Martha's Vineyard, an island lying off the S. coast of Massachusetts, and forming the principal portion of Dukes co. With Ohap-paquiddick island, which lies immediately adjacent at its E. extremity and may be considered a portion of it, it is divided into four towns. Chilmark, Edgartown, Gay Head, and Tisbury; aggrregate population in 1870, 3,088. At (jay Head there is a remnant of the former Indian possessors of the island, now mostly mixed with negro blood. Edgartown is 14 m. 8. by E. of Wood's Hole on Gape God. 25 m. W. by N. of Nantucket, 30 m. S. E. of New Bedford, and 75 m. S. S. E. of Boston. Martha Vine-vard. which is separated from the mainland by Vineyard sound, is 21 m. long and 6 m. in average breadth. The surface is generally level, though there are elevations rising to the height of 150 ft. above the sea. The promontory of Gay Head, at the S. W. extremity, is 134 ft. above high water, and is much visited. On it there is a lighthouse (Int. 41° 20' 52" X., Ion. 19' 47 W.), showing a white flashing light, 170 ft. above the sea. The soil is generally light, and a great part of the surface is covered with low forests.
The inhabitants are chiefly engaged in navigation and Ashing. - Martha's Vineyard was discovered by Bartholomew Gosnold in 1602, though he gave the name, not to the island which now bears it, but to a neighboring islet which is now called No Man's Land. In lt',42 Martha's Vineyard was settled by Thomas Maybew, who had been a merchant at Southampton, England. In 1644 it was placed under the jurisdiction of Massachusetts, and in 1664 it was transferred to New York, but was restored to Massachusetts in 1692. It suffered much during the revolutionary war from the British, who plundered it of 2,000 head of cattle. It has of late years become noted for its annual camp meetings and as a summer resort. (See Edgartown).