This is a historical and genealogical guide to the town of Marshfield. You will find help with town histories, vital records, city directories, cemetery records and cemeteries, churches, town records, newspapers, maps, and libraries.
Marshfield was an outgrowth of the settlement at Plymouth. By 1632, precincts were formed and this area was granted at Green's Harbor as Rexhame. The precinct soon became a town in 1640. This area was Plymouth Colony in the beginning. The town was placed in Plymouth County when counties were formed in 1685. For a brief time, the town was part of the Dominion of New England from 1686 to 1689. The town is still in Plymouth County, though was in limbo, until the "Colony" was merged with Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1691 that became the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
The basic data is from the "Historical Data" publication series with additions from various sources.
Marshfield was once called Greens Harbour and Rexhame/Wrexham.
Village or section names include Brant Rock, Center Marshfield, Duxbury Beach, Ferry Hill, Fieldston, Green Harbor, Marshfield Hills (previously East Marshfield), North Marshfield, Ocean Bluff, Rehame, Sea View, and Standish.
|2 Mar. 1640||Greens Harbour shall be a township ... and called Rexhame, but now Marshfield. [Ply. Col. Rec., 11: 37]|
|2 Mar. 1641||Rexham mentioned in a list of places for constables. [Ply. Col. Rec., 2: 9]|
|7 Sept. 1641||A rate list of towns as Rexhame / Marshfield with a line through the first name. [Ply. Col. Rec., 2: 9]|
|7 Mar. 1643||Marshfield borders established.|
|5 Mar. 1661||Land granted to Marshfield and Duxbury.|
|23 Feb. 1683||Border between Marshfield and Duxbury established.|
|21 Mar. 1712||Part of the town included in the new town of Pembroke.|
|8 Nov. 1782||Border between Marshfield and Scituate established.|
|10 Mar. 1788||Part of Scituate annexed.|
|14 June 1813||Border between Marshfield and Duxbury established.|
|11 May 1887||Border between Marshfield and Scituate established.|
|23 Mar. 1928||Border between Marshfield and Scituate established.|
Town HistoriesWorks written on the town include:
- Lysander S. Richards, History of Marshfield (Plymouth, Mass., 1901-1905), 2v.
Digital versions at Internet Archive (v. 1 only and Google Books (v. 1, v. 2, and Ancestry ($), and transcribed only at PlymouthColony.net.
WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL books 974.482/M3 H2r v. # or film 1035739 Items 3-4.
- Alden, Ames (Eames), Baker, Bates, Bourne, Carver, Church, Clift, Damon, Emery, Ewell, Ford, Gardner, Hagar, Hall, Hatch, Henry, Keene, Kent, Lapham, Leonard, Little, Macomber, Nelson, Oakman, Peterson, Phillips, Porter, Richards, Rogers, Sherman, Sprague, Sylvester, Thomas, Tilden, Tolman, Trouant, Walker, Weatherbee, White, Whiting, Willard, Williamson, Winslow, and Wright.
- "Heads of Families in Mr. Shaw's Precinct Marshfield, Mass., October, 1765" in Pilgrims Notes and Queries, 5 : 41-43.
- Marshfield, 70 ̊-40 ́W:42 ̊-5 ́N N; the autobiography of a Pilgrim town (Marshfield, Mass., 1940), xix, 334 pp.
No digital versions online.
WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/M3 H2m (1956 edition).
- Cynthia Hagar Krusell, Marshfield: A Town of Villages 1640-1990 (Marshfield Hills, Mass., 1990), 234 pp.
WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/M3 H2k.
- Marshfield Wikipedia page.
The town's vital records are available in many locations:
- Marshfield Town Clerk's Office
870 Moraine Street
Marshfield MA 02050
- Microfilm of the originals created by the Family History Library, Marshfield town and vital records, 1645-1875, FHL films 417925-417928.
These records are browsable (i.e. not indexed as of Nov. 2012) on FamilySearch.
- Microfiche of the originals created by Archive Publishing covering vital records, 1631-1890, on 67 fiche. Part of Massachusetts, Town Vital Collections, 1620–1988 at Ancestry ($); Index
- Official state copy of vital records starting in 1841:
220 Morrissey Blvd.
Boston MA 02125
Hours and Directions
See the online guide for more information.
- Robert M. Sherman and Ruth Wilder Sherman, Vital Records of Marshfield, Massachusetts, to the year 1850 (Warwick, R.I., 1970).
These volumes were microfilmed by the Family History Library (FHL film 496621 Item 2).
Digital database at American Ancestors ($).
WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.482/M3 V2s.
[Missing from the published vital records is one marriage from county court records for 1692 published in Pilgrim Notes and Queries, 3 : 120-122 at 122.]
- Donald and Rebecca Ford, "Marshfield Marriages from Town Reports" [1865-1900, alphabetically] in the Mayflower Descendants serialized from v. 35  to v. 41 . See online links from the Mayflower Descendants contents page.
- Marshfield town and vital records, 1645-1875, are browsable (i.e. not indexed as of Nov. 2012) on FamilySearch.
Marshfield was published in 1894, 1915, 1918, 1926, 1962, 1967, 1970.
The Library of Congress (Washington, D.C.) has one of the largest collections of city directories in the country. They are likely to own most of the years listed above. Their collection is in microfiche, microfilm, and books, but there is no online inventory of their holdings except for microfilm. See their guide online.
- Ancestry ