Whately — The Town Records
Extracted from "History of the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts, Volume II," by Louis H. Everts, 1879.
contain appropriate legislation on the various town interests, much of which is quoted in chapters devoted to those matters. Other action, showing the characteristics of those times, and how faithful the people were in the performance of little things, is here produced. At some of the early meetings it was
"Voted to build a pound forty feet square.
"Voted to provide a grave-cloth for the use of the town.
"Voted that David Scott and Joseph Scott be a Committee to provide two biers for the use of the town.
"Voted that hogs may run at large from May 1st to Oct. 15th, being properly yoked and rung.
"Voted to let two milch cows to a family run on the commons.
"May 19, 1780—An uncommon darkness was over the earth for some hours. (Another Link)
"In 1791 the town voted that Thomas Sanderson be a delegate to attend a meeting at the house of Caleb Alvord, in Greenfield, to consult on the propriety of petitioning the General Court for a lottery for the purpose of building a bridge over Deerfield River.
In 1797 the town voted that it would not give liberty to inoculate for the small-pox."
1798.—"Voted to give a bounty of six shillings for wild-cats."
1801.—"A wolf was killed in Whately. The bounty paid by the town was $10." 1804.—"Voted to build three horse-blocks near the meeting-house."
1812.—"Voted that every man have liberty to wear his hat in town-meeting."
In 1790 the town voted that "all persons that are found seized of the freehold estate of the clear annual income of £3 shall be entitled to habitance, to every intent and purpose." Persons not so possessed "were warned and cautioned as the law directs," to prevent them from gaining a settlement and making the town liable for their support, as the following warrant will show:
"Hampshire, ss.—To either of the constables of the town of Whately, in said county, Greeting: In the name of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, You are directed to warn Samuel Brass and Sabra Andross, transient persons, lately come into this town for the purpose of abiding therein, not having the town's consent therefor, that they depart the limits thereof with their children and others under their care within fifteen days, and make due return of your doings to the clerk of the town.
"Signed by the SELECTMEN."
After the Shays rebellion a number of persons were "warned" to depart the town to prevent them regaining a settlement.
The town owns a good hall at Whately hamlet, which was enlarged in 1871 to a commodious two-story building. The upper part is used for public meetings, and the lower story is divided into a school-room and town offices. In one of the latter is kept the town library, containing a few hundred volumes, and for the support of which a yearly appropriation of from $30 to $60 is made.
Whately has a poor-farm, valued at nearly $5000, and makes an annual allowance of from $1200 to $1000 for the maintenance of the poor of the town.
In 1879 the selectmen reported the assets of Whately at $6873.52, and the liabilities at $11,350.01.
In 1872 nearly $1300 was voted by the town to secure the publication of the Rev. J. H. Temple's History of Whately, read at the celebration, July 4, 1871, the first centennial of the town's existence.