Walpole is a town in Norfolk County, Massachusetts, United States. Walpole Town, as the Census refers to it, is located about 13 miles (21 km) south of downtown Boston and 23.5 miles (37.8 km) north of Providence, Rhode Island. In 2017 the Department of Census reported the population of Walpole was 25,073. Walpole was first settled in 1659 and was considered a part of Dedham until officially incorporated in 1724. The town was named after Sir Robert Walpole, de facto first Prime Minister of Great Britain. It also encompasses the entirely distinct entity of Walpole (CDP), with its much smaller area of 2.9 square miles.
It started out as a territory that was claimed by the Neponset Native American tribe. The Neponset tribe officially claimed the area that is now Walpole, and some of its surrounding territory, in 1635. The town of Dedham was not included in this claim, so they began to negotiate with the Neponset tribe to gain land. In 1636, a deal was made between the town of Dedham and the Neponsets to grant Dedham lands that now comprise the towns of Walpole, Norwood, Westwood, Medfield, Norfolk and Dover as well as Dedham. The land given to Dedham in this deal currently includes parts of 16 different towns.
After the territory was bought from Dedham, the saw mill industry began to rise in the area.