Middleborough, Plymouth County, Massachusetts Genealogy

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This is a historical and genealogical guide to the town of Middleborough. You will find help with town histories, vital records, city directories, cemetery records and cemeteries, churches, town records, newspapers, maps, and libraries. There is a detailed guide for the town set off from Middleborough: Lakeville.

Town Clerk[edit | edit source]

20 Centre St 1st Fl
Middleborough, MA 02346
Phone: 508-946-2415
Fax: 508-946-2308
Email: aferreira@middleborough.com

Brief History[edit | edit source]

The area was first seen by two messengers from the Plymouth settlement in 1621 to Massasoit. They lodged with their Indian guide at Namasket. It was noted that it was the site of an Indian village where many died quickly a few years ago. This was the place that almost a half century later became the first white settlement in the modern town. The sixteen families there had to evacuate during the King Philip's War in 1675. This large land mass was divided and the southwest part became the second precinct in 1719. The third precinct was designated in 1743 from the northwest part of town called Titicut. This land all first part of Plymouth Colony. The town was placed in Plymouth County when counties were formed in 1685. For a brief time, the town was part of the Dominion of New England from 1686 to 1689. The town is still in Plymouth County, though was in limbo, until the "Colony" was merged with Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1691 that became the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Historical Data[edit | edit source]

The basic data is from the "Historical Data" publication series[1] with additions from various sources.

Associated names

Abington at one time has been called Assowamsett Neck, Cotuckticut, Ketiticut, Middleberry, Namaskett, Quittaub, Quittaquas, and Titicut.

Village or section names include Barden Hills, Bull's Eye Crossing, Court End, East Middleborough, Eddyville, Fall Brook, Four Corners, Highlands, Mount Carmel, Muttock, North Middleborough, Namasket, Neck, Peaseville, Puddingshire, Purchade, Putnams Rock, Rocky Meadow, South Middleborough, Star Mill Village, Tack Factory, The Green, Thomastown, Titicut, Walnut Plains, Wappanucket, Waterville, and West End.

Border changes
Dates Events
1 June 1669 Established Namassakett shall be the town of Middleberry. [Ply. Col. Rec., 5: 19]
1 June 1675 Border between Middleberry and Bridgewater established. [Ply. Col. Rec., 11: 241]
28 Sept. 1680 Certain lands called Assowamsett Neck and places adjacent granted to Middleborough.
4 July 1734 Part included in the new town of Halifax.
11 Dec. 1734 Part annexed to Plympton.
24 Mar. 1849 Bounds between Middleborough and Carver established.
13 May 1853 Second or West Parish set off as Lakeville.
7 Mar. 1921 Border between Middleborough and Carver established.
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Town Histories[edit | edit source]

Works written on the town include:
Barnstable CountyBristol CountyPlymouth CountyNorfolk CountySuffolk CountyFalmouthMashpeeSandwichBourneFairhavenAchushnetNew BedfordDartmouthWestportFall RiverFreetownBerkleyTauntonRaynhamEastonStoughtonAvonHolbrookCantonRandolphWeymouthCohassetBraintreeQuincyMiltonBostonHullHinghamScituateNorwellRocklandAbingtonBrocktonWest BridgewaterWhitmanHanoverMarshfieldDuxburyPembrokeHansonEast BridgewaterBridgewaterHalifaxPlymptonKingstonPlymouthCarverMiddleboroughLakevilleRochesterWarehamMarionMattapoisett
Town of Middleborough in Plymouth County, Massachusetts.

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Vital Records[edit | edit source]

The town's vital records are available in many locations:

Original records
Published records
  • Barbara Lambert Merrick and Alicia Crane Williams, Middleborough, Massachusetts, Vital Records (Boston, 1986-1990), 2 v.
    [Note: Volume One missed original v. 4, pt. 1, p. 50-61, can be found in Mayflower Descendant, 33 [1935]: 39-46. Also missing are three marriages from county court records for 1693 and 1694 published in Pilgrim Notes and Queries, 3 [1915]: 120-122 at 122]
    Digital version at American Ancestors ($).
    WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/M2 V29m.
Online records
  • Middleborough Proprietors' Records, 1661-1887 (includes some town meetings and vital records), vital records and indexes, 1674-1854, vital records and other records, 1757-1850, and vital records, 1847-1905, are browsable (i.e. not indexed as of Nov. 2012) on FamilySearch.
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City Directories[edit | edit source]

Middleborough was published in 1884, 1889, 1892, 1895, 1897, 1899, 1901/2, 1904/5, 1906/7, 1909, 1911, 1913, 1914/5, 1916/7, 1919, 1921-1923, 1928/9, 1930.

The Library of Congress (Washington, D.C.) has one of the largest collections of city directories in the country. They are likely to own most of the years listed above. Their collection is in microfiche, microfilm, and books, but there is no online inventory of their holdings except for microfilm. See their guide online.

Other holdings:

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Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

The following is a list of cemeteries in present-day Middleborough. For a map of the cemeteries, see PlymouthColony website. For more details regarding these cemeteries, see the state guide under cemeteries for books on the subject or see Friends of Middleborough Cemeteries website.

