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THIS town was taken wholly from the town of Worcester, being included in their original grants, and was the
north-westerly part thereof. It was incorporated in 1740, by the name of Holden, in commemoration of the Hon. Samuel
Holden, Esq., one of the directors of the Bank of England, who was a generous benefactor to the literary and religious
interests of the country. This worthy man transmitted to New England for charitable purposes, in books and bills
of exchange, to the amount of £4,847, New England currency. After his decease, his widow and daughters sent
over in value, for the same noble and pious uses, the sum of £5,585. With part of this latter sum Holden
Chapel, in the University of Cambridge, Mass., was erected, in the year 1745.
The first church was organized in 1742, and Rev. Joseph Davis was ordained their pastor. He was dismissed in 1772,
and suecoeded by Rev. Joseph Avery. Rev. Horatio Bardwell, the next pastor, was installed in 1823, and was succeeded
by Rev. William B. Paine, in 1834.
This town is hilly and uneven, but not very broken. The soil is various, but generally of a loamy kind. Quinepoxet
river passes through the town. In the south-east part of the town is Stone House Hill, whose steep and rocky sides
were once famous for rattlesnakes. There is 1 Congregational meeting house, and 1 Baptist. Distance, 7 miles from
Worcester, and 48 west of Boston. Population, 1,789. In 1837, there were 4 cotton mills, 5,800 spindles: 1,023,000
yards of cotton goods were manufactured; value, $84,000; males employed, 68; females, 66. There were 2 woollen
mills, 1 sets of machinery; 92,000 yards of cloth were manufactured value $81,000. One cotton mill for the manufacture
of warp, hatting, and wicking. Boots manufactured, 5,800 pairs; shoes, 10,000 pairs; value, $20,500.
Historical Collections Relateing to the
History and Antiquities of
Every town in Massachusetts with
By John Warner Barber.
Published by Warren Lazell.