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CHAPTER IV.

PROPRIETORS’ MEETINGS, 1786–1845.

    During a period of more than four years, the proprietary makes no records for the clerk, George Harris, to record as would appear from the absence of the least scratch of a pen or the leaving of any space in the record book which might be filled up afterwards. On the contrary, the last four years which are blank on all town records, were full of happenings, perhaps so much occurred that the clerk of the proprietors as well as the town clerk, had not the courage to narrate events. Canaan was in the secession movement to join Vermont, so anxious were the other fifteen towns to belong to the sovereignty across the Connecticut River, that all the town, as well as proprietary officers, neglected their duty. The proprietors awoke at last to find themselves in debt, and George Harris, the owner of ten rights, Joshua Harris, the owner of one right, John Harris, the owner of one right, Ezekiel Wells, the owner of five rights, and William Richardson, the owner of one right, and owners of more than one-sixteenth part of the rights of land in town, requested the clerk to call a meeting at Maj. Samuel Jones’ on the 27th day of June, 1786. They -voted to raise one shilling and six pence on each hundred acres of upland to defray the cost of running the lines between Canaan and Enfield; John Scofield, the son of our first settler (the old settler is now dead two years), is appointed collector and to pay the money over to the selectmen of the town. This debt is the result of a meeting back in 1781, and five years after they are ready to pay the bill. Samuel Jones, Ezekiel Wells and Joshua Harris were appointed “Assessors.” Another meeting is held in December to lay a tax on the “wild lands,” for the purpose of “making & repairing the Rodes.” Daniel Blaisdell is chosen collector to collect the tax of sixty pounds, as well as the balance of the previous tax of one shilling and six pence on each right, which John Scofield did not collect, “made in order to defray the charge of settling the lines in sd Town between Canaan & Enfield.”

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