Joseph Dow's History of Hampton: TOWN LINES

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Meanwhile, perplexities had arisen within this province, respecting the boundaries of the several towns.

June 8, 1701, the House of Representatives passed a bill, designed to quiet landholders in the possession of their lands, though town lines should be altered.

Two days later, a committee of four, of whom Capt. Henry Dow was one, reported on the bounds of Hampton, as defined by papers examined.

In July, another committee, Vaughan of Portsmouth, Gilman and Leavitt of Exeter, and Dow and Tuck of Hampton, appointed to run the Exeter and Hampton line, made their report.

August 5, the selectmen of Hampton sent a petition, which suggests the probability that alterations had been intended in her boundaries. If so, the petition was respected; for an act, passed soon after, left the boundaries unchanged. The petition stated that, though it had long been the desire of the people of Hampton that the bounds of the town might be settled, yet it was that it might be according to the former settlement, by the General Court at Boston fifty years before; but that now, a committee, appointed by the court, had run a line from Winnicut river mill to the old bound tree by Ass brook, which would be very injurious, if confirmed, because, in 1670, several men had lots granted, "beginning within two miles of Exeter old meeting-house, so all the way to the sea-side;" and these lots had been again laid out and confirmed in 1700, and some of them had "been bought and sold and deeds made of the same;" but this line lately run, would take off from Hampton, "all the whole lotts of some and part of other some to ye number of about 40," besides some lots of meadow ground. Therefore they prayed that the old bounds might be confirmed by a law--in other words, that a charter might be granted.

The Act referred to was passed September 12, 1701, [Provincial Papers III:226.] entitled: "An Act to prevent contention & controversie that may arise concerning the bounds of the respective Towns wth in this Province." Then are described the boundaries of the several towns--those of this town, as follows, constituting the charter of Hampton. [These are the bounds of the originaltown,--the grant of Kingston (incorporated in 1694) being considered forfeited, because the few settlers "did for some pretences or other withdraw and remove in a disorderly way from said Kingstown." Upon a petition for the resettling of the town in 1705, leave was given them to renew their grant, on condition that not less than thirty families return, provide a parsonage and settle a minister. [Provincial Papers IX:433.]

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