  1. Benson Cemetery, n.d.
  2. Central Cemetery, 1819. (A)
  3. Drake Cemetery, n.d. (A)
  4. East Cemetery, n.d.
  5. Eaton Cemetery, n.d. (A)
  6. Ewer Cemetery, n.d.
  7. Fall Brook Cemetery, 1819. (A)
  8. Gammons Cemetery, n.d. (A)
  9. Green Cemetery, n.d.
  10. Highland Cemetery, n.d.
  11. Hope's Rest Cemetery, 1884. (A)
  12. Indian Burial Site, n.d.
    William B. Taylor, "An Indian Burial Site in North Middleboro" in the Middleborough Antiquarian, 10 [Apr. 1969]: 2-4.
  13. Marion Road - Neck Cemetery, 1985. (A)
  14. Middleboro Infirmary Cemetery, 1933.
  15. Nemansket Hill Burial Ground, 1662. (A)
    John W. Willard, "Records from the Nemasket Cemetery Middleborough, Mass." in the Mayflower Descendant, 15 [1913]: 1-9, 100-110.
  16. Parish Burial Ground at the Green, 1717. (A)
    John W. Willard, "Gravestone Records from the Old Cemetery at 'The Green,' Middleborough, Mass." in the Mayflower Descendant, 12 [1910]: 65-71, 142-145, 198-202; 13 [1911]: 23-27, 117-120; 14 [1912]: 80-85, 130-136, 214-224. {Note: This supersedes Charles M. Thatcher's articles in The Genealogical Quarterly Magazine (v. 4, 1903) and The Genealogical Magazine (v. 1, 1906) by correcting 260 errors found.]
  17. Gilbert Peirce Cemetery, 19th century.
  18. Poor House Cemetery, 1832. (A)
  19. Purchase / Alden Cemetery, 1728. (A)
  20. Reed Cemetery, 1813.
  21. Rock / Thomas Cemetery, 1745.
  22. Sachem Street / Gammons Cemetery, 1828.
  23. St. Mary's Cemetery, 1891.
    Diocesan Archives, Lot sales, 1891-1913, 1932.
  24. Smallpox Cemetery, 1777. (A)
    "Small Pox Cemetery, East Middleborough" in the Mayflower Descendant, 12 [1910]: 256.
    "Small Pox Cemetery, Brook Street, 1777" in the Middleborough Antiquarian, 13 [Apr. 1972]: 5-6.
  25. South Middleboro Cemetery, 1768. (A)
  26. Tack Factory / Leonard Cemetery, 1819. (A)
  27. Thomas Cemetery, n.d.
  28. Thomastown Cemetery, 1806. (A)
  29. Tispequin Street Cemetery, 1838.
  30. Titicut Parish Cemetery, 1750. (A, B)
  31. Vernon Street Smallpox Burial Ground, 1778. (A)
  32. Wall Street Gravesite, n.d. (A)
  33. Wappanucket Cemetery, 1832. (A)
  34. Warrentown Cemetery, 1744. (A)
  35. Wood / Thomas Wood Cemetery, 1796. (A)

Abstracts of the cemeteries above are marked and keyed to:
(A). Charles M. Thatcher, Old Cemeteries of Southeastern Massachusetts (Middleborough, Mass., 1995). WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.4 V3
(B). New England Historic Genealogical Society, Manuscript Dept.

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Churches[edit | edit source]

The following is a list of churches established in town in order of organization date (if known) and condition of records in the 1889 survey if listed. To learn more about church history, see the page of online links.

  1. First Congregational Church of Middleborough, 1694, records good.
    See books in the history section above. "Baptismal records of the First Congregational Church, 1710-1820, FHL film 945018 Item 1.
  2. North Middleborough Congregational Church (now North Congregational Church - United Church of Christ), 1748, records "complete."
  3. First Baptist Church (now First Baptist Church of North Middleboro), 1756, records good.
  4. United Brethren Church, later Second Baptist Church, and finally Fourth Baptist Church (extinct), n.d., records survive for 1795-1867.
  5. Third Baptist Church (now Rock Village Church), 1761, records good.
  6. Central Baptist Church, 1828, records incomplete.
  7. Central Congregational Church, 1847, records good.
  8. South Middleborough Methodist Episcopal Church (Now South Middleborough United), 1858, records good.
  9. Middleborough Methodist Episcopal Church, 1865, records good.
  10. Sacred Heart Parish, 1885.
  11. First Unitarian Universalitst Society of Middleboro, 1889.
  12. Advent Lutheran Church, n.d.
  13. Church of Our Saviour Episcopal, n.d.
  14. LifeHouse Church, n.d.
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Newspapers[edit | edit source]

  1. Namasket Gazette, 1852-1857.
  2. Middleboro Gazette (title varies), 1857-1868.
  3. Middleboro Gazette, 1905-1977.
  4. Nemasket River Journal, 1977-1978.
  5. Villager-Journal, 1978-1980.
  6. Middleboro Gazette, 1980-2006.
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Libraries and Historical Societies[edit | edit source]

The following is a list of research facilities in town:

Middleborough Public Library
102 North Main Street
Middleborough MA 02346
Phone 508-946-2470
Email midlib@sailsinc.org

Middleborough Historical Association
18 Jackson Street
PO Box 304
Middleborough MA 02346
Phone 508-947-1969
Email middleboroughhistory@yahoo.com

References[edit | edit source]

  1. William Francis Galvin, Historical Data Relating to Counties, Cities and Towns in Massachusetts (Boston, new ed., 1997), 76-77. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.4 H2h 1997
Adjacent towns: Plymouth Co: Bridgewater | Carver | Halifax | Lakeville | Plympton | Rochester | Wareham Norfolk Co: Raynham | Taunton