Vital Records of Marlborough, Massachusetts to the Year
Published by Franklin P. Rice,Trustee of the Fund.
Owing to a misunderstanding the edition was found to be short one hundred copies,
and that number has been reprinted.
F.M. Gilson Company
Foreword to the Marlborough Vital Records: A Retrospect.
The printing of the Vital Records, the Burial Ground Inscriptions, and the Proprietors'
Records of Marlborough is a realization in small part of a plan formed in 1885 to
copy and print the records of several of the old Massachusetts Towns in the pathway
of the westward emi- gration from the coast from 1635 to 1660. Some of the details
of this plan were discussed at length in certain quarters, and with competent authorities,
but I received little encouragement to proceed in an undertaking which seemed to
the majority of those gentlemen to be attended with insurmountable difficulties.
I gratefully remember, however, that there were two or three who took the opposite
view, and who offered
assistance. Four of the towns contemplated in the project were Watertown, Concord,
Sudbury and Marlborough, and I felt assured that even the announcement of the beginning
of work in these important places would give an impetus to record publication in
other parts of the State,which was then my principal object.
During the next three years the enterprise was under consideration, but various
other interests interposed to delay it, and before arrangements could be perfected
I unexpectedly found myself involved in the undertaking of printing the second series
of the Worcester Records,
from which, in consequence of certain unforeseen and singular difficulties, I was
not wholly freed until 1898. During the period 1876-1882 I had completed the Worcester
Records to 1783, including the Proprietors' Book, and also the Records of the Worcester
County Court of General Sessions from 1731 to 1737, the latter being, I believe,
the first example of printed county records in Massachusetts.
Considerable activity in record work was manifested in various places in the State
from 1880 to 1890, mostly through individual effort. Dr. Samuel A. Green began the
publication of the Groton Records in 1880, and Mr. Henry S. Nourse prepared three
volumes of Lancaster Records in 1884 and later. The most notable instance during
this period was the printing of the Dedham Records in six volumes under the supervision
of Don Gleason Hill, Esq. A little later, efforts of this kind began to multiply.
Probably the first in Massachusetts, consecutively
exerted, was that of printing the Brookline (Muddy River) Records, the first volume
appearing in 1874, the others not until 1889. In 1890 I was glad to be informed
by Mr. C. A. Stearns that the Watertown Historical Society was about to begin the
printing of the local records with the aid of appropriations by the town. About
this time I made a verbal proposition to Mr. George Tolman of Concord to print the
records of that town upon my own responsibility, if he would furnish the copy, and
this offer seemed to strike him favorably.
Shortly after, meeting Mr. Francis E. Blake of Boston, who has always been, during
my thirty years' acquaintance with him, a ready and potent force in record work,
I mentioned this circumstance, and he offered to assume one-fourth of the expense.
Thus reinforced, I renewed my proposition in writing, to which Mr. Tolman replied
that he would, before giving his decision, make an attempt to induce the town at
its annual meeting to appropriate a sum to enable the Concord Antiquarian Society
to carry forward the undertaking. In this effort he was successful, so far as the
printing of the vital records of the town was concerned, and his book is one of
the best prepared under the old method, while his incomparable index modifies in
some degree the evils of that system.
Mr. Tolman wrote that he desired to follow the scientific plan in the printing of
records of this class, and avoid the confusing use of an index, but probably he
was overruled. For several years I was not able to give further consideration to
this locality, my efforts in reorganizing the record work under the Systematic History
Fund being confined to towns in Worcester County. The burning of the city building
in Marlborough in 1902, and the narrow escape of the records from destruction, caused
my thoughts to turn again in that direction, and I was urged by friends in the New
England Historic Genealogical Society and by others to undertake the work
of copying and printing the vital records of Marlborough at once. I was
obliged, however, to await the completion of the new city hall before a suitable
place for copying the records could be provided, and it was not until the fall of
1906 that this task was begun. In the meantime I secured copies of the church records
and of the gravestone inscriptions. The Vital Records of Sudbury were published
in 1903 by the New
England Historic Genealogical Society, at the charge of the Eddy Town-Record Fund.
I had a deeper interest in Marlborough than in any other place in Massachusetts.
It was the parent town not only of the settlements in a large adjacent territory,
but of others more remote, and its records have a particular value in connection
with the first history of all these.
It was my native town, and had it not been for the difficulty in securing the copy
of its records at that period, I should probably have put forth my efforts there
instead of in Worcester, and made it the first example of a town with all its records
in print. I made an examination of the
manuscript volumes in 1883 with a strong inclination to engage in the work of printing,
but I was then overtasked. I experienced peculiar satisfaction in being able to
make even a beginning at a late date.
It was in Marlborough that I first thought of making use of type to enable me to
produce copies in number of certain historical data from original materials which
I had collected. Acting under the impulse I procured a small press and type enough
to set an octavo page, and thus unknowingly acquired a power, which, as later developments
have shown, has proved effective in carrying out the various enterprises in which
I have engaged, as otherwise they must have failed of accomplishment through lack
of pecuniary means and in the face of the discouragements and other obstacles encountered.
This was in March, 1871, and, soon after, I returned to Worcester, and for the next
two or three years other interests prevailed, but what at a later period became
my main object was kept in mind. Facility in the use of type came slowly, for I
never received an hour's instruction in a printing office, and have always followed
my own methods. It is, perhaps, remarkable that I have many times been solicited
to print books for others at high prices. A few of these offers I have accepted
that I might be able to patch over financial bare spots in the record work.
