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Vital Records of Bradford, Massachusetts to the Year 1850

Published by the Topsfield Historical Society
Topsfield, Mass.


Newcomb & Gauss Printers
Salem, Massachusetts

 The following records of births, marriages, and deaths, include all entries to be found, in the books of record kept by the town clerks (no records of intentions of marriage before 1850 are preserved in the custody of the Haverhill city clerk, nor has extended search brought them to light in private hands) ; in the church records (which are very imperfect) ; in the returns made to the Salem Quarterly Court; in the cemetery inscriptions; and in private records found in family Bibles, etc. These records are printed in a condensed form in which every essential particular has been preserved. All duplication of the town clerks' record has been eliminated, but differences in entry and other explanatory matter appear in brackets. Parentheses are used when they occur in the original record; also to show the difference in the spelling of a name in the same entry; and to indicate the maiden name of a married woman.
 When places other than Bradford and Massachusetts are named in the original records, they are given in the printed copy. Marriages are printed under the names of both parties. Double
dating is usual in the months of January, February, and March, prior to 1752, whenever it appears in the original and also, whenever from the sequence of entry in the original the date may be easily determined. In all records the original spelling of names is followed, and in the alphabetical arrangement the various forms should be examined, as items about the same family may be found under different spellings.

 The territory included within the limits of Bradford was originally a part of Rowley and was first known as " Merrimac Lands," and " Rowley Village by the Merrimack," and then as " Merrimack," which name was changed to Bradford at a town meeting held Jan. 7, 1672, in memory of Bradford in the West Riding of Yorkshire, England, several of the settlers having emigrated from that place.
 At a session of the General Court held May 27, 1668, it was recorded: " In ansr to the petition of the inhabitants of Rouley liuing ouer against Hauerill, the Court, hauing considered the peticon, pervsed the towne of Rouleys grant to the petitioners, heard Rouley deputy, and also considering a writing sent from Rouley, wth what els hath been presented in the case, doe finde that there is liberty granted the petitioners by the towne of Rouley to prouide themselues of a minister, & also an intent to release them from their towneship when they are accordingly prouided, and therefore see not but this Court may grant their petition to
be a towneship, provided they doe gett & setle an able & Orthodox minister, & continue to majntejne him, or els to remaine to Rouley as formerly."
 The first town meeting was held in 1668, the "orthodox minister," Rev. Zechariah Symmes, of Charlestown, already having been secured. The meeting house was erected in 1670. The
town first paid a colonial tax on October 13, 1675.  On March 8, 1850, part of its territory was set off and incorporated as the town of Groveland.
 On January 4, 1897, the town of Bradford was annexed to the
city of Haverhill.

The population of Bradford at different periods was as follows:
  1765, 1125. 1800, 1420. 1840, 2222.
  1776, 1240. 1810, 1360. 1850, 1328.
  1790. 1371. 1820, 1600. 1895, 4736.
              1830, 1856.


C. R. 1.-church record, Bradford First Congregational Church.
C. R. 2.-church record, Bradford Second Congregational Church  at East Bradford, afterwards Groveland.
CT. F.-court files, Essex Co. Quarterly Court.
CT. R.-court record, Essex Co. Quarterly Court.
d.-daughter; day.
G. R. 1.-gravestone record, Ancient Burying Ground, Bradford.
G. R. 2.-gravestone record, Ancient Burying Ground at East Bradford, afterwards Groveland.
G. R. 3.-gravestone record, Burial Place of the small pox victims, at East Bradfords, afterwards, Groveland.
h.-husband; hour.
int.-intention of marriage.
m.-male; married; month.
Maj.-Major.P. R. 1.-Private record kept by [Miss Priscilla Parker? continued by] Mrs. Atwood, now in possession of William B. Ladd.
P. R. 2.-Death book kept by and now in possession of William B. Ladd.
P. R. 3.-Family record, now in possession of Miss Sarah Balch of Groveland.
P. R. 4.-Bible record now in possession of Miss Lois P. Atwood of Groveland.
P. R. 5.-Bible record now in possession of Mrs. Charles Wallingford of Groveland.
P. R. 6.-Records now in possession of Harrison E. Chadwick.
P. R. 7.-Bible record now in possession of Miss Sarah P. Cogswell.
P. R. 8.-Family record now in possession of Miss Priscilk H. Kimball.
P. R. 9.-Bible records now in possession of William B. Ladd of Groveland.
P. R. 10.-Family record now in possession of Mrs. Betsey (Greenleaf) Kendall.
P. R. 11.-Bible records now in possession of Miss Cornelia Hardy of Groveland.
P. R. 12.-Family record now in possession of Mrs. Charles Herbert Poor.
P. R. 13.-Bible record now in possession of Samuel W. Hopkinson.
P. R. 14.-Bible record now in possession of Miss Sarah Balch of Groveland.
P. R. 15.-Sampler now in possession of Miss Sarah Balch of Groveland.
P. R. 16.-Family record now in possession of Miss Isabella G. Downie.
P. R. 17.-Bible record now in possession of Miss Priscilla Parker of Groveland.
P. R. 18.-Family record now in possession of Miss Priscilla Parker of Groveland.
P. R. 19.-Family record now in possession of Miss Cornelia Hardy of Groveland.
P. R. 20.-Family record now in possession of Charles Tenny.
P. R. 21.-Family record now in possession of Mrs. Daniel Kimball.
P. R. 22.-Bible record now in possession of Mrs. Walter Hopkinson of Groveland.
P. R. 23.-Marriages recorded by Rev. Mathias Plant in the church record of Queen Anne's Chapel, Newburyport.
P. R. 24.-Diary of Rev. Mathias Plant now in possession of St.
 Paul's church, Newburyport.
P. R. 25.-Record now in possession of Dr. L. A. Wbodbury of
P. R. 26.-Ancient paper now in possession of Miss Priscilla Par-
 ker of Groveland.
w.-wife; week.

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