Danby, Rutland, VT
Genealogy & History

1816 Town Meeting

From The History of Danby, Vermont, by J. C. Williams, 1869

 

1816 Danby Town Meeting

1816 was the great year of famine. People refer to it as the cold summer. There was said to be plenty of rain in the spring, which continued until May, when a drought set in which lasted till late in the fall. There were frosts every month in the year. Grain and grass were a complete failure, and but very little corn was raised in town, in consequence of which, there was great destitution among the inhabitants the following winter and spring. We are told that people were reduced to the last extremity, and many cattle perished.

The annual town meeting of 1817, was held at the inn of Nicholas Jenks, and Caleb Parris was moderator. It was voted to divide the town into six districts, and authorize the inhabitants to build and support a pound. Paul Hulett, Edmund Sherman and Thomas Griffith, were appointed a committee to settle with the overseer of the poor and treasurer. A tax of one cent on the dollar was voted, to pay the expenses of the town for that year. A special town meeting was held May 24th, Alexander Barrett, moderator. Twelve trustees, one for each school district, were appointed to make such alterations in said districts, as were necessary. The petition upon which the above meeting was held, called for an additional town tax, but it was voted not to raise any. The selectmen were authorized to act upon their own judgment in taking care of the poor, without calling upon a justice of the peace for orders.

The annual March meeting of 1818, was held at the house of Daniel Parris. A petition had been made to the town, to divide the sixth school district, upon which a committee was appointed, consisting of Barton Bromley, Edmund Sherman and Stephen 50

Calkins, who were to examine the case, and make report at the next meeting.

At the census of 1820, we find the population of the town to be sixteen hundred and seven, (1607) a falling off of one hundred and twenty-three, (123.) The annual meeting for that year, was held at the house of Henry Herrick, Jr., and Alexander Barrett was moderator. Stephen Calkins was elected town clerk at that meeting, in place of Edward Vail, who had held the office since 1799. It was voted to the pay the listers seventy-five cents per day for their services. The annual town meeting of 1821, was held at the house of Bradford Barnes, Jr., at the Borough, and Alexander Barrett was moderator. No particular change was made in the town officers for that year. The selectmen were appointed overseers of the poor, and it was voted to hold future town and freemen's meetings, at the Inn of Henry Herrick, Jr., at the Corners.

The annual meeting of 1822, was warned to be holden at the Inn of Henry Herrick, Jr., but for some reason it was adjourned to the house of Nicholas Jenks. The town voted to relinquish all right and title which it had in the Methodist meeting-house, to Barton Bromley. A special town meeting was held June 3rd, Zoheth Allen, moderator. A committee consisting of David Griffith, Hosea Williams, Hosea Barnes, Zoheth Allen and David Youngs, was appointed to make all necessary alterations in school districts, and make report at the next meeting. It was voted to raise a school tax sufficient to make the public money equal to the amount of tax required by law, for the support of schools. This meeting was adjourned till the third day of July following, and was held at the same place, Rufus Bucklin, moderator. The school committee having made some alterations in the districts, made their report, which was accepted.

Town and freemen's meetings were held at the Inn of Arwin Hutchins, from 1823 to 1825. There were but three listers appointed in 1824, it having previously been the custom to elect four or five. In 1826, the annual town meeting was held at the inn of Nicholas Jenks, and David Griffith, Hosea Barnes and David Kelley, were appointed a committee to make alterations in school districts, and James McDaniels was appointed an agent to manage a law suit then pending between Danby and Dorset. In 1827, David Youngs, Joseph Allen and Edward Vail, Jr., were appointed overseers of the poor, and a tax of four cents on the dollar, was raised to defray the expenses of the town. William Hitt was moderator of the annual meeting of 1828, which was held at the inn of Ephraim Gilmore, at the Corners. Andrus Eggleston, Aaron Rogers, Jr., Harris Otis, John Vail, Hosea Barnes, Israel Richardson and Alvah Bull, were appointed a school committee for that year. It was voted to give all delinquent town officers, who were in arrears with the town, three months to settle their accounts with the treasurer, and if not settled within that time, the treasurer was directed to take legal measures to collect the same. On the 31st day of March, 1829, a town meeting was held at the inn Samuel Harnden, and David Youngs was moderator. Israel B. Richardson, Abraham Locke, Alvah Bull, Isaac Southwick and Andrus Eggleston, were appointed a superintending committee, for the inspection and examination of schools and teachers.

The population of the town in 1830, was thirteen hundred and sixty-two, showing a decrease of two hundred and forty-five in ten years. The annual town meeting for that year, was held at the Inn of Samuel Harnden, and Alexander Barrett was moderator. The number of highway surveyors was increased to twenty-six. A committee consisting of Caleb Parris, Harris Otis and Alexander Barrett, was appointed to settle with the selectmen and Treasurer. Another committee was appointed to make alterations in school districts, whose acts either in establishing or altering lines, should be valid and binding. In 1831, the town appointed Alvah Bull, Ira M. Frazer, Joel M. Rogers and Isaac Southwick, a committee to superintend common schools. Alexander Barrett, James McDaniels and Harris Otis, were appointed a committee to correspond with other towns, in reference to building a poor-house, if thought best, and make report at the next meeting. A town tax of eight cents on the dollar, was voted for that year.

The annual meeting of 1832, was held at the inn of Bethuel Bromley, and Caleb Parris was moderator. It was voted to pay the collector of taxes five per cent. for collecting, and have no abatements allowed, on either state or town tax bills. A tax of one per cent. was voted for the support of the poor, and other town expenses; and a tax of two per cent. in addition to what was required by law, for the repairs of highways and bridges. Wm. Bassett, Andrus Eggleston, Joel M. Rogers, and Rial Fisk, were appointed a superintending committee of common schools for 1833.

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