Search billions of records on
History  of Marlboro by Charles Hudson Pub 1862
Early Reminiscence By Ella Bigelow Pub 1910
Early News Paper Articles The Daily Enterprise 1891 thru 1910
Massachusetts History by L. Barr Vol I - IV

Through the Year 1910

Sudbury was Marlborough's "mother town".  The General Court was petitioned in 1656 to make a town "eight miles distant" from Sudbury, which petition was granted and the Marlborough Plantation was formed.

Prior to this, Mr. Eliot had granted to the Indians a place which they named "Ockoocangansett" which included parts of Marlborough the areas of the hill at the old Meeting House now the land occupied by the Walker Building and surrounding lands; the lands consisted of 150 acres or more.  The area was once known as "Whipsufferadge or Whipsuppenicke".

The making of Marlborough.....

Marlborough - a town 1660
Agagauquamasset - became part of Marlborough 1716
Westborough - part of it came from Marlborough 1717
Southborough - all came from Marlborough 1727
Stow - bound to Marlborough 1783
Berlin - part came from Marlborough 1784
Framingham - part of it went to Marlborough 1791
Northborough - bound to Marlborough 1807
Bolton - part came from Marlborough 1829
Southborough - part returned to Marlborough 1843
Hudson - all came from Marlborough 1863
Marlboro a city 1890

When the good folks came over from Sudbury town to start a new home in Whipsufferadge or Marlborough, the first thing they did after laying out their homesteads and holding meeting to form necessary laws was to build a place for general worship.  Cotton Mather the spiritual advisor declared that the place of meeting must be called a "Meeting House", this log building was located on the hill which is now occupied by the Walker Building. In March of 1676, this thatched roof log building was attacked by Indians and burned to the ground.

Marlborough Petition

In May 1656, several of the leading inhabitants of Sudbury sent a petition to the General Court asking that they and their families be allowed to remove to a place eight miles west of Sudbury for the purpose of forming a new plantation. The granting of this petition was the beginning of the City of Marlborough. Following is a


The writer of this information is unknown, the source appears to be from Hudson's book

" To the Hon. Governor, Dep. Governor. Magistrates and Deputies of the General Court now assembled in Boston.

“The Humble Petition of several of the inhabitants of Sudburv, whose names are here underwritten showeth:-That whereas your Petitioners have lived divers years in Sudbury, and God hath been pleased to increase our children, which are now divers of them grown to man's estate: and we, many of us grown into years, so that wee should bee glad to see them settled before the Lord take us away from hence, as also God having given us some considerable quantity  cattle so that wee are

so straightened that wee cannot so comfortably subsist as could be desired; and some of us having taken some pains to view the country, we have found a place which lyeth westward about eight miles from Sudbury, which wee conceive might be comfortable for our subsistence.

" It is therefore the humble request of your Petitioners to this Hon'd Court, that you would be pleased to grant unto us eight miles square for to make a plantation.

"If it shall please this Hon'd Court to grant our Petition, it 'is further then the request of your Petitioners to this Hon'd Court, that you will he pleased to appoint Mr. Thomas Danforth, or Liestenul Fisher to lay out the bounds of the Plantation, and we shall satisfy those whom this Hon'd Court shall please to employ in it.

" So apprehending this weighty occasion, we shall no further trouble this Hon'd Court but shall ever pray for your happiness.

Edmund Rice  Thomas Goodnow  John Bent Sen'r.
William Ward  John Ruddocke  John Maynard.
Thomas King  Henry Rice   Richard Newton.
John Woods  John Howe   Peter Bent.
Edward Rice. "

A portion of the land asked for by the Sudbury people had already been granted to the Indians, upon the petition of the Apostle Eliot in their behalf, and the General Court granted permission to the Sudbury men to form a plantation on such a part of the land asked for as was not already in possession of the Indians, provided that twenty or more families should be settled there within three years. These conditions were accepted by the Sudbury men, and the plantation was laid out by Edward Jackson, Thomas Danforth, Ephraim Child and Capt. Lusher.

The plantation laid out for the Indians was known by the name of Ockoocangansett, and was situated in the northeasterly- section of the present city and included the hill back of the High School Common, and in fact, the Common itself. The Indian Planting Field consisted of some one hundred and fifty acres located on the hill back of the Common.

The plantation extended north and east about three miles and contained about six thousand acres in a wild and uncultivated state.

The English plantation was situated to the south and west of the Indian plantation and included the present towns of Northborough. Southborough and Westborough.

Having obtained the grant of the to township which they called Whipsufferage or Whipsupernicke, they held their first town-meeting on the 25th of September, 1656. The number of inhabitants increased rapidly during tile next four years, and, on June 12, 1660, the plantation was incorporated as a town and named Marlborough.

Having assigned house lots to all proprietors, it was voted on Februarv 10, 1662, that all unoccupied  lands, except eighty acres of upland, should remain a perpetual cow common for the use of the town.

