Auburndale sits on the bank of the Charles River, bordering Waltham. The first major settler in the area was William Robinson who built a house in 1678 on what is now Freeman Street. At the time, Auburndale was centered around that general area of Lexington St, Auburn St and Auburndale Ave all come together.
Until the Reverend Charles du Maresque Pigeon, grandson of an illustrious eighteenth century local, persuaded the railroad to introduce a flag stop on its line two miles West of West Newton, this was a rural farm community. The influx of traffic from the railroad led to a surge in real estate activity with three major sub-divisions built in 1847 alone. This was the start of the village which would later become famous as the home of Norumbega Park (where the Marriot now sits) and the Riverside Recreation Area on the Charles River (which still exists). Development of the southern part of town was unaffected by the Boston and Worcester Railroad. When the Charles River Railroad was built in 1852 carrying passengers was not its primary use. Only when the two railroads joined to form the Circuit in 1886 did substantial growth occur.
Auburndale is home to LaSalle University (founded in 1851), United Parish of Auburndale (built in 1857), Auburndale Cove on the Charles, an MBTA Commuter Rail Station, the Auburndale Historic District and community resources such as the Auburndale Community Library. More than twenty buildings in Auburndale are listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Its oldest home, located at 473 Auburn dates all the way back to 1730. It was a tavern and is now a private residence.
Some points of interest include the Auburndale Cover Park & Playground; Norumbega Park Conservation Area; Turtle Lane Playhouse; Woodland Golf Club; Brae Burn Country Club; Charles River Canoe and Kayak Company.
More information on the history of Auburndale can be found on the Wikipedia Auburndale page.
There is also a video on the history of Auburndale on YouTube
Videos on Norumbega Park:
Auburndale also has a Facebook Page.