Norwich as a Province of New Hampshire

“George the Third by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, etc.

To all Persons to whom these Presents shall come, greeting, Know ye, that We of our special grace, certain knowledge and mere motion, for the due encouragement of settling a new plantation within our said Province, by and with the advice of our trusty and well-beloved Benning Wentworth, Esq., our Governor and Commander in Chief of our said Province of New Hampshire, in New England, and of our council of said Province, have upon the conditions and reservations hereinafter made, given and granted, and by these presents, for us, our heirs and successors, do give and grant in equal shares, unto our loving subjects, inhabitants of our said Province of New Hampshire and our other Governments, and to their heirs and assigns forever, whose names are entered in this Grant, to be divided to and amongst them into sixty nine equal shares, all that tract or parcel of land situate, lying and being within our said Province of New Hampshire, containing by ad measurement, twenty three thousand acres, which tract is to contain six miles square, and no more, out of which an allowance is to be made for highways and unimproveable lands by rocks, ponds, mountains and rivers, one thousand and forty acres free, according to a plan and survey thereof, made by our said Governor’s order, returned into the Secretary’s office, and hereunto annexed, butted and bounded as follows, viz:

“Beginning at a Hemlock tree marked with the figures 5 and six that stand on the bank of the Connecticut River just at the head of White River falls and is opposite to the North-west corner of Lebanon, from thence North Sixty Degrees West six miles, from thence North forty-five degrees East six miles, from thence South Sixty degrees East seven miles to an elm tree marked with the figures 6 & 7, from thence down the river to the first bounds mentioned.

“And that the same be and hereby is incorporated into a Township by the name of Norwhich. That the inhabitants that do or shall hereafter inhabit the said Township, are hereby declared to be en-franchised with and entitled to all and every the privileges and immunities that other towns within our Province by law exercise and enjoy: And further, that the said town as soon as there shall be fifty families resident and settled thereon, shall have the liberty of holding two Fairs, one of which shall be on the ______ and the other on the ______ annually, which Fairs are not to continue longer than the respective ______ following the said ______ and that as soon as the said town shall consist of fifty families, a market may be opened and kept one or more days in each week, as may be thought most advantageous to the inhabitants. Also, that the first meeting for the choice of Town officers, agreeable to the laws of our said Province, shall be held on the last Wednesday of August next which said meeting shall be notified by Mr. Eleazer Wales who is hereby also appointed the Moderator of the said meeting, which he is to notify and govern agreeably to the laws and customs of said Province and the annual meeting for ever hereafter for the choice of such officers for the said Town shall be on the Second Tuesday of March annually, to Have and to Hold the said tract of land as above expressed, together with all privileges and appertenances, to them and their respective heirs and assigns forever, upon the following conditions, viz.

“1st, That every Grantee, his heirs and assigns shall plant and cultivate five acres of land within the term of five years for every fifty acres contained in his or their share or proportion of land in said Township, and continue to improve and settle the same by additional cultivation, on penalty of the forfeiture of his grant or share in the said Township, and of its reverting to us, our heirs and successors, to be by us or their regranted to such of our subjects as shall effectually settle and cultivate the same.

“2d, That all white and other pine trees within the said Township, fit for masting our Royal Navy, be carefully preserved for that use, and none to be cut or felled without our special license for so doing first had and obtained, upon the penalty of the forfeiture of the right of such grantee, his heirs and assigns, to us, our heirs and successors as well as being subject to the penalty of any act or acts of parliament that now are or hereafter shall be enacted.

“3. That before any division of the land be made to and among the Grantees, a tract of land as near the centre of the said Township as the land will admit of, shall be reserved and marked out for Town Lots, one of which shall be allotted to each Grantee of the contents of one acre.

“4. Yielding and paying there for to us, our heirs and successors for the space of ten years, to be computed from the date hereof, the rent of one ear of Indian corn only, on the twenty fifth day of December annually, if lawfully demanded, the first payment to be made on the 25th of Decr 1762.

“5. Every proprietor, settler or inhabitant, shall yield and pay unto us, our heirs and successors yearly, and every year forever, from and after the expiration of ten years, from the above said twenty fifth day of December namely, on the twenty fifth day of December which will be in the year of our Lord 1772, one shilling proclamation money for every one hundred acres he so owns, settles or possesses, and so in proportion for a greater or lesser tract of the said land: which money shall be paid by the ‘respective persons above said, their heirs or assigns, in our Council Chamber in Portsmouth, or to such Officer or Officers as shall be appointed to receive the same; and this to be in lieu of all other rents and services whatever.

“In Testimony whereof, We have caused the Seal of our Said Province to be hereunto affixed.

“Witness Banning Wentworth, Esq. our Governor and Commander in Chief of our said Province the fourth day of July in the year of our Lord Christ, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Sixty one and in the First year of our Reign.

“By his Excellency’s command, B. Wentworth.

“With advice of Council,

“Theodore Atkinson, Secy.

“Province of New Hampre July 5, 1761

“Recorded according the original

“Charter under the Province Seal. Attestr Theodore Atkinson, Sec.”

“One whole share for the Society for propagating the Gospel in foreign parts. One whole share for a Glebe for the Church of England as by law established, one share for the first settled Minister. One share for the benefit of a school in said Town. His Excellency Benning Wentworth Esq. five hundred acres to be laid as marked in plan B. W. and is to be accounted two of the within shares.

“Province of New Hampshire July 5th 1761. Recorded from the back of the original Charter of Norwhich under the Province Seal.

“Attestr, Theodore Atkinson, Secy

Atkinson, Wentworth,



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