Every Puritan settlement desired at once to have a spiritual advisor and preacher, and consequentlv the Rev. William Brimsmead was selected as the first minister. In April 1661 a house wasas built for him. Obadiah Ward, Christopher Bannister and Richard Barnes being employed by the town to build it. They were paid in corn, wheat and rye, fifteen pounds of each to be paid at stated intervals as the work progressed.

Having provided a house for the minister, they next built a meetinghouse on the spot where the present High school building stands. This was within the limits of the Indian Planting Field, and was one of the sources of hostile feeling on the part of the Indians. A tax of twelve pence per acre on each house lot was imposed to meet the expense.

For the below locations, see map after these names. Map section is of Marlborough in 1900.
The RED numbers on the map correpond with corresponding numbers below indicate the location of the property.
The BLUE numbers on the map with corresponding numbers below indicate the area or direction the property is in

1. John Howe is supposed to have been tile first white man who settled in Marlborough. He built a little cabin east of the Indian Planting Field, about one-third of a mile northeast of the Union Church, on the spot known as the Edward Rice farm. This was probably in 1657 or 1658.

2. Edmund Rice had his home where the City Hall now stands.

3. William Ward lived on what is now known as the Hayden Farm, off West Main street.

4. John Woods, Senior, lived on the Southborough road.

5. John Maynard lived on the Israel Howe farm, west of the John Woods place.

6. Jonathan Johnson's house lot was directly opposite the High School Common, and was given him on condition that he should reside in town a specified time, and do the smith work for the people.

7. John Ruddocke's home was where the Joseph Howe house now stands on the west side of Mechanic street. He was one of the wealthiest and best educated men in town. His was the first frame house built in town. The original frame now forms a part of the Waugh house, Mechanic street.

8. Christopher Bannister's house lot was north of John Ruddocke's.

9. John Barrett lived north of and on the land adjoining Christopher Bannister's, directly opposite the W. F. Gleason place on Hudson street.

10. Abraham Howe lived on the spot where the Pleasant street school house now stands.

11. Edward Rice lived a little east of the place now known as the Otis Russell place.

12. Thomas Rice lived north of Lake Williams not far from the Moses Howe place.

13. William Kerly lived at the lower end of what is now known as South street.

14. Samuel Brigham lived where the late Mr. Francis C. Curtis resided on East Main street.

15. Thomas Brigham lived in the weasterly part of the town on the Noprthborough road on the place known as the Landry house.  The old part of the house is said to be the oldest house now standing in town

16. John Bent and Peter Bent lived where the William Stevens house now stands, Stevens Corner.

17. Richard Barnes lived where Charles Jones know resides.

18. Abraham Williams lived where the Williams Tavern (Gates House) now stands.

19. Thomas Goodnow resided on the spot where the Allen house now stands; on Ash street.

When Marlborough was first settled, the “Connecticut Way," or road, ran through the town. Over this road, called by the people the "Great Road, " the first line of mail coaches was run by Capt. Pease, and it was over this road that General Washington passed in 1789, when he stopped and dined at the old Williams tavern.

After the first church that stood on the High school Common was burned by the Indians in 1636, another was built on the same spot. This stood until 1683, when a larger one was built near the same place. This stood for more than a hundred years, or until about the year 1856, when a division occurred and two meeting houses were built one at Spring Hill and the other in the West Part.

The oldest burying ground, or “church yard" as it was called, is undoubtedly the Spring Hill cemetery.  Many of the first settlers are buried here, and among them several soldiers of the Revolution. Capt. Hutchinson, the first person buried here was shot by Indians August 2d, 1673.

The Indians in Marlborough were a branch of the Natick or Wamesit tribes, who were located on the Merrimac, where the city of Lowell now stands. The fact that they had planting grounds, indicated that they were more advanced in civilization than most of the savage tribes. This teas chiefly due to their belonging to the tribes of Indians who had been under tile teachings of John Eliot.

Eliot was born in England in 1601, and came to America in 1631. He became much interested in the Indians, and in 1645 began preaching to them. To prepare himself for the work he learned their language.

In 1675, Philip, the chief of the Wampanoags, planned to drive the white people away. He feared that if they were allowed to remain they would in time, get possession of all the land. He went among all the different tribes of Indians, and induced them to engage in a war. The white people all over New England were attacked. There was safety nowhere. The Indians went from town to town, burning the dwellings of the white people often attacking them in the dead of night and butchering them.  They often shot down men while at work in the fields and carried women and children into captivity.

Thinking that Marlborough would be attacked,  the white people held a meeting in October 1675, to prepare themselves. At the meeting they agreed to build garrisons or forts for safety in case the Indians should attack the town. Nine garrisons were established and maintained as follows:

At William Kerly's two soldiers allowed by the government, and in case of danger, nine citizens should repair to the place. This garrison was at the southern end of what is now South street.

At Jonathan Johnson's house there should be nine soldiers and three of the citizens. (Opposite High School Common.)

At Deacon Ward's garrison there should be three soldiers and six citizens. (Residents of Chandler Fay.)

At Sergeant Wood's house there should be two soldiers and six citizens. (Road to Southborough)

At Abraham Williams' house there should be three soldiers stationed. (Williams Tavern.)

