Historical Sketch of Framingham, MA
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FRAMINGHAM was incorporated as a town in 1700. In this year it was by the general court “ordered that said plantation, called Framingham, be henceforth a township retaining the name of Framingham, and have and enjoy all the priviledges of a town according to law. Saving unto Sherbon all the rights of land granted by the general court to the first inhabitants, and those since purchased by exchange with the Indians of Natick, or otherwise, all the farms lying within said township according to the former grants of this general court.” On the same day this grant was made by the legislature, a petition, by mutual concert, was made for a large tract of land north east of said plantation, termed Sudbury Farms, to be annexed to the new township, which was readily granted. The first minister of the place was Rev. John Swift, who was ordained Oct., 1701, and died in 1745, aged 67. The church at the time of its organization consisted of the following members:

Henry Rice,
Daniel Rice, Deac.
Jona. Hemingway, do....
Thomas Drury,
Thomas Walker,
John Stow,
Simon Mellen,
Peter Cloise,
Benjamin Bridges,

Caleb Bridges,
Thomas Mellen,
Benjamin Nurse,
Samuel Winch,
Thomas Frost,
John Haven,
Isaac Bowen,
Stephen Jennings,
Nathaniel Haven.

This village is about half way from Boston to Worcester, being 21 miles from the former and 20 miles from the latter place. The village consists of about 60 dwelling houses, 4 churches, 2 Congregational, one of which is Unitarian, 1 Baptist, and 1 Universalist. Part of the Unitarian church is seen on the right, the Orthodox church on the left, near which is seen in the distance the tower of the Universalist church. The next building in the distance westward of the Unitarian church is the academy, which is constructed of stone; the spire seen near this building is that of the Baptist church. The town house, having pillars at each end, is seen in the distance, in the enclosed green. Saxonville, a manufacturing village, is situated about two miles north east from this place, and has a Congregational church. The "Framingham Bank" has a capital of $99,450. Population, 2,881. The Boston and Worcester railroad passes through this town, about 2 miles south from the village. This town is watered by Sudbury river, a principal branch of the Concord river. The surface of the town cannot be considered as hilly or plain; it Consists mostly of gentle eminences and. depressions, every acre being susceptible of cultivation. The soil on the high arable land is rather gravelly, but generally, throughout the town, it is well adapted for the raising of rye and corn.

The Framingham cotton and woollen manufactory was incorporated. in 1813, with a capital of $50,000. The Saxon manufactory was incorporated in 1824. "This company purchased the Leicester factory the same year, and the stock was united in the same corporation by act of court, Feb. 8, 1825; capital $150,000." In 1837, there were in this town 5 woollen mills, 11 sets of woollen machinery; wool consumed, 744,000 lbs.; cloth manufactured, 268,640 yards, valued at $311,800; males employed, 105; females, 141; capital invested, $415,000. There were 1,524 pairs of boots and 34,955 pairs of shoes manufactured, valued at $31,293; value of paper manufactured, $46,000. There were 7,777 straw bonnets manufactured, the value of which was $16,358.

The following is a copy of the Latin inscription on the monument of the Rev. Mr. Smith, the first minister of this place, with a translation.

Hic jacet qui obiit A. D. 1745, Aprilis 24to, AEtatisque anno 67mo. vir ille Reverendus D. JOHANNES SWIFT. Dotibus et nativis et acquisitis ornatus; Docendi Artifex, Exemplar vivendi Felix, dum vixit mores exhibens secundum Divinas Regulas Ep o necessarios: commiscens prudentiam Serpentis columbeaque innocentiam commercium cum eo habentibus. In vita percharus, atque gratam sui etsi mosetam memoriam post mortem suis relinquens :-Qui per varios easus variaque rerum discrimina, atque usque ad mortem, raram Discretiouem, Modestiam, Patientiam, voluntatique Supremi Numinis submissionem spectandam prmbens, jam tandem in Domino requievit, adoptionem scilicet corporis obruti Redemptionem, expectabundus.

[Here lies the Reverend John Swift, who died in 1745, April 24th, in the 67th year of his age. Adorn edwith gifts both native and acquired; he was a master in the art of teaching; a model of living, conforming all his acts to the divine laws. To all those with whom he had to do, he exhibited the wisdom of the serpent and the innocence of the (not readable) though mournful memory to his friends. Through many scenes and trials, and even unto death, he manifested a rare discretion, modesty, patience, and submission to the Divine Will. He at length rests with the Lord, looking for the adoption, that is, the redemption of the body.]

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


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