|OLD GRAVE YARD.||185|
[Transcribed by Dale H. Cook]
highway to a red oak; and then by a heap of stones and stake on the southerly side of the highway that comes from Poor meadow; then northwesterly to heap of stones and stake; then running southerly (leaving out the graves to ye west) to small red oak sapling; then westerly by ye highway to our son Samuel's side line of his land, on the easterly side, and also our one-sixth undivided land."
"Leaving out the graves to the west" mentioned in this deed of 1703, undoubtedly means the 100 rods with graves on it referred to in the deed of 1759, and which had been used for a burial-ground many years before, as stated in the deed of 1759.
Nehemiah Allen was 22 years old in 1703, and was not married till 1707, and his parents, grantors in this deed of 1703, had moved into their new house (Leonard Hill house) from their old house on the bank of the river, near the railroad crossing; and there they lived, and there they died; he June 28, 1705, and his wife, Sarah, after the date of the deed, June 28, 1703, but when is not known; and were, no doubt, both of them buried in this yard, and on the 100 rods given by his son Samuel, but no stone marks their resting-place.
Samuel Allen, Jr., donor of the one hundred rods, and father of Mathew Allen, Jr., donor of the 121 rods, was born 1660; was first married 1686; and died 1750, then about 90 years old. When he gave this land, one hundred rods, or how many graves there were in 1703, is uncertain; but it was probably the first land used for a public burying-ground in East Bridgewater. The one hundred rods is supposed to he the high ground in the southwest part of this grave yard, and is considered the oldest part of the yard.
At this date, 1703, there had not probably been many deaths of adult persons living in this part of old Bridgewater. We find only five families living in East Bridgewater in 1662, eleven years after the first settlement in West Bridgewater, to wit: N. Byram, on Forge brook, S. Allen and Wm. Brett, on Matfield river; Thomas Whitman and Robert Latham, on Satucket river. These five families, with some married children, perhaps constituting seperate families, were all we know of living in this part of old Bridgewater during King Philip's War of 1675-6. Other families and individuals came in soon after, and settled here; the population slowly, but steadily, increasing down to 1703.
The adult persons living and dying in this part of old Bridgewater previous to 1703, and probably buried in this yard, so far as is known, were N. Byram, 1688, and his wife, Robert Latham and
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