At Joseph Rice's house there should be three citizens.

At Thomas Rice's house two soldiers and six citizens should be stationed. (Residents of Mr. Hinckley.)

At Peter Bent's house three soldiers should be stationed. (Residents of William Stevens' house.)

The government stationed the soldiers in the various garrisons of the town. They remained for a short time and guarded the town, when, for various reasons, thinking that the Indians would not attack Marlborough, the soldiers withdrew to their homes, much to the regret of the white people, who still feared an attack.

Within four days after the soldiers left, the Indians made their appearance. This was on Sunday morning, March 26, 1676. The people were assembled in the church, and Rev. Mr. Brimsmead had prayed for safety- and protection, and a hymn had been song. He had just begun his sermon, when be was startled by the cry, "The Indians are upon us." The meeting was at once broken up, and the people all ran to the nearest garrison. Moses Newton, son of Richard Newton, one of the thirteen original proprietors of the town, seeing an old lady who could nut run as rapidly as the others, went to her aid and led her into the garrison. In doing this he received a wound in his elbow, from the effects of which he never recovered.

Being in the garrison the people could defend themselves, but could not protect their property. Thirteen houses and barns were burned, fences were torn down. fruit trees were hacked and peeled. and the cattle were killed. Many of the inhabitants left Marlborough and went to Watertown, Concord and other towns.

After the attack upon Marlborough, the Indians, numbering about three hundred, retired to the woods and encamped for the night. Lieut. Jacobs of the garrison of Marlborough, attacked them when they were wrapped in sleep, and killed and wounded about forty, sustaining no loss himself. The Indians, it seems, determined to punish the white people
for thus attacking them; for, on the 17th of April, 1676, the largest number of Indians which had appeared in this neighborhood attacked Sudbury. The portion of Sudbury which was attacked is now the town of Wayland. Although the white people fought desperately, the Indians, by setting fire to the woods, drove them into such a position that they were able to kill or capture most of them. Captain Brocklebank and Captain Wadsworth were among the killed. The loss of these brave men and so many of their gallant followers spread grief and consternation through Marlborough and the neighboring towns. So great was the dismay that the settlement was substantially broken up, most of the families removing to the older towns for safety.

The white people who had left Marlborough during the war returned at its close, and in 1677 a town-meeting was called and they again elected officers and attended to the town business.

Among the first things to receive attention after the choice of officers was the providing of another place of worship. They accordingly erected a new meeting-house, which, like the former one, was thatched with straw. This house was located on the old spot, and being left in an unfinished condition, it lasted but a few years. In 1688 a new church was built which was considered very grand for those days. This church stood for one hundred and twenty years.

Although Marlborough teas not the scene of any battles during the French and Indian Wars, the savages in many instances stole through the townnship and carried several persons into captivity. In many cases the people were compelled to desert their farms, leaving their lands untilled while they flocked to their garrisons as the only means of safety. King 'William's War began in 1690. In Lancaster, on the 18th of July, 1692, a party of Indians assaulted the house of Peter Joslin, who was working in the field, killed his wife, three children, and a widow residing with the family. Elizabeth Howe of Marlborough, the granddaughter of John Howe, the first white settler of Marlborough, was at the house visiting Mrs. Joslin, who was a sister of hers.

She, with one of the Joslin children, was carried into captivity. The child was murdered in the wilderness, but Mrs. Howe was kept as a captive for four years, when she was redeemed by the government. After she returned to her friends, she was married to Thomas Keyes to whom she was engaged before her capture. She never fully recovered from the shock of terror she experienced at the time she was made a prisoner, although she lived to the age of eighty-seven years. King William's War lasted until 1697. Peace lasted only five years. In 1702 Queen Anne ascended the throne of England, and the French in Canada and the English colonists in America were once more engaged in fighting against each other. The Indians in Canada assisted the French, and often came down with them upon the English, as they had done during King William's War. On the 31st of July, 1704, Captain Thomas Howe of  Marlborough, hearing that the town had been suddenly attacked by a body of six or seven hundred French and Indians, gathered what men he could and marched to Lancaster. After a severe fight in which the English displayed great gallantry, owing to the large number of the enemy, they were compelled to seek refuge in the garrison. In the engagement Captain Howe had two men killed- Abraham Hove and Benjamin Hutchins - and others ,wounded.

How ling the Indians had occupied their Planting Field before the place known to the white men is uncertain, but probably they had lived there for a long time. On the northern slope of the hill, opposite the farm of Mr. William Howe, they undoubtedly had a burial place.

Mr. Howe, presently the property owner of the hill, in excavating the earth in order to reset a wall, found a quantity of beads which had probably been buried with the wearer.  He also found bones, arrow heads, tomahawks and other articles that no doubt were once in possession of the Indians.

To be continued…………….

The following information is sourced from Ella Bigelow's book

It was the law that homesteads should cluster and each cluster should not be  more than half a mile from each other and that the Meeting House be located on an elevated location so as to be seen by the folks that lived in these homesteads.  This approach was an obvious tactic for protection from invading Indians.

