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Malden, a hilly woodland area north of the Mystic River, was settled by Puritans in 1640 on land purchased in 1629 from the Pennacook tribe and a further grant in 1639 by the Squaw Sachem of Mistick and her husband, Webcowet. The area was originally called the “Mistick Side” and was a part of Charlestown.
Malden is bordered by Melrose on the north, Medford on the west, Everett on the south, Revere on the east, and Saugus on the northeast. Boojum Rock located in the north west corner of Malden inside the Middlesex Fells Reservation is the highest point in Malden with an elevation of approximately 275 feet.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.1 square miles (13 km2), of which 5.1 square miles (13 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) (0.78%) is water.
Approximately 30 park sites throughout the city provide a variety of recreational facilities including tennis courts, basketball courts, playgrounds, and ballfields. Other sites include a 400-meter synthetic running track at MacDonald Stadium; 56 acres (23 ha) of the Middlesex Fells Reservation; the 25-acre (10 ha) Fellsmere Pond; a DCR-owned-and-operated swimming pool; a 30,000 square feet (2,800 m2) field house built under the new school rebuilding plan; the state-of-the-art Malden YMCA finished construction in early 2007; and Pine Banks Park, operated by a Board of Trustees with equal representation by the cities of Malden and Melrose. Waitt’s Mountain is also in Malden.
Other points of interest include the Converse Memorial Library and the Congregation Beth Israel. One of Malden’s finest and most notable landmarks is the public library which was designed by Henry Hobson Richardson and built in 1885. The initial construction of the library was funded by Malden’s first mayor, Elisha S. Converse, who also funded its acquisition of an art collection.