Williamstown is located in Berkshire County, in the northwest corner of Massachusetts, sharing a border with Vermont to the north and New York to the west. The town was incorporated in1765 according to the will of Col. Ephraim Williams, who was killed in the French and Indian War. Col. Williams bequeathed a significant sum to the town on the condition that the town would be named after him and that a free school would be established. In 1791 the school opened but only lasted a short time as a free school, becoming Williams College in 1793.
The population of the town is approximately 8,000, while neighboring North Adams is 13,400, and Pittsfield to the south is 43,700. The primary employer is Williams College, a premier private liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2000+ students. Other area colleges are Mass College of Liberal Arts (North Adams, 1700 students) and Berkshire Community College (Pittsfield, 1500 students.)
The Northern Berkshire area has three major art museums: Clark Art Institute, Williams College Art Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art.
Williamstown is also host to the Williamstown Theatre Festival, a widely known summer stock theatre that engages nationally acclaimed actors and actresses.