Garrisons - As the town grew, many homesteads were now out of reach of the Meeting House, so Garrisons were assigned to various families for resort in time of danger.  The following Garrisons were assigned:

No. 1 - Capt. Howe's served the families of Samuel Stevens, James Howe, Jonathan Howe, Samuel Stowe and Jonathan Morse.

No. 2 - Mr. Breck's (near the now Public Library)

No. 3 - Capt. Kerly's (on the road to Southborough) served the families of Nathaniel Joslin, Joseph Maynard, Deacon Woods, Nathaniel Johnson, Thomas Amsden, Simon Gates and Joseph Johnson.

No. 4 - Capt. Brigham's (on the road to Southborough) served the families of Peter Plimpton and Benjamin Mixer.

No. 5 - Isaac Amden's (on the road to Southborough) served the families of Thomas Newton, Sergeant Maynard, James Woods, Adam Martin, Isaac Temple , Deacon Newton and John Amsden.

No. 6 - Isaac Howe's (on the road to Southborough) served the families of Moses Newton Jr. and James Cady.

No. 7 - Lieut. William's (near lake Williams) served the families of Thomas Beaman, Peter Bent, Richard Barnes and Edward Barnes.

No. 8 -  Ensign Howe's served the families of Ensign Bowker, Joseph Wait, David Church, Benjamin Rice, Peter Rice and Joseph Rice.

No. 9 - Samuel Morrell's (near Fort Meadow) served the families of Sergeant Barrett, John Barnes, Benjamin Bageley, Joseph Ward, Joshua Rice, Thomas Martin and Samuel Bush.

No. 10 - Thomas Brigham's served the families of Jonathan Brigham, Oliver Ward and Increase Ward.

No. 11 - John Howe's served the families of Zachariah Eager, Abrahm Eager, Daniel Johnson, Samuel Wheelock, Obadiah Ward and Thomas Axtell.

No. 12 - Samuel Goodnow's (near Stirrup Brook) served the families of Nathanial Oakes, Jonanthan Forbush and Gershom Fay.

No. 13 - Lieut. Howe's (north of Williams Pond) served the families of Thomas Ward and Edward Rice.

No. 14 - Nathan Brigham's served the families of  Joseph Stratton, Henry Bartlett and Alexander Stewart.

No. 15 -  Samuel Ward Sr.'s served the families of William Ward, Widow Hannah Ward, Jonathan Johnson Sr. and Caleb Rice.

No. 16 - John Matthew's (in what is now Southborough) served the families of William Johnson and Samuel Ward.

No. 17 - Daniel Rice's served the families of Widow Sarah Taylor, Supply Weeks and Eleazer Taylor.

No. 18 - Samuel Forbush's ( a mile north of the Old Common) served the families of James Bradish, Thomas Forbush and James Gleason.

No. 19 - Edmund Rice's (in now Westborough) served the families of David Brigham, Isaac Tomblin and David Maynard.

No. 20 - Thomas Rice's (in now Westborough) served the families of John Pratt and Charles Rice.

No. 21 - Thomas Hapgood's ( what was Indian Plantation in the easterly part of town) served the families of John Forbush, John wheeler, Josiah Howe, B. Carley Sr. and James Carley.

No. 22 - Mill's (near Hudson which was Feltonville) served the families of Thomas Barrett and John Banister.

No. 23 - Simon Maynard's what was Indian Plantation) served the families of Adam Holloway, Benjamin Whitney, Joseph Newton, John Keyes and Abiel Bush.

No. 24 - John Newton Jr.'s ( in now Southborough) served the families of Eleazer Bellows, James Eager, James Newton, Benjamin Newton., Ephraim Newton, John Woods and Abrahm Newton.

No. 25 - (in now Southborough) served the families of I. Woods, Thomas Witherbee, Isaac Amsden, Moses Leonard and Roger Bruce.

No. 26 - Joseph Morse's served the families of Thomas Bigelow, samuel Bigelow, Samuel Morse, John Bigelow, John Sherman and Daniel Harrington.


(Note: some do exist today 2002)

The writer of this information is unknown, the source appears to be Ella Bigelow's book
A blue dot will bring you to some additional info or a picture....YOUMUST USE YOUR BACK ARROW TO RETURN HERE

1. The first white settler, John Howe, who came from Sudn=bury in 1657, built and lived in a cabin located in a field east of Bolton Street and in due time opened the first public house in the place.>>>>>>>>

2. The first framed dwelling house was built in 1660 by John Ruddock; he was the first town clerk.  The house now standing at 184 Mechanic St. occupies the original site and contains some of the original frame work.

3. The first meeting house was built in 1663 near the site of the high school (now Walker Building) and was burned by Indians in 1676.  Rev. William Brimsmead was the first minister.>>>>>>

4. The first ministers house was built in 1662 not far from the meeting house on the southwest side of the Indian Planting field.

5. The first burying ground (now known as Springhill Cemetery) contains, besides other graves, those of Captain Hutchinson - 1675>>>>, Rev. William Brimsmead - 1701, Rev. Robert Breck - 1731>>>>>, and forty Revolutionary Soldiers.

