Back in the mid-1600s, the SouthCoast was starting to take shape. Plimouth Patuxet was growing, towns such as New Bedford and Raynham were just getting settled and the southern coast of Massachusetts was becoming the renowned shipping area it still is today.

Though we think of our local history as going so far back, it is sometimes hard to picture where the rest of the world was as our little corner was just starting out.

With the world so connected these days, it's hard to think of the major historical moments that were happening around the globe at the same time our home cities and towns were being settled that the settlers knew nothing about.

Yet there are so many of those exact types of moments.

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Like way back in 1638, while Taunton was first being settled, Louis XIV was born in France. The Sun King went on to have the longest reign over France in history and built Versailles into the jaw-dropping tourist destination that it is today.

In 1640 settlers were forming the waterfront town on New Bedford as caffeine fans of Venice were enjoying the opening of the first coffeehouse in all of Europe.

As Raynham came to be what we know today in 1652, at the very tip of Africa, Dutch sailor Jan van Riebeeck was establishing a resupply camp for the Dutch East India Company. This supply camp later became the city of Cape Town, now the legislative capital of the entire country.

The year 1677 introduced Somerset to the SouthCoast and also introduced ice cream to the city of Paris.

Historical moments big and small happen every day of every year, but only a few years mark the moments our local cities and towns came to be. Keep scrolling to see when each one became part of the SouthCoast we know and love today.

Oldest SouthCoast Cities and Towns

There is a lot of history here on the SouthCoast. From the Pilgrims landing at Plymouth Rock to the centuries-old whaling industry in New Bedford, SouthCoast cities and towns have been around since before America became an independent nation.

But exactly which town in our corner of the world was settled first? We're listing our local places from newest to oldest. And the last city may surprise you.

LOOK: Food history from the year you were born

From product innovations to major recalls, Stacker researched what happened in food history every year since 1921, according to news and government sources.

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