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Marshfield
05658

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About Marshfield, Vermont
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Click for Marshfield, Vermont Forecast

Washington County
Chartered: October 16, 1782 (Vermont Legislative Action)
Area: 27,982 Acres = 43.72 Square Miles [ Size Rank: 79* ]
Coordinates (Geographic Center): N 44° 21' W 72°21'
Altitude: 850 feet ASL
Population (US Census, 2010): 1,588 [ Population Rank: 107* ]
Population Density (persons per square mile): 36.3 [ Density Rank: 124* ]
Full Census Info: Town
  County  State

*Area, Population and Density rankings refer to Marshfield's relative position among Vermont's 255 civic entities (9 cities, 242 towns, 4 gores and grants). Complete rankings are here.

The story of this town's origins is buried in the early records of the Vermont Governor and Council. In the 1780's, when Vermont was trying to strengthen her bargaining position with the Congress, she established "unions" with towns in New York and New Hampshire, areas in the two states that Vermont attempted to annex. Vermont's claims to territory west of Lake Champlain and east of the Connecticut River were spurious, but they did accomplish the young republic's objective: being noticed by the other states. At one point someone suggested that it might not be a bad idea to have the Natives on Vermont's side, so a grant of land, located in the Western, or New York, Union, was made to the Stockbridge tribe of the Mohawks.

The Stockbridge Mohawks had been converted to Christianity in the 1600's by John Eliot, and their community in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, was one of the earliest of what were referred to as "praying towns." Having been persuaded that they should forswear their old ways of life and stop making war on the white man, they were dispossessed from their Massachusetts lands rather early. The tribe had scattered through New York state and for many years had tried to get another grant of land for a permanent home.

On the other hand, Vermont's grant to the Stockbridge tribe in 1782 was as illegal as it was peculiar. The grant covered territory which was entirely within New York. In addition, the grant stipulated that the land could not be sold under any circumstances. However, they did sell and, furthermore, they found a buyer who was able to convince the Vermont Governor and Council to switch the grant to cover land that was within Vermont's boundaries.

The records show that Colonel Isaac Marsh of Stockbridge, Massachusetts, presented a bill of sale from eighteen Mohawks (then living in New Stockbridge, New York) to prove that he had paid £140 for the grant on in July, 1789. Colonel Marsh asked to have the grant confirmed to him under the name Marshfield, and to have it reassigned for the land in Vermont where the town is now. At first the Governor and Council demurred, saying there were conflicting claims to the Mohawks' original grant and also to the land Colonel Marsh was seeking. In time the other claims were resolved, and the grant was confirmed to Colonel Marsh and his fellow proprietors on in June, 1790.

Two years earlier, Joseph Marsh, a relative of the Colonel, had petitioned the Vermont legislature for a grant of land in the area that was subsequently granted as Marshfield. For some reason his request was not granted. However, he was one of the proprietors listed in the Marshfield grant, so apparently the family had sorted out the matter for themselves.

Material excerpted or adapted from Esther Munroe Swift's
Vermont Place-Names: Footprints of History
with the author's permission

Activities & Points of Interest
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Goings-on in and near Marshfield
Calendar of Events provided by the Vermont Department of Tourism & Marketing.

Marshfield Historical Society

Covered Bridge (With Google Maps and satellite images):
Martin     
Click Here for a map of all bridges in Washington County.

Contact Info
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Emergency Services (Statewide): 911
Hospital: Central Vermont Medical Center (Berlin) 802-229-9121
Town Clerk:  Bobbi Brimblecombe 122 School Street Marshfield, VT 05658
 802-426-3305
 T-F 8-12 and 12:30-4

Churches, Ministries, Charitables
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Roman Catholic : North American Martyrs
United Church of Christ : United Church of Christ
United Methodist : Marshfield United Church 802-454-7100

Neighboring Towns
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This is a basic geographic reference, intended to show relative location of adjacent towns. Directional accuracy is limited to 16 compass points. There isn't even the slightest suggestion that one can necessarily travel directly from one town to the next (as in "You can't get there from here").

Calais Woodbury Cabot
Marshfield
East Montpelier Peacham
Plainfield Groton

Utilities
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Notes about utilities:

  • One electric or phone company indicates that company serves the entire town. More than one of either indicates each serves different areas of town.
  • A listed cable company MIGHT mean the entire town is covered, but not necessarily. More than one listed indicates each serves different areas of town.
  • Unless your area is one served by Vermont's only gas utility, your only option is bottled gas (any dealer).
    Electric Green Mountain Power 888-835-4672
    Electric Washington Electric Co-op 800-932-5245
    Telephone Fairpoint 866-984-2001
    Telephone Fairpoint 866-984-2001

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    May 25, 2013