6. The old church yard (now known as Old Common Cemetery) in the rear of the Walker building has been maintained since 1706>>>>

7. An Indian burial may be seen on Foredt St..

8. Another Indian burial place was on the north slope of Prospect Hill.

9. The "Wigwam Yards" on the old Bent farm, Forest Street, was a camping ground for Indians.

10. An old block house, built 1675, the home of William Ward, ancestor of General Artemas Ward, was located at the end of Hayden street.>>>>

11. The old pound may be seen on the south side of Union Street, adjacent to the Elmer D. Howe farm (pound is gone)

12. The first school was kept in Isaac Wood's house near 35 Maple Street, the first master being Benjamin Franklin, salary eight shillings per week.

13. The first school house was built on the ledge near Spring Hill Burying Ground in 1698.  Jonathan Johnson was master (School gone)

14. Gates Academy was founded in 1829 on High School site (now Walker Building).  Later it was used for the first high school and now is a dwelling house at 122 Washington Street.>>>>>

15. The first tannery was built by Captain Samuel Brigham about 1700 on the south side of the Boston Road, now 279 East Main Street.  It was the first tannnery west of Charlestown, Ma..

16.  The first shoe shop was opened in1835 on the corner of Bridge Street (gone) and Maple Street.  Joseph Boyed was the manufacturer. (factory gone)

17.  The Post Office was first established in 1799 in a residence, now 43 East Main Street; Joseph Brigham, Post Master.>>>>>

18. Williams Tavern was built 1665 near Lake williams where it now stands (gone)>>>>>

19. Howe Tavern was kept by John Howe Jr. prior to 1676 and later by his descendants, one of them was Colonel Cyprien Howe.  It was located on the Boston Road, two and one-half miles from City Hall (gone)

20. Sawin Tavern, early in the eighteenth century was managed by Munning Sawin and latrer by his son, General Bemjamin Sawin who was a delegate to the convention to ratify the Constitution of the United Srares in 1788.  It is still standing at 17 Sawin Street. (?)

21. Cotting Tavern at 46 Main St. was kept as a public house by Captain Thayer prior to 1824.  When John Cotting became proprietor, and the excellent dinners prepared by his wife familiarly known as "Aunt Sally" were famous for miles around.>>>>

22. Thayer Tavern 51 Main Street was built by Captain Thayer when he retired from the Cotting Tavernnn.  It is now owned and operated by Dr. D. C. L. Cutler. (gone)

23. The first bank building was constructed in 1867, the gift of Mark Fay and located at 50 Mechanic St.  It is now owned and occupied by the Marlboroug Society of Natural History and a museum is maintained there. (gone) >>>>>

24. The first Roman Catholic Church was built on Mount Pleasant Avenue off South Street. (gone)

25. The first Mass celebrated in town was celebrated on St. Patrick's Day 1851 in a rambling house known as the Arcade, located on the west side of South St..>>>>>> (scrolldown)

26.  In 1849 the first fire engine houses where built, one near the Brick store on Main Street, Sylvester F. Bucklin, captain of the company >>>>; the other on Pleasant street a little south of Lincoln Street.  The former engine was name Torrent 1. the latter Okommokamaset No. 2 Lewis T. Frye captain of No.2. >>>> (both gone)

27.  The Henry Barnes Mansion built by that noted "Tory"  in 1763, was located on the corner of Bolton and Main Streets.  Mr. Barns was driven from town in 1775,  for having harbored British spies.  The mansion was torn down to give place for a fire stationin 1909. (gone)

28. The Joseph Brigham - Ames House on Glen street was built about the year 1728 and has remaine in the family ever since.  Mis Martha Ames, the present owner, has an interesting collection of relics.>>>>

29. The Captain Dunton House on Northborough Road is one of the very old places.

30. Another house of note, on Lakeside Avenue, was occupied in the eighteenth century by Captain Ephraim Barber who aquired deserved fame by his skill in making "tall clocks".  Many of them excellent time keepers at the present day.>>>>

31. The old Peter Bent Homestead on Williams Street was one of the first farms assigned in the early settlement of the town and has remained in the Bent and Stevens families ever since with out change of deed.  >>>> (gone)

32. Richard Barnes came here in 1657 and settled south of the pond on Clover Hill Street and the homestead has been in the family for more than 250 years.>>>>>

33. The fine old house on the corner of Main and Pleasant Streets with it's sheltering elms of rare size and symmetry, now th e residence of it's owner Dr. Ralph Stevens, was built the year 1750.  Rev Aaron Smith occupied it in the early days.  Some lawless persons, beliving that he sympatheized with the tories, on July 29, 1777, fired twice into his lodging room.  One of the balls is kept as a relic in the house.>>> (Home replaced by St. Marys Credit Union)

34.  The Brigham - Howe Homestead located at the bend of Spring Street, has remained in the family since 1764.  The adjacent elm tree was planted in 1746. (?)

