Chelsea, a city of Suftblk co., Massachusetts, separated from Charlestown on the S. W. by Mystic river, which is crossed by Chelsea bridge, 3,300 ft. long. It is connected with Boston by the Eastern railroad, and also by horse railroad by way of Charlestown and Chelsea bridge. Winnisimmet ferry, the most ancient in the United States, dating from 1631, runs from the foot of Winnisimmet street, Chelsea, to the foot of Hanover street, Boston, a distance of about 1 1/3, m. The Grand Junction railroad also passes through the city. Chelsea beach, in Revere, an adjoining town, about 5 m. from Boston, is about 3 m. long, and is much resorted to in summer. The growth of Chelsea has been steady since 1830. In that year the population was 770; in 1840, 2,390; 1850, 6,701; 1800, 13,395; 1805, 14,403; 1870, 18,547. The principal public buildings are the city hall, the naval hospital, connected with the navy yard at Charlestown, the marine hospital, the academy of music, the masonic and odd fellows' halls, and Winnisimmet hall.
The city is included in the Boston customs district, and most of its inhabitants do business in that city; but there is some manufacturing, the principal establishments being a woollen mill, a brass foundery, an iron foundery and machine shop, an establishment for casting furnaces, ranges, and stoves, one manufactory each of linseed oil, table salt, fire brick, rubber goods, boot and shoe stiffenings, brooms, chairs, carriages, chewing gum, marble work, washing machines, mattresses, and paper boxes, three each of oil and varnishes, soap, bricks, varnishes and japan, and worsted goods, and one brewery. There is a national bank, with a capital of $300,000, and a savings bank, with deposits in 1871 amounting to $590,736. In 1872 the valuation of property was $10,-707,343; total taxation, $277,055 48; city debt, $1,262,700, of which $1,057,800 was funded. In 1871 there were 3,092 houses in the city. Chelsea is divided into four wards. The government is vested in a mayor, a board of aldermen consisting of two from each ward, and a common council of 19 members. The police duty is performed by a city marshal and 19 assistant marshals, and there is a police court.
The fire department is under the charge of a chief engineer and two assistant engineers, and has two steam engines, a hook and ladder company, and three hose companies. The Chelsea water works are under the charge of three commissioners. The water is brought from the Mystic water works in Charlestown, and was first introduced in 1867. The principal charitable institutions are the Winnisimmet benevolent society and the ladies' union relief society. In 1872 the city appropriated $4,890 28 for the support of the poor. The school committee, consisting of two members from each ward, has under its control a high school and 3 grammar and 12 primary schools. In 1871 there were 4 male and 58 female teachers, and an average attendance of 2,800 pupils. The free public library, which was opened Jan. 1, 1870, contains about 0,000 volumes. There are also two circulating libraries and a weekly newspaper. There 13 religious societies, viz.: 2 Baptist, 2 Congregational, 1 Episcopal, 2 Methodist, 1 Roman Catholic, 1 Unitarian, 1 Universalist, 1 Second Advent, 1 Spiritualist, and 1 Christian band.
Chelsea was settled in 1030, and was called Winnisimmet. It was a part of Boston till 1738, when with two other places it was organized as the town of Chelsea. It was incorporated as a city in 1857.
Chelsea, a parish and parliamentary borough of England, on the left bank of the Thames, formerly a village about 2 m. from London, but now a portion of its suburbs, belonging to the county of Middlesex, and constituting a part of the hundred of Ossulston; pop. of Chelsea district in 1871, 71,080, and of the borough, 258,011. It derives interest from the celebrated military asylum for invalid soldiers known as Chelsea hospital, erected here by Sir Christopher Wren in the reign of Charles IT., who laid its foundation stone, Feb. 16, 1682. It was completed in 1090 at an expense of £150,-000. It aocommodates upward of 500 resident pensioners, besides whom there are about 70,-000 out-pensioners. The annual expenditure for the maintenance of this establishment is about £1,000,000. The body of the duke of Wellington lay in state in Chelsea hospital for a few days previous to the funeral (November, 1852). The royal military asylum for the support and education of children of soldiers (especially orphans), with accommodations for 1,000 boys and girls, is in Chelsea. A children's hospital was opened in 1866. Prominent among the educational institutions are a normal school for males and one for females.
Adjoining the military hospital are the botanical gardens of the apothecaries' company, occupying four acres on the bank of the river. The old parish church forms the termination to a long grove called Cheyne walk; and the churchyard contains monuments to Sir Thomas More and Sir Hans Sloane. A beautiful suspension bridge completed in 1858, 915 ft. in length including abutments, connects Chelsea with Battersea. The steamboat traffic is accommodated by three piers. In 1871 was laid the first stone of the embankment on the N. side of the Thames. Cremorne gardens in Chelsea are a favorite popular resort. In 1867 Chelsea was constituted a borough, comprising also Fulham, Hammersmith, and Kensington, entitled to two members of parliament.