Town Meeting Minutes, Salem 1725

These town meeting minutes concern appointments of men to offices, payments for a writing school, licenses for an inn, payments to townspeople for support of poor citizens, mending of the town house windows and a sum to be paid for spinning materials to put a girl who is in jail to work.

Salem in New England Anno1 1725page2image1387200
At a Town Meeting Legally assembled, June 14 – 276
Voted William Gedney, Esqr. Moderator
–That be a Town Rate2 of ye3 Sum of 350, raised for this present year—
—Jurymen to Serve at ye next Inferior Court to be holden at Salem ye Month
At A Meeting of the Selectmen June 30th – 277
Sundry4 Orders on the Treasurer
To pay unto Mr. John Swinerton, Master of ye Writing School for 1⁄4 year – 2:10:0
To pay unto John Holliman, for mending ye stove at ye Writing School – 0:4:0
Ordered, Samuel Putnam is Approbated5 to be admitted to License for an Innholder
Ordered, The persons nominated to His Majesties Justices for Cutters of Fish6 pursuant to Law
At A Meeting of the Selectmen July 2 – 277
Ordered, Agreed with Tim Day of Gloucester to repair the Town Causeway on ye Flats by Colonel Turners, for ye Sum of L40, and he to find all from excepted
At A Meeting of the Selectmen July 5th – 277
Sundry Orders on the Treasurer
To pay unto Daniel Darling Jr.’s wife for keeping a child7 of J. Gringlet – 1:5:0
To pay unto ye Widow Chamberlin for ten days keeping of James Gringlet’s Child – 6:0
To pay unto Samuel Flint for his taking to Apprentice ye Child, Aged 2 & 1⁄2 Years – 10:0:0
Ordered the price of wheat for ye present Month be thereby is Stated at 12s – 6d per bushel and that the Town Clerk post up Notifications thereof
At A Meeting of the Selectmen August 7th – 278
Ordered, Agreed that the Selectmen as Assessors8 do meet on Monday the 23rd Instant at Mr. Pratt’s to make the Public taxes, and if the Town Clerk post up Notifications for ye Inhabitants to bring in true & perfect Lists of yr rateable Polls & Estates9
At A Meeting of the Selectmen August 13th – 278
Ordered Hannah Whitamore having deserted her Service10 appointed her and being once more committed to the House of Correction, it is agreed that there be a Spinning Wheel, A pair of cards11 & some wool procured & delivered to Paul Langdon, Master of said house, that she may be Employed & set to Work as the Law directs, Accordingly on the 18th instant was delivered to ye said master for ye said service A Spinning Wheel 7/6d, 1 pr. Cards 5/6d, 2 lb Cotton 6/ – 0: 19:0
At A Meeting of the Selectmen September 13  – 278
Sundry Orders on the Treasurer
To pay ye Account of disbursements12 on Eben Peters & wife in ye Sickness To pay ye Account for Repairing the school House ye last Summer – 3:6:17
To pay ye Disbursements on Mary Dove & Hannah Whitamore 3:11:10
To pay ye Town Clerk for two Books for the Town Records – 1:10:0
To pay Mr. Orne for his Account for sundry disbursements for ye Poor House – 2:19:6
To pay Miles Ward junr his Account for mending ye Town House Windows 1:14:0
Ordered, that the price of Wheat for this Month be thereby is Stated at ten shillings per Bushell 7 that the Town Clerk post Notifications thereof

1 Anno = ”in the year”
2 Town rate = town tax
3 Ye = ”the”
4 Sundry = some
5 Approbated to be admitted = given a license by the town
6 Cutters of Fish = a town job to make sure fish are caught and processed according to the law
7 “keeping a child” = sometimes towns paid for poor people and children who were not able to care for themselves to be taken care of by another person or family in town; alternatives were to be sent to the “poor farm” – today we have welfare & social services
8 “selectmen as assessors” = town selectmen deciding how much taxes should be for that year
9 “Rateable polls & estates” = taxes for voting (poll taxes) and taxes on land & things owned (estate)
10 Deserted her service = ran away from her apprentice‐ship, or from being a servant
11 “pair of cards” = combs for getting fibers ready to spin or make into yarn
12 Disbursements = payments


Town Meeting Decisions (1725). The City of Salem Archives, Salem, MA.