The news of this politician's wedding prompted me to look back at history to see who previously represented the Massachusetts 4th District. I was curious about the demographic changes that led to someone like him being elected (and re-elected) to that seat, in a locality that was settled long ago by English Puritans.
If you look at the list of those who previously held that seat, you will see the demographic changes at work. Notice the surnames. I see that several of the previous representatives, in earlier times, were distant relatives of my mother's line.
But around the 1940s, things seem to have changed so that WASPs, or ''Puritan descendants'' if you insist, no longer dominate that area. It appears that there was a time when Irish-American politicians inherited that area. After them came the election of Frank, who has been in office since the 1980s.
Can the social or demographic changes be blamed on the 'Puritans'? I say no; many had, since the early-to-mid-19th century, moved on to settle the Western and Midwestern states, or moved to more remote, rural areas of New England. But I'd say this area has belonged to immigrant-stock people for some time. In part, I think the colonial-stock people chose to move on rather than adapt to the cultures of the immigrants, who became more and more numerous. Perhaps this was a precursor or ''White flight.'' Or you might say, from another point of view, it was ''ethnic cleansing.''