VITAL RECORDS OF TOPSFIELD MASSACHUSETTS TO THE YEAR 1850
PUBLISHED BY THE
TOPSFIELD HISTORICAL SOCIETY
NEWCOMB & GAUSS
THE following records of births, marriages and deaths include
all entries to be found in the books of record kept by the town
clerks; the church records now in the custody of the town clerk;
the returns made to the Salem Quarterly Court; cemetery in-
scriptions ; and a private record of deaths, covering the period of
1790-1853, now in the possession of Mrs. George Warren
Towne, of Danvers, Mass. These records are printed in a con-
densed form in which every essential particular has been re-
tained. All duplication of the town clerk's record has been
eliminated, but differences in entry and other explanatory
matter appear in brackets. Parentheses are used only when
they occur in the original record, usually enclosing the maiden
name of a wife.
When places other than Topsfield and Massachusetts
named in the original records, they are given in the printed
copy. Marriages and intentions of marriage are printed under
the names of both parties. Double-dating is used 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
GEORGE FRANCIS Dow, Compiler.
The Indian name for this locality was " Shenewemedy," but
the first settlers applied the name of " New Meadows " to the
grant of land which was made by the General Court, Nov. 5,
1639, to inhabitants of Salem and Ipswich. Oct. 18, 1648, the
Court voted,-" The village at the newe medowes at Ipswich is
named Toppesfeild." Oct. 18, 1650, it was established as a
Oct. 19, 1658, and May 29, 1664, bounds between Salem and
Topsfield were established.
May 5, 1682, bounds between Wenham and Topsfield were
April 28, 1684 and May 31, 1697, bounds between Ipswich
and Topsfield were established.
Feb. 25, 1701 and June 17, 1731, bounds between Boxford
and Topsfield were established.
June 20, 1728, part of the territory was included in the new
town of Middleton.
Feb. 16, 1774, part of the town of Ipswich, lying on the south
side of the river, was annexed to Topsfield.
The population of Topsfield at different periods was as follows :
1765. 719 ; T776, 773 ; 1790 780 ; 1800, 789 ; 1810, 815 ; 1820,
86651830, 1010; 1840, 1059; 1850, 1170; 1900, 1030.
a. - age.
abt. - about.
b. - born.
bef. - before.
bp. - baptized.
C. R. - church record.
ch. - child.
Co. - county.
CT. R. - court record, Essex Co. Quarterly Court.
d. - daughter ; day; died.
Dea. - deacon.
G. R. 1. - gravestone record, Pine Grove Cemetery.
G. R. 2, - gravestone record, South Side Cemetery.
h. - husband.
inf. - infant.
int. - intention of marriage.
m. - male; married; month.
P. R. 1. - private record of deaths, 1790-1853, now in
the possession of Mrs. George Warren Towne.
P. R. 2. - Henry Lake's account book, now in the
possession of George Francis Dow.
s. - son.
sr. - senior.
unm. - unmarried.
w. - wife.
mid. - widow.
widr. - widower.
y. - year.