35. The Howe Homestead on Union Street, owned by E., D. Howe, has remained in the family with-out change of deed since it was ceded by the Indians. (house still stands)

36. The Stevens Homestead on Stevens street has descended from father to son in an unbroken line for six generations since it was deeded by the Indians in 1708 (gone, was on the bend of Stevens Street opposite the intersection of State St.)

37.  The David Goodale Homestead has remained in the family without change of deed since 1702.

38. The Ebenezer Hagar Place three miles from town on the Boston Road has remained in the family since it was built in 1730.

A time table

In 1660 the first tax was imposed for the purpose of paying Rev. William Brimsmead, the first Minister, and erecting him a house.  Contracts with early clergymen were drawn up typically giving them wages, a house, land and provisions so that they may spend all of their time teaching the ways of the Lord.

In 1662, the original Williams Tavern, (built at the corner of Williams St. and  Rt. 20 and now gone) was built by Lieutenant Abraham Wlliams for the purpose of "feeding man and beast.  In 1676 it was burned down by an Indian attack and one year later re-built and stood for the next 150 years.

In 1675 the population of Marlborough was only about 225.

August 10, 1676
A memorandum of Indian children put forth unto service to the English, Being of those Indians that came in and submitted with John Sachem of Pakchoog; with the names of the persons with whom they were placed, and the  names and age of the children, and the names of their relations, and the places they did belong to.

By Mr. Daniel Gookin senior, Thomas Prentis, Capt., and Mr. Edward Oakes, who were a committee appointed by the Council to manage ye affayr.  The termes and conditons upon which they are to serve is to be ordered by the General Court who are to provide ye the children bee religiously educated and taught to read the english tongue.

1. Boy. To Benjamin Mills of Dedham, a boy aged about six yeares named Joseph Spoonant late of Marlborow

May 1685 Benjamin Mills was ordered to appear at the Middlesex Court to answer for the fact that his Indian boy was not sufficiently clothes.

1668 The Meeting House was built 1668 - 1669 and stood only about 25 years, up to the year 1711.

In 1701 the town was fined five pounds, five shillings by the Justice Court in Cambridge for not having a school house.

In 1704  Mr. Breck was ordained at Marlborough.  The next day a man was killed and scalped by the Indians - he belonged to the town of Groton.  His name was Davis; a very useful man and much lamented."

April 8, 1706, The Old Common Burial Ground (behind the Walker Building) was established for a "Praying Place and a Burying Place forever" . At a meeting of the proprietors it was ordered, granted and concluded that the land exchanged with John Perry, the tailor, two and one-half acres, adjoining the meeting house land "shall be for a Praying Place and a Burying Place forwver."  The town wanted part of the land to build a meeting house upon and five years afterward, in 1711, they erected a meeting house on the spot where now stands the Walker Building.

In 1711 Marlborough's territory included Northborough, Southborough, Westborough and Hudson.

In 1757, the first school building built exclusively for girls was for a spinning school; it cost $15,000.00 and was supported by a tax on coaches and carriages.  It was 150 years after the first school for boys was opened before girls were allowed to attend any public school and then only an hour in the morning or at night when the boys were at home and on holidays.  It was 190 years before they had the same school privileges as the boys.

March 19, 1761, an earthquake occurred; a second one occurred on November 1 of the same year. Remarkable winds and on September 30 dandelions were in full bloom.

May 2, 1764 Ensign Daniel Bartlett died in the west part of Marlborough, age 73 years.  His 12 childrendistributed at his funeral 19 pairs of black gloves, 18 pairs of white gloves, 12 black gauze handkerchiefs and other articles, all costing 75 pounds and 7 shillings.

March 29, 1770 The town passed a spirited resolution endorsing the non-importing agreement.

June 24, 1772, the first stage coach between Boston and New York commenced running through Marlborough.  It was a fortnight between the two places.  It passed through this town on it's way to worcester.

In 1772, the Social Library was instituted  and incorporated with the Free Library of the First Parish in 1828.

April 10, 1775 The town of marlborough voted to give the minute men on shilling and fourpence for training an hour every week in this month and in May, except they were called for to enter the service.This was nine days before the Concord and Lexington Battles.  When the intelligence reached Marlborough that the British troops had arrived at Concord April 19, 1775, four Marlborough Companies, numbering about 190 men or one-seventhh of the population, rushed to arms, marched against the enemy and remained at Cambridge until a regular army was orgamized.  During the whole war, marlborough was well represented in the Army of freedomm by a roll of honorable men.

1775 Dysentery prevailed alarmingly.  This was the most destructive epidemic in the thown's history.

October 16,1778 the "Black List" was released and a Marlborough citizen, "Henry Barnes", was listed.  This list contained the names of those people who swore their allegiance to the King.  This list of the most notorious people dictated that they be arrested and transported from Massachusetts as their first offense.  If they were found again in Massachusetts, they were to be executed.

In 1799, the Marlborough Post Office was established.

