Rehoboth and Attleboro
By George Randall
The towns of Rehoboth
and Attleboro will celebrate their anniversaries in the month of
October. The first will celebrate its two hundred and fiftieth
anniversary on the third of October; and the latter, which was set off
from the former, its two hundredth, on the eighteenth and nineteenth.
Strictly speaking, Attleboro was not a part of Rehoboth, but under its
jurisdiction. Certain inhabitants of Rehoboth owned the land, but it was
not within the chartered limits of Rehoboth. The Plymouth court, under
whose jurisdiction the land was purchased of the Indians by Thomas
Willett, ordered "that the North-Purchase, so called, shall lie
unto the town of Rehoboth, until it comes to be a township, and in the
mean time to bear the seventh part of all the rates that shall be levied
for the public charges of that town; and when
the said Purchase shall become a township by itself, then the said
township of Rehoboth to be eased in their rates." It was really a
plantation of Rehoboth; but was so closely allied to it that it was
practically, though not legally, a part of the town.
Both towns have had a
very interesting past, and both to-day are prominent factors in the life
of Bristol County, in Massachusetts, in which they are situated,
and exercise an influence wherever the famous products of Attleboro go,
or wherever the staunch men and women whom Rehoboth sends out into the
world are found.
There is a peculiar
value attached to the history of places which have reached such an age,
because their history takes us back to the time of the first settlers
and covers practically the whole period of the country’s history. A
few hundred years are but a brief time compared with the vast stretch of
years which have passed, but looked at from the standpoint of the
student of American history, they are full of significance.
(continued on page 226)