thanks to justin howard at the northern middlesex council of governments, i've been further informed, as is also noted within the city of lowell web site
, that the date of incorporation for lowell, despite what might be implied by all those "entering lowell" signs, is 1836, not 1826. 1826 would be the date of the city's founding. i'm not sure i fully understand the distinction between founding and incorporation as is being made here, but apparently the commonwealth prefers the implication of age, while the council and the city stick to the letter of the legal incorporation law, and we have web sites with pictures of one and captions of the other. here's the city talking about both
either way, it's more fun with numbers, and ya learn sumthin new every day.