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Welcome to Wrentham

WRENTHAM MASSACHUSETTS

 

The town of Wrentham Massachusetts was incorporated in 1673.  It is situated 25 miles south of Boston and is approximately 22 sq. miles with a population of about 20.000 inhabitants.

 

Early white explorers who first viewed the area were undoubtedly attracted by its natural beauty. The Geographic location was favourable, too, it being midway between the towns of Providence and Boston.

 

Indians inhabited the area much earlier and Archaeological surveys indicate that the site was occupied about 6500 B.C. and the last group of Indians, about the dawn of the Christian era, who settled there called it Wollomonopoag, the place of shells.

 

                                                       

In 1638 a Rector of Wrentham, Suffolk the Rev. John Philip together with many parishioners went to New England and no doubt many were instrumental in founding the Township of Wrentham Massachusetts.

 

Here in Wrentham, Suffolk the Thurston family have visited and traced back their family links where their ancestors are recorded in the Church and Chapel records.

 

Thomas Thurston, who was a member of the commission designated by the General Court, was given the responsibility for maintaining the town records at the first meeting of the commissioners in 1673.

 

In 1941 the people of Wrentham, Massachusetts wrote to the Parish of Wrentham, England stating that they where planning to raise money to present a Station Wagon to our country in support of the British Relief Fund. A total sum of $1060.00 was turned over to the British Relief Fund and a Utility Van was purchased and utilized in London during the WW2.

 

See www.wrentham.ma.us

In 1661 New Englanders, many of who came from East Anglia, moved into the area and a committee meeting voted to purchase land from the Indians, in keeping with the regulations of the General Court, recognizing the validity of the Indian ownership of the land . The area of six hundred acres to be apportioned among settlers . The sale price of this was not clear for some years. “Philip Sachem,” later known as King Philip of Pocomoke, agreed to the sale of the land for £24 10s. This was to be raised by assessing each of the proprietors according to the value of his cow-commons, the land allotted to him for his cattle. Later when some Indians who lived in Wrentham claimed that they had not been consulted in the sale, arrangements were made to provide them with land within the town limits as compensation for land taken. In 1669 Philip claimed a tract of land which the colonists believed to be part of their territory. Philip asked to meet with representatives of the town  “to treat about a tract of land of four or five miles square”. In his letter Philip asked for a Holland shirt to wear at a meeting of the General Court in Plymouth. It gave rise to the legend, often repeated, that the tract was purchased for a shirt.

In their petition for the incorporation, the inhabitants of Wollomonopoag asked for their town to be called Wrentham, following the pattern of other towns in naming their settlements after English cities and towns. Some of the settlers must have come from Wrentham near the coast in East Suffolk. Wrentham, Massachusetts, is probably the only town of that name in the United States and there is a town named Wrentham in Alberta, Canada.

 

Wrentham in Suffolk England has for many years maintained links with Wrentham, Massachusetts and visitors from both Townships have been received by the communities in each country.

 

 

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