1780 The winter was remarkable for it's severity and the depth of the snow.  Hay was scarce and cattle were aloowed to browse feed. The bodies of those who died were drawn several miles to burial on snow shoes, the roads being blocked by snow.  May 19 was called the "dark day' when candles were lit from 10 to 11 O'clock and fowels retired to rest.  It was so dark in town that it was said some persons lost their wasy.

October 23, 1789, President George Washington, while on his way to Boston, took dinner and brew at the Williams tavern.

February 24, 1804, the snow was four and one half feet deep.

February 1805 Died in marlborough, Mrs. Ann Quincy, age 80 years, widow of Joshiah 2d and mother of Mrs. Nacy Packard, who died 1844 in Lancaster, 80 years of age.

March 24, 1815 The "tithing"en of Marlborough gave notice in the Worcester Spy that they should discharge their duties of the office, "commencing next month".  Marlborough ususally selected from two to eight annually; in 1699 Deacon John Barnes Sr. and James Taylor Sr. and in 1818 the last "tithing" men in Marlborough were chosen.

A Tithing Man: Tithing-men should be appointed annually; chosen of the most prudent & discreet inhabitants to inspect all houses and their inhabitants for disorderly persons, stubborne children and servants, night-walkers, Sabbath-breakers, and those whose conduct tended toward debauchery, irreligion, prophaness, & atheisme.

In 1837 a census of manufacturers in Marlborough was taken by the order of the Legislature to determine product production.  The results were:

Shoes manufactured 103,000 pairs valued at $41,200.00;  people employed, 75 males and 75 females.
Tanneries, there were two, hides tanned 2,600 valued at $11,500.00; people employed 7.
Chairs and cabinets manufactured valued at $1,000.00; people employed 4.
Straw bonnets manufactured 7,500 valued at $10,850.00

In 1840, at the close the population of Marlborough reached 2,092.

In 1840, the old Town Hall was built. Previously, John Cotting Hall was used for town meetings.  The town hall was built by David Brown and Eldridge Howe.  Important alterations where made in 1857

In 1845 a second census of manufacturing in Marlborough showed the following results:

Boots manufactured, 624 pairs and shoes manufactured 302,725 pairs valued at $92,932.00; people employed 158 males, 220 females

The Odd Felowship made it's appearance.  Members of the town joining the order were Edward Gay, Samuel Chapman, Jonathan Rice 2d, Leander Bigelow and D. J. Mandell.

August 25, 1846, an earthquake of a magnitude of 4.55 in the morning that lasted 10 seconds.

April 12, 1851 The East Meeting House bell tolled 75 times because Thomas Sims, a colored person, was taken back to Georgia from Boston as a slave.  It was 75 years since Independence had been declared.

April 30, 1852, the Marlborough Branch R. R. Co. from Marlborough to Feltonville was incorporated. Incorporators were Mark Fay, Lambert Bigelow and Richard Farwell

November 10, 1852, the Spring Hill Church was burned.

May 4, 1853, the Fire Department was established.

August 24, 1853, the dedication of a third Meeting House on Spring Hill occurred.

August 26, 1853 A comet waas seen in a northwesterly direction, it's train was visible to the naked eye.

October 19, 1853 the dedication of the new Methodist Church occurred.

December of 1853, The Marlborough Mechanics Institute was organized.

August 7, 1855 Dedication of the Cathplic church on the north-east side of Mount Pleasant.

December 1, 1855, The Agricultural Branch R. R. opened to Northborough.

1857 The first house on Broad St. was built. Owner Oierre Bouley and was built by his father Antoine Bouley.  Pierre Bpuley lived there and brought up a family  of 20 children.

In 1859, the Marlborough Mirror started publication.

June 27, 1860 The old Academy was sold a autctionn to George N. Cate for $400.00 and in the same month Jewell & Shaw of Roxbury contracted to build the new High School for $6, 875.00.  The igh School was dedicated on December 15, 1860.

December of 1860, The Marlborough Journal, a monthly paper,  was first issued.

March 26, 1861 Lyman Howe died at Wayside Inn, Sudbury.  He was the 5th generation  that kept the Howe Tavern.

June 11, 1861, the first men of Marlborough to muster into the United States service with the 6th Massachusetts Infantry Co. G as part of the 9th Massachusetts Infantry occurred.

April 11, 1865 sorrow in Marlborough, President Lincoln assassinated.

March 19, 1866 The northern part of Marlborough including three schoold districts and parts of two other school districts, then the village of Feltonville, was incorporated as the Town of Hudson.

March 19, 1866, the Northern Part of Marlborough including three school districts and parts of two other districts (Feltonville) was incorporated as the Town of Hudson.

February 28, 1866, the dedication of the new Universalist Church occurred.

In 1866, the Church of the Immaculate Conception on Prospect Street was erected. On June 16, 1868 the corner stone was laid by Right Rev. John J. Williams, Bisop of Boston.  Some years later the bell blessed by Archbishop Williams was christened "Petrus" in honor of the Pastor Rev. P. A. McKenna, by vote of the parish.  Michael Wall, by virtue of being the leading contributor towards the bell, struck the first tap.

