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Officials in America
THIS town was chiefly taken from Templeton, and was set off as a separate parish in 1774, and in 1786 was incorporated
a town, and named Gerry, in honor of Elbridge Gerry, a vice-president of the United States; “but on account of
the disapprobation of his measures when governor of Massachusetts, and especially a law for districting the state
for the choice of senators, which was highly obnoxious to a majority of the town, they petitioned to the court,
and the name was changed to Phillipston, in 1812.” The organization of a church was retarded on account of the
revolutionary war. However, in 1785, one was gathered, under the direction of the ecclesiastical council, and in
1788 Rev. Ebenezer Tucker was ordained pastor. He was succeeded, in 1800, by Rev. Ezekiel Bascom; the next minister,
Rev. Joseph Chickering, was installed in 1822, and was succeeded by Rev. Alexander Lovell, in 1835.
This town is uneven, consisting of hills and valleys, but the soil is productive. Two miles west of the meeting
house is situated a very fertile hill, large in extent, called Prospect Hill. There is an eminence on this hill,
which overlooks all the highlands for many miles around. Upon it are many excellent farms. About a mile east of
the center is situated a large and fine pond. There are 3 churches, I Congregational, 1 Universalist, and 1. Methodist.
Population, 887. Distance, 30 miles from Worcester, and 58 from Boston. In 1837, there was one cotton mill, 1,512
spindles; 165,000 yards of cotton goods manufactured; value, $15,000; one woollen mill; 11,500 yards of cloth manufactured;
value, $25,000. Palm leaf hats manufactured, 65,500; value, $15,600.
Historical Collections Relateing to the
History and Antiquities of
Every town in Massachusetts with
By John Warner Barber.
Published by Warren Lazell.