MORE than twenty years ago I wrote a short account of the origin and first settlement of Bridgewater, which was published in the 7th vol. 2d series of the Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society. In course of the requisite enquires and researches it came in my way to acquire some distinct knowledge of the names and families of the original proprietors and early residents. To the stock of information thus obtained I subsequently, from time to time, as opportunity presented, made considerable accessions till my manuscripts became numerous and somewhat particular. This becoming generally known to my friends in the town and vicinity, applications were frequently made to me for information as to the genealogy of particular families; and at length desires were strongly expressed that what I had collected in this way should be published. These solicitations have been repeated and multiplied for several years past, and have sometimes been met on my part with partial promises of compliance. Many causes have concurred to delay a final determination, and it is not without much hesitation, and some reluctance, that I have come at last to the conclusion to publish.
While many seem to care but little, and think less, about their own descent, or from whom they are sprung: there is, nevertheless, in most of us a strong desire to know something of those who have preceded us on the same stage, and of the manner in which they have performed their respective parts. There is also an increasing attention to the biography of our fathers and the first planters of New England. Each one finds a pleasure in knowing something of his own particular ancestor, who first left
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