Topsfield, Essex Co., Ma - Vital Records To The End Of 1849

Published By The Topsfield Historical Society
Topsfield, Mass. 1903

[Transcribed by Dave Swerdfeger]


THE following records of births, marriages and deaths include all entries to be found in the books of record kept by the town clerks; the church records now in the custody of the town clerk; the returns made to the Salem Quarterly Court; cemetery inscriptions; and a private record of deaths, covering the pe110d of 1790-1853, now in the possession of Mrs. George Warren Towne, of Danvers, Mass.

These records are printed in a condensed form in which every essential particular has been retained. All duplication of the town clerk's record has been eliminated, but differences in entry and other explanatory matter appear in brackets.

Parentheses are used only when they occur in the original record, usually enclosing the maiden name of a wife.

When places other than Topsfield and Massachusetts are named in the original records, they are given in the printed copy. Marriages and intentions of marriage are printed under the names of both parties. Double-dating is used in the months of January, February and March, p1101 to 1750; whenever it appears in the original and also whenever from the sequence of entry in the original the date may be easily determined. In all records the original spelling of names is followed and in the alphabetical arrangement the va1ious forms should be examined, as items about the same family may be found under different spellings.


The Indian name for this locality was "Shenewemedy," but the first settlers applied the name of "New Meadows" to the grant of land which was made by the General Court, Nov. 5, 1639, to inhabitants of Salem and Ipswich.
  • Oct. 18, 1648, the Court voted,----"The village at the newe medowes at Ipswich is named Toppesfeild."
  • Oct. 18, 1650, it was established as a town.
  • Oct. 19, 1658, and May 29, 1664, bounds between Salem and Topsfield were established.
  • May 5, 1682, bounds between Wenham and Topsfield were established.
  • April 28, 1684 and May 31, 1697, bounds between Ipswich and Topsfield were established.
  • Feb. 25, 1701 and June 17, 1731, bounds between Boxford and Topsfield were established.
  • June 20, 1728, part of the territory was included in the new town of Middleton.
  • Feb. 16, 1774, part of the town of Ipswich, lying on the south side of the river, was annexed to Topsfield.

The population of Topsfield at different periods was as follows:
  • 1765, 719;
  • 1776, 773;
  • 1790, 780;
  • 1800, 789;
  • 1810, 815;
  • 1820, 866;
  • 1830, 1010;
  • 1840, 1059;
  • 1850, 1170;
  • 1900, 1030.

  • a.----age.
  • abt.----about
  • b.----born.
  • bef.----before.
  • bp.----baptized.
  • C.R.----church record.
  • ch.----child.
  • Co.----county.
  • CT.R.----court record, Essex Co. Quarterly Court.
  • d.----daughter; day; died.
  • Dea.----deacon.
  • G.R.1.----gravestone record, Pine Grove Cemetery.
  • G.R.2.----gravestone record, South Side Cemetery.
  • h.----husband.
  • inf.----infant
  • int.----intention of marriage.
  • jr. ----junior.
  • m.----male; married; month.
  • P.R.1. ----private record of deaths, 1790-1853, now in the possession of Mrs. George Warren Towne.
  • P.R.2.----Henry Lake's account book, now in the possession of George Francis Dow.
  • s.----son
  • sr.----senior.
  • unm.------unmarried.
  • w.----wife.
  • wid.----widow.
  • widr.----widower.
  • y.-----year.

Blind Counter