June 2, 1869, the dedication of the Soldiers Monument with an oration on Old Common by Dr. George B. Loring.

In 1869, the new Town Hall was built in at a cost  of $87,000.00.

In 1870, St. Mary's Parish was established.

August 5, 1872 The Japenese Embassy visited Marlborough.  They visited Boyd & Corey's shoe factory and saw the process used in the manufacturing of boots and shoes.

January 3, 1873 The large block on the corner of Lincoln and Broad streets burned.

June 1, 1874 The eagle which crowned the Soldiers Monument fell to the ground and was destroyed; weighed 600 pounds.  A new eagle was placed the following September.

March 26, 1876 Sunday, the 200th anniversary of the burning of Marlborough by the Indians was commemorated.  The historical address was given by S. B. Pratt publisher if the Marlborough mirror.

May 10, 1876  Historical and Antiquarian Society  organized in Marlborough.  dr. Edward Barnes chosen as president.

October 1876 Donation to the town by E. L. Bigelow of a granite watering trough; it was located at the southwest corner of the High School common, the first public one in town

July of 1877, the Coolidge  Shoe Factory burned, five months later a new and bigger one was erected.

January 1, 1878, the Marlborough Advertiser was established.

July 2, 1881, sorrow again in Marlborough, President Garfield assassinated.

June 29, 1883 Water turned on from the Public Works Department.  The supply of water came from lake Williams and Millham reservoir

November 16, 1887, the fire alarm telegraph system was introduced.

July 2, 1888, hail stones as large as walnuts fell covering the land to three inches.

December 1885, electric lights first turned on.

July 1, 1887, free postal delivery began.

July 2, 1888 The kids were sleighing in Marlborough.  The ground was covered with three inches of hailstones as large as walnuts.  Acres of crops ruined.

January 1, 1889, horses were used for the first time in the Fire Department.

In 1889, the Electric Street Trolley started operation. June 19th, the line being 2.1154 miles in lenght.  Superintendent Herbert E. Bradford was in charge.  First Board of Directors; Samuel Boyd, president; Samuel C. Darling, treasurer; Stillman B. Pratt, Edward R. Alley, Timothy A. Coolidge, James T. Murphy, Alba C. Weeks.   Richmond Virginia disputes the honor of the first electric railway being operated i Marlborough, but Marlborough's clainm is now generally recognized and accepted.

February 27, 1890, The Marlborough City Hospital was incorporated;  in 1891 the Sylvester Bucklin House was purchased  for the Institution and was opened to the public in 1893

July 14, 1890, Marlborough becomes the 28th city on the States Family list.

In 1890, the first City election occurred, Mr. Simon Herbet Howe was elected Mayor

January 5, 1891, Marlborough inaugurates it's first Mayor

In 1891, City sewerage was first introduced at a cost of $341,247.00.

In 1892, the GAR, Grande Army of the Republic, building was erected; the Warren block was erected.

In 1892 the John Brown Bell captured at Harpers Ferry, was brought to Marlborough and hung above the entrance to the Grand Army Building (now gone) and later to be removed to it's present location.

In 1893, the Frye Building on Mechanic Street and Lincoln Street was erected; the Marlborough Hospital opens on Hildreth Street and the Boston and Main Railroad Depot on the corner of Mechanic and Lincoln Street was dedicated.

In 1894, the Marlborough Hospital closes.

In 1895, the Pleasant St. Fire Station N0.2 was erected at a cost of $17,000.00

September 15, 1895, The Christian Science Society was organized.

In 1896, the building that housed "Boys College" was erected at a cost of $27, 000.00; the Marlborough Trotting Park  on Maple Street opens for business; the Marlborough "dump" opened on the corner of Bolton Street and Hudson Street.

September 10, 1898, the new Marlborough High School Building was opened and dedicated.

In 1898, the Marlborough Steamer auto factory starts production.

In 1899, the First Baptist Church was built and dedicated; the Corey Block on Main Street was erected.

September 13, 1901, sadness again when President McKinley was assassinated.

December 17, 1901, three shock waves from an earth quake were felt.

December 25, 1902, the worst fire in Marlborough occurred on that  night when the Town Hall a brick building burned and was leveled.  This building contained the Public Library and 30,000 volumes many of which were rare.  Many valuable records were lost.

In 1902, the New York, New Haven and Hartford RR depot was erected on the corner of Main Street and Florence Streets; the Rice and Hutchins Shoe Factory was built.

In 1903, the first movie pictures were shown at the Marlborough Theater on Main Street.

In 1904, after being closed for nearly ten years, the Marlborough Hospital re-opens.

In 1906, the Armory on Lincoln street is dedicated.

June 12, 1907, the City Council sets down the "Conditions of Competition" for the design and building of the Combination Fire and Police Station.  Cost not to exceed $32,000.00.

In 1907, Fairmont Park opens.

In 1909, the Central Fire Station which housed the Police and Court was erected at a cost of $55,000.00 and was dedicated August 7, 1909.

In 1910, the Five and Dime store opens on Main Street, the City has it's 250th Anniversary Celebration.

Back to Contents