In 1642, Lexington was settled as a farming community and was part of Cambridge. In 1713, it was incorporated as a separate town. In 1775, Lexington was home to the first shots fired in the American Revolutionary War. Today, the town is primarily a residential area and its residents are active in the community. The largest employment sectors are service and manufacturing.
Lexington is a popular tourist destination with many historical homes and sites, including the Minuteman Statue, The Old Belfry, Buckman Tavern, Lexington Depot, and Hancock-Clarke House. The Lexington Arts and Crafts Society and Munroe Center for the Arts both offer local art exhibits, workshops, and other events.
Outdoor recreational opportunities include golfing at Pine Meadows Golf Club. For swimmers, there are two outdoor swimming pools and the Old Reservoir, a freshwater pond with a sandy beach. People also enjoy kayaking at the Old Reservoir. The town has basketball courts, baseball fields, and trails for biking, walking, and jogging. The Minuteman Bikeway also passes through Lexington.
The town center is a major shopping area with a variety of specialty shops, restaurants, and fine arts galleries. Many shops and restaurants are on Massachusetts Avenue. Lexington schools rank among the top schools in the state and in the country, making this a popular place for families.