Historical Sketch of Brighton, MA
Source at bottom of page.



Historical Sketches
Franklin County
Hampden County
Hampshire County
Middlesex County
Norfolk County
Worcester County

New York


History at
Rays Place

Also see [ Railway
Officials in America


BRIGHTON. was formerly a part of Cambridge, and known by the name of Little Cambridge. It was incorporated in 1807. The town contains several beautiful country seats and highly cultivated farms, 2 Congregational churches, 1 of which is Unitarian. and a bank, the “Brighton Bank,” with a capital of $200,000. Population, 1,337. It is 16 miles S. E. from Concord, 35 E. of Worcester, S northerly from Dedham, and 5 W. of Boston.

A cattle fair was commenced here during the revolutionary war, and has been increasing in importance ever since. Most of the cattle for the supply of Boston market are brought in droves to this place, from two hundred to six thousand a week: every Monday is the fair, or market day, when the dealers in provisions resort thither to make purchases.

The above is a western view of the central part of Brighton, showing the place where the great cattle-market of New England is held. The street at this time is filled with cattle of various kinds, and with buyers and sellers. Large droves of cattle are driven from Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont to this market. Besides furnishing the Boston market, great numbers of cattle are collected, bought and slaughtered, and barreled up for exportation to various places. In the engraving the large building appearing on the left is the "Cattle Fair Hotel:" at times as many as 400 or 500 persons have been known to dine at this establishment on market days. The Unitarian church is the next building eastward; the Brighton Bank is seen on the opposite side of the street. A reporter attends the market, and his reports of the prices, &c., are published in the newspapers. "Winship's Gardens," celebrated for their great variety of shrubs and flowers, are about half a mile north of the Cattle Fair Hotel. The Worcester railroad passes through the northern part of these gardens.

The following statement of Brighton market for 1837 and 1838 is from the public prints, in 1837, 32,664 beef cattle, 16,216 stores, 110,206 sheep, 17,052 swine; total sales estimated at $2,449,231. In 1838, 25,850 beef cattle, sales estimated at $1,317,330; 9,573 stores, sales $315,909; 104,640 sheep, sales $261,600; 26,164 swine, sales $163,165-total sales estimated at $2,058,004.

Historical Collections Relating to the
History and Antiquities of
Every town in Massachusetts with
Geographical Descriptions.
By John Warner Barber.
Published by Warren Lazell.


All pages copyright 2009. All items on this site are copyrighted by their author(s). These pages may be linked to but not used on another web site. Anyone may copy and use the information provided here freely for personal use only. Privacy Policy