroute with his regiment of militia to join the French and Indians at Lake George, tarried long enough in Albany to write his last will and testament. He bequeathed his residuary estate for the founding and support of a free school in West Hoosuck, provided the township changed its name to Williamstown.

The town was incorporated in 1765 and renamed Williamstown. In October 1791, after many delays, fifteen scholars were admitted to the free school. By 1793 the Commonwealth granted a charter to Williams Colllege. It was a men's college until 1970 when it became co-educational.