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United States Gotoarrow.png Massachusetts Gotoarrow.png Plymouth Gotoarrow.png Brockton


Brief History

Brockton was originally part of old Bridgewater before 1821, and that being a plantation granted to Duxbury in 1645. Settlement in old Bridgewater started in 1650, but the North Parish (now Brockton) was not until 1700. These settlers were from the West Parish (now West Bridgewater). The parishes or precincts were made official in 1716, as the South and North Precinct (the latter being present-day West Bridgewater and Brockton). The North Parish (Brockton) was organized in 1739 and the first church in the area was established.

Historical Data[1]

Associated names

Brockton was first known as North Bridgewater from 1821 to 1874. The Indians called this place Titicut or Nunketest.

Village or section names include Belleview Park, Brockton Heights, Bumpus Corner, Bush, Campello [formerly Plain Village], Cary Hill, Centreville, Clifton Heights, Douglas Park, Ellis Park, Elmhurst, Factory Village [also Sprague’s Village], Happy Hollow, Highland Terrace, Hovenden Park, Intervale Park, Leyden Park, Marshall’s Corner, Menlo Park, Montello, Morse’s Corner, Oak Hill, Pleasant Park, Pleasantville, Prospect Hill, Prospect Park, Porter’s Pass, Rangeley Park, Ridge Hill, Salisbury Heights, Sawtelleville, Shaw’s Corner, Sunnyside, Sylvester Corner, Thomaston Park, Tower Hill, Walnut Bottom, West Shares [or North-West Bridgewater], Wheeler Park, Winchester Park, and Winter’s Corner.

Border changes
Dates Events
15 June 1821 North Bridgewater established from the northwestern part of old Bridgewater.
26 Jan. 1825 Border between North Bridgewater and West Bridgewater established.
5 May 1874 Town name changed to Brockton.
24 Apr. 1875 Part annexed to South Abington [now Whitman] and parts of East Bridgewater and South Abington annexed.
9 Apr. 1881 Brockton incorporated as a city.
1 Mar. 1894 Part of West Bridgewater annexed.

Town Histories

Works written on the town include:

