Providence occupies a central position in the western tier of towns. It is bounded on the north by Edinburgh, on the east by Greenfield, on the south by Gaiway and on the west by the county line. The Revised Statutes describe the town as follows:

The town of Providence shall contain all that part of said county beginning at the northwest corner of Milton, and running thence a west course on a parallel line with the north bounds of the town of Chariton to the west bounds of the county; then north along the same six miles; then easterly on a straight line parallel with the south bounds to a line running north from the northwest corner of Milton; then south along said line to the place of beginning.

Providence consists principally of hilly lands. In the western part the land is more nearly level. The entire northern part is occupied by a high table-land known as the Maxon mountain. Near the centre of the town lies Round lake, which is drained by Hans creek. Lake Desolation lies on the eastern border, partly in Greenfield. Its outlet is Kennyetto or Hagedornís creek, which flows southwesterly through the town. Frenchmanís creek rises west of the centre and flows southwest.

Nathaniel Wells and Seth Kellogg are said to have been the first settlers, ëoming at the close of the Revolution, but nothing further is known of them. Thomas Shankland, who located at Hagedornís mills in 1786, built there the first saw mill in town. Soon afterward he built a grist mill. Shankland also kept the first tavern. Martin Sleezer and Jonathan Finch were other early inhabitants. The first mill at Fayville was built by Van Hoesen about 1800. The first woolen factory was built in 1806 or 1807 by Isaiah Fuller, half a mile west of Hagedornís mills.

There are several hamlets in Providence. Barkerville lies south of the centre; Glenville is northwest of the centre; Fayville is in the northwest corner, near the Edinburgh line; West Providence and Hagedornís mills are in the southwestern part, and Providence is southwest of Barkerville, on the Gaiway line.

The Baptist church of Providence was organized in 1790, the Chrisian church of Barkerville in 1845, the M. E. church at West Providence in 1871.

The town of Providence was organized February 5, 1796, and was taken from Gaiway. At the first town meeting held in April following, these officers were elected:

Supervisor, Stephen Wait; clerk, Peleg Hart; commissioners of highways, Daniel Washburn, jr.. Edmund Wait, Ebenezer Hill; assessors, John Rhodes, Edmund Wait, Zebedee Potter; collectors, Suflivant D. Hubbell, Thurston Wells; commissioners of schools, James Goodwin, Benjamin St. John, Ebenezer Hill; overseers of the poor, Elisha Mix, John Thomas.

Since that date the following have served as supervisors of Providence:

1796-1800, Stephen Wait. 1801-06, William Carpenter. 1807, Jonathan Shipman. 1808, Othniel Allen. 180943, Calvin Wheeler. 1814, Jonathan Shipman. 1815-16, Othniel Allen. 1817-28, Calvin Wheeler. 1829, Jonathan Hagedorn. 1830, Calvin Wheeler. 1831-33, Seabury Allen. 1834, David Page. 1835.37, Calvin Wheeler. 1838-41, Hiram Carpenter. 1842, Nehemiah St. John. 1848, Hiram Carpenter. 1844. Nehemiah St. John. 1845, Hiram Carpenter. 184647, Abram Manchester. 1848. William V. Clark. 1849-50, Stephen Rockwell. 1851-52, William V. Clark. 1853, William S. Nash. 1854-55, William V. Clark. 1856-57, S. L. Hagedorn. 1858, William V. Clark. 1859-60, James Sumner, jr. 1861, S. L. Hagedorn. 1862, Stephen Rockwell. 1863-65, William V. Clark. 1866, Mosher Chase. 1867-72, William V. Clark. 1873, Stephen Rockwell. 1874-75, William V. Clark. 1876, Philip Mead. 1877, Stephen Rockwell. 1878-79, Joseph B. SowL 1880, Stephen Rockwell. 1881, Hiram H. Follett. 1882, Stephen Rockwell. 1883, William S. Nash. 1884, Philip Mead. 1885, Hawley Follett. 1886, Mosher Chase. 1887, Henry Trevett. 1888-90, Reuben W. Knapp. 1891-92, John W. Cook. 1893, Philip Mead. 1891-97, Henry L. Trevett. 1898, Hawley Follett.

The town clerksí records have been wretchedly maintained, as in many other towns in the county, and it is possible to give a partial list only of the other principal officers. Among these are the following town clerks:

1796-99, Peleg Hart. 1812, Artemus Chase. 1840, S. L. Hagedorn. 1849, Ezra T. Austin. 1850, William A. Sleezer. 1851, William S. Nash. 1852-53, Abram Manchester. 1854, Jeremiah Manchester. 1855-57, James Merrihew. 1858, J. W. Briggs. 1859, Joseph H. Dudley. 1860, William B. Carpenter. 1861, James L. Hagedorn. 1862, William 0. Sumner. 1863-65, J. W. Briggs. 1866, .James Merrihew. 1867-69, J. W. Briggs. 1870-73, J. L. Hagedorn. 1874-75, Asher Cook, jr. 1876, Willard Monroe. 1877, Henry M. Lewis. 1878, Willard Monroe. 1879-80, H. H. Follett. 1881, Herman V. Briggs. 1882 Daniel Shaw. 1883, Major Monroe. 1884, Hawley Follett. 1885-86, William T. James. 1887, Walter Matteson (resigned and Orlando B. Sism appointed). 1888, Ami B. Brown. 1889-90, Harper C. Rogers. 1891-92, Charles Trevett. 1893, Charles Hagedorn. 1894-95, Arthur W. Terry. 1896-97, J. 0. Sleezer. 1898, Willard H. Wait.

The justices elected by the people, as far as the records show, have been:

1856, Robert Cornell. 1857, Lyman Gates. 1858, Seneca Deuel. 1859, Abram Manchester. 1860, Jacob Clute. 1861, J. C. Robertson. 1862. William M. Stark, Seneca Deuel. 1863, Henry Sandford. 1864, Jacob Clute. 1S65, Anson B. Pease. 1866, Jacob Clute. 1867, Henry Sandford. 1868. Anson B. Pease. 1869, Henry Sandford. Elisha Alvord. 1870, Joseph B. Soule, Abram Manchester. 1871, Jere C. Bogart. 1872, John Rosevelt. 1873, Charles E. Deuel. 1874, Joseph B. Soule. 1875, Jere C. Bogart. 1876, Joseph Clute. 1877, Charles E. Deuel. 1878, Howland Briggs. 1879. John F. Mastin. 1880, Jacob Clute, Henry M. Lewis. 1881, Jacob Clute. 1882. L. L. Gibbs, Thomas H. Shaw. 1883, Henry L. Trevett, Jere C. Bogart. 1884, Jacob Clute. 1885, E. A. Closson. 1886, Henry L. Trevett. 1887, Jere C. Bogart. 1888, Daniel Shaw. 1889, Alexander Van Dyke, Lansing Finch. 1890, Henry L. Trevett, Alexander Van Dyke. 1893. Alexander Van Dyke. 1894, Elmer Van Pelt, O. B. Sism. 1896, Daniel Shaw. 1897, Amos Rhoades. 1898, Albert Allen.

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