I hope sometime to give in detail an account of the various undertakings in the
line of record preservation with which I have been connected since I began, in the
early seventies, with the idea, crude and imperfect, of subjecting to classification
for easy reference manuscript materials in public depositories, many of which were
then hidden or unknown, and in many places practically inaccessible; but only a
brief summary can be given here. Thirty-five years ago the interest in such matters
was mainly antiquarian, and the few examples in print in this
line had been inspired from that standpoint. Genealogical research was not then
the powerful factor it is to-day. As the idea expanded and developed I came to regard
the work chiefly in its practical and scientific aspects, and I applied the term
Systematic History as best explaining its purpose to meet the necessities of all
inquirers and investigators.
My fortunate meeting with Mr. Samuel E. Staples in 1869 resulted in the formation
of The Worcester Society of Antiquity five years later. The Worcester Records in
eight volumes were published by that Society, some financial aid being given by
the city. In 1882-3 considerable work was done at the State House with the intention
of including certain early archives of the Commonwealth in the printed Collections
of the Society, but this project encountered remonstrances of such a nature that
I abandoned it, as, for other reasons, I did the one to print the County Probate
and Land Records in 1891. The purpose in these propositions was to have the Society
maintain its place as the leader in the record work.
I formulated a plan sometime before 1890 to require the towns in Massachusetts to
print their records, but this met with little favor. Its substantial features are
embodied in the Act of 1902.
The formation of The Massachusetts Record Society in 1891 was an abortive attempt
to reorganize the record work upon a practical basis. Considerable was, however,
accomplished, in western Massachusetts and in New Hampshire; the results in the
latter locality were turned over to the State Board of Vital Statistics at Concord.
Pursuing the work since 1898 under the operation of the Systematic History Fund,
I have been able to secure copies and to print the vital records of more than thirty
towns in central Massachusetts.
Franklin P. Rice
Worcester, April, 1908.
The list of Marlborough Births, Marriages and Deaths comprised in this volume includes
all that were found in the Town Books covering the period from the earliest date
there recorded to the end of the year 1849. Some additions have been made from other
sources, and these are indicated in each instance by proper reference.
All of the records are condensed in print as much as is consistent with intelligibility,
accuracy, and completeness of information. Differences in duplicates, and explanatory
or other matter which seemed necessary or desirable, appear in brackets. Marriages
and intentions of marriage are printed under the names of both parties, but the
full information concerning each
person is given only under his or her name. No intentions of marriage previous to
1844 were found in the Marlborough records; in entries after that date an asterisk
indicates that the
intention was not found recorded, and in many cases this is accounted for by the
fact that neither party belonged in Marlborough, and consequently publishment was
The double date is used in the months of January, February and March prior to 1752
only when it so appears in the original, and instances of the modern form after
1725 are not uncommon. When places other than Marlborough and Massachusetts are
named in the original records, they are given in the printed copy. The Vital Records
of Marlborough were copied and prepared for the press by Miss Mary E. Spalding,
a. - age
b. - born
bap. - baptized
ch. - child
C.R.1. - church record, First Church
c.R.2.-church record, Second (West,Unitarian) Church
d. - daughter; day; died
Dea. - deacon
D.M. - District of Maine
dup. - duplicate entry
G.S.1. - gravestone, Spring Hill Cemetery
G.S.2. - gravestone, High School or Old Common Cemetery
G.S.3. - gravestone, Chipman Cemetery
G.S.4. - gravestone, Brigham Cemetery
G.S.5. - gravestone, Farms Cemetery
h. - husband
inf. - infant
int. - publishment of intention of marriage
Jr. - junior
m. - male; married; month
M.R. - Middlesex County Registry
N.S. - new style
O.S. - old style
P.R. - private record
s. - son
Sr. - senior
V.R. - Vital Records
w. - A. H. Ward record. N. E. Hist, and Gen. Soc.
w. - wife
wid. - widow
widr. - widower
The age given in the Deaths is in years unless otherwise indicated.
Marlborough, Middlesex County.
On May 31, 1660, the grant to the Whip-suffrage planters was confirmed, the name
of the plantation to be " Marlborow." Certain lands were granted to Marlborough
July 2, 1700, and Nov. 16, 1716, the title of a tract of land called " Agaganquamasset"
was confirmed. The part called " Chauncy " was established as Westborough (now in
Worcester County) Nov. 18,
1717, and a part was established at Southborough (now in Worcester County) July
6, 1727. A part was included in the District of Berlin (Worcester County)
March 16, 1784. A part of Framingham was annexed
Feb. 23, 1791. A part was annexed to Northborough (Worcester County) and the boundary
June 20, 1807. A part was annexed to Bolton (Worcester County) Feb. 11, 1829. A
part of Southborough was annexed March 24, 1843.
Population at different periods: 1765, 1,287 ; 1776,
1,554; 1790, 1,554; 1800, 1,735; 1810, 1674 ; 1820,
1,952; 1830, 2,077; 1840, 2,101; 1850, 2,941.
Population in 1905, 14,073.
Number of Births printed .............. 7,598
1926 = 3,852 names
Deaths. ............................... 2,256