  • Moses Carey, A Genealogy of the Families who have settled in the North Parish of Bridgewater, to which is added an historical sketch of North Bridgewater (Boston, 1824), 48 pp.
There is a transcription online at PlymouthColony and digital versions at Internet Archive and Google Books. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/B1 D2.
  • Bradford Kingman, “Marriages in the North Parish of Bridgewater (Now North Bridgewater), From January 1, 1742, to January, 1780” in the New England Historical and Genealogical Register, 19 [1865]: 200-204.
  • Bradford Kingman, ""History of North Bridgewater, Plymouth County, Massachusetts, from its first settlement to the present time, with family registers"" (Boston, 1866), xii, 696 pp.
The family sketches include (and not in strict alphabetical order in the book): Alden, Allen, Ames, Atherton, Bacon, Bartlett, Bassett, Battles, Baxendale, Baxter, Beal, Bennett, Billings, Bird, Blanchard, Borden, Bradford, Brett, Bryant, Bunker, Burke, Burns, Burrill, Carr, Cary, Chesman, Clapp, Cobb, Cole, Cooper, Copeland, Crafts, Crosby, Cowell, Crocker, Cross, Curtis, Cushman, Dailey, Dickerman, Dike, Drake, Dunbar, Dunham, Eames, Easton, Eaton, Eddy, Edson, Emery, Faunce, Faxon, Field, Fiske, Fitz, Ford, Freeman, French, Fuller, Fullerton, Gardner, Gifford, Glover, Goddard, Goldthwaite, Gorham, Graves, Gray, Green, Groves, Gurney, Hall, Hamilton, Hancock, Harden, Harlow, Harris, Hartwell, Hatch, Hathaway, Haven, Hayden, Hayward, Henry, Herrod, Hervey, Hobart, Holbrook, Hollis, Hollywood, Holmes, Howard, Humphrey, Hunt, Jackson, Jameson, Johnson, Jones, Joslyn, Keith, Kimball, Kingman, Knapp, Landers, Lathrop, Leach, Lemmar, Leonard, Lewis, Lilley, Lincoln, Littlefield, Loring, Lucas, Lyon, Manly, Marshall, Mason, May, McBride, McLaughlin, Merchant, Merritt, Morey, Morrison, Morse, Morton, Nash, Noyes, O’Neil, Orcutt, Orr, Packard, Paine, Perkins, Perry, Peterson, Pettingill, Phillips, Pope, Porter, Pratt, Proctor, Puffer, Reed, Remick, Reynolds, Rhodes, Richards, Richardson, Richmond, Ring, Ritchie, Robbins, Robinson, Ryder, Sanford, Sawyer, Severance, Sewall, Shaw, Shedd, Shepardson, Shiverick, Simmons, Skinner, Smith, Snell, Snow, Soule, Southworth, Spaulding, Spear, Sprague, Stevens, Stoddard, Stranger, Studley, Sturtevant, Sylvester, Tarbet, Thayer, Thompson, Tilden, Tilton, Tirrell, Torrey, Tower, Tribou, Trow, Tuck, Vincent, Wade, Waldo, Warren, Washburn, Waterman, Watkins, West, Wheeler, White, Whitman, Whitmarsh, Whitney, Whittemore, Whitten, Wilbor, Wild, Wilder, Williams, Willis, Wilson, Wood.
Digital versions at Internet Archive (v. 1 and v. 2), Google Books, and Ancestry ($). WorldCat (Other Libraries).
  • Bradford Kingman, History of Brockton, Plymouth County, Massachusetts, 1656-1894 (Syracuse, N.Y., 1895), 814, 122 pp.
The second part is biographical sketches and does not duplicate the previous book’s genealogies.
A digital version at Internet Archive. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/B1 H2.
See Elizabeth Hayward, comp., A Genealogist’s Index of Bradford Kingman’s “History of Brockton …” (West Hartford, Conn., 1957), 15 pp.
WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/B1 H2kb index.
  • A Coppying Out of ye Olde Recordes Beginning With ye 4th Chh of Christ in Bridgewater - 1740 ([Brockton, Mass.], 1980), 837 + [80] pp.
These are the verbatim transcript of the Fourth Parish Church of Bridgewater that became the First Parish Church of North Bridgewater in 1821 when that part of town broken off to form a separate town and that town was renamed Brockton in 1874.
WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/B1 K2c.

Vital Records

The town's vital records are available in many locations:

Original records
45 School St.
Brockton MA 02301
Phone 508-580-7114
  • Microfiche of the originals created by the Holbrook Research Institute covering town records that included vital records and a few other town records, 1712-1892, on 7 fiche. Soon to be part of ‘’Massachusetts, Town Vital Collections, 1620–1988’‘ at Ancestry ($); Index
  • Official state copy of vital records started in 1841. See the guide to the state for more information here.
Published records
  • Vital Records of Brockton Massachusetts to the year 1850 (Boston, 1911).
This includes, in part, church records from the Fourth Church of Christ of Bridgewater [now the First Congregational Church of Brockton] (C.R.1), New Jerusalem Church (C.R.2), Methodist Episcopal Church of North West Bridgewater [now the Pearl Street Methodist Episcopal Church of Brockton] (C.R.3), South Congregational Church of Campello (C.R.4), and Second Methodist Episcopal Church of Brockton (C.R.5). Deaths are included from the Main Street Cem. (G.R.1), Summer Street Cem. (G.R.2), Leach Cem. (G.R.3), West Street Cem. (G.R.4), Coweeset Cem. (G.R.5), North End or Ashland Cem. (G.R.6), Union Cem. (G.R.7), Melrose Cem. (G.R.8), Thayer Cem. (G.R.9), Old Cem. (G.R.10), and private cem. on Ames St. (G.R.11).
These volumes were microfilmed by the Family History Library, FHL film 873755 Item 2 and in digital version at Internet Archive and Google Books. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/B1 V2v.


The following is a list of cemeteries in present-day Brockton. For more details regarding these cemeteries, see the state guide under cemeteries for books on the subject. For the locations of these cemeteries, see PlymouthColony.

  1. Ames Street Cemetery, 1778. (A, B)
  2. Ashland / North End / East Ashland Cemetery, 1681. (A, B)
  3. Calvary Cemetery, 1890.
  4. Coweeset Cemetery, 1792. (A, B, C)
  5. First Parish / Main Street Cemetery, 1731. (A)
  6. Leach Cemetery, 1768. (A, online Transcription)
  7. Melrose Cemetery, 1761. (A, B, C)
  8. Mulberry Street Cemetery, 1820. (A, B, C) [All exhumed and moved to Ashland and Melrose cems.]
  9. Pleasant Street / Thayer Cemetery, 1814. (A, B, C)
  10. Plymouth Rock Jewish Cemeteries, 1906. (B) [Inc. Agudas Achim, Cehvra Telium, Temple Beth Emunah, Temple Israel cems.]
  11. St. Patrick’s Cemetery, 1857.
  12. Snell / West Street / Old Cemetery, 1747. (A, B, C)
  13. Thompson / Summer Street Cemetery, 1796. (A, B)
  14. Union Cemetery, 1790. (A, B)

Abstracts of the cemeteries above are marked and keyed to:
(A). Vital Records of Brockton, Massachusetts, to the year 1850 (Boston, 1911) [see links above under Vital Records].
(B). New England Historic Genealogical Society, Manuscripts Dept., Boston, Mass.
(C). Charles M. Thatcher, Old Cemeteries of Southeastern Massachusetts (Middleborough, Mass., 1995). WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.4 V3.


The following is a list of churches established in town in order of organization date (if known) and condition of records in the 1889 survey if listed. [Note: No churches organized after 1889 in this list.]

  1. First Parish Church (initially call the Fourth Church of Christ in Bridgewater), 1740, records published (see above).
  2. Second Congregational Church, 1825-1831, location of records unknown.
  3. First [later West] Methodist Episcopal Church, West Shares or Northwest Bridgewater, 1831, records good.
  4. New Jerusalem Church, 1832, records good.
  5. South Congregational Church at Campello, 1837, records good.
  6. Society of Friends, 1838, not in 1889 inventory.
  7. Second [later Central] Methodist Episcopal Church, Centreville, 1842, records start in 1851, good.
  8. First Baptist Church, 1850-1855, location of records unknown.
  9. Porter Evangelical Church, Centreville, 1850, records good.
  10. St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, Centreville, 1856, records good.
  11. First Universalist Church [also Church of the Disciples], 1857-1875, records with Unitarian Church in 1889.
  12. Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1867, records good.
  13. St. Paul’s Protestant Episcopal Church, 1875, records good.
  14. Baptist Church, Brockton, 1876, records good.
  15. Methodist Episcopal Church, Campello, 1879, records good.
  16. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, 1880, records good.
  17. Swedish Evangelical Independent Church, 1881, records good.
  18. Unity Church [Unitarian], 1881, records good.
  19. Swedish Baptist Church, Campello, 1883, records good.
  20. Free Baptist Church, 1884, records good.
  21. Universalist Church, 1884, records good.

Several of the above churches merged and are listed beyond in their present name:


Bridgewater Patriot and Old Colony Gazette, 1835-uuuu.

  1. Old Colony Reporter, 1850-1851.
  2. North Bridgewater Gazette, 1851-1874.
  3. Brockton Weekly Gazette, 1874-1891.
  4. The Laborer, 1884?-1887.
  5. Brockton Weekly Enterprise, 1887-1888.
  6. Brockton Gazette, 1892-1893.
  7. Brockton Weekly Gazette, 1893-1894.
  8. Brockton Times, 1895-1934.
  9. Brockton Daily Evening Enterprise, 1906-1934.
  10. Brockton Daily Evening Enterprise and Brockton Times, 1934-1978.
  11. Brockton Enterprise, 1979-1981.
  12. Enterprise, 1982-present.

Libraries and Historical Societies

The following is list of research facilities in town:

Brockton Public Library Historical Room
304 Main St.
Brockton MA 02301
Phone 508-580-7890

Brockton Historical Society
216 N. Pearl St.
Brockton MA 02301
Phone 508-583-1039


  1. William Francis Galvin, Historical Data Relating to Counties, Cities and Towns in Massachusetts (Boston, new ed., 1997), 11. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.4 H2h 1997

--Yourgenealogist 22:00, 12 April 2012 (UTC)

  • This page was last modified on 12 April 2012, at 21:04.
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