Northbridge, Massachusetts

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Northbridge is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 13,182 at the 2000 census. The Northbridge Town Hall is located at 7 Main Street in Whitinsville. The town is now a part of the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, of the National Park Service. Northbridge claims to history include: Native American Nipmuc lands, Colonel John Spring, who led the Uxbridge militia training company in the American Revolution, Samuel Spring, Revolutionary War Chaplain, the Residence of Ezra T. Benson 1830-1832, the birthplace of President Millard Fillmore's mother, Phoebe, and home to the Whitin Machine Works from 1831–1964

For geographic and demographic information on the village of Whitinsville, please see the article Whitinsville, Massachusetts.

Contents

History

Early history

The earliest residents were the Nipmuc, or "Small Pond People". They had a well developed agriculture, made tools, and had a graphite mine at Sturbridge. Northbridge was first settled by Europeans in 1704 and was officially incorporated on July 14, 1772. The town was once part of Mendon, from 1667–1726, and part of Uxbridge, from 1727-1772. Colonel John Spring, who had agitated for the new town of Northbridge, and later reversed his position, led a company of men in the Massachusetts Militia in the Revolution. Dozens of local men fought at the Lexington alarm, and at Bunker Hill. Samuel Spring, John's son, became a Revolutionary War Chaplain commissioned in the militia at the Siege of Boston, and who also served in the Invasion of Canada (1775) under Colonel Benedict Arnold.[1] Samuel carried Benedict Arnold and Aaron Burr, his Princeton classmate, off of separate battlefields. Colonel Seth Read and his brother, Colonel Joseph Read owned more than half of the land in this town at the time of the American Revolutionary War.[1] They both fought in the Massachusetts Militia, and the Continental Army.[1] The mother of President Millard Fillmore, Phoebe Millard (Fillmore), was born in Northbridge. Ezra Taft Benson, Sr., a famous Mormon pioneer, lived here from 1830-1832 on his sisters farm.[2] He married Pamela Andrus, of Northbridge, and also apparently her sister, Adeline Brooks Andrus.[2] He then married six more times and served as a missionary to the Sandwich Islands, and in the Utah Territorial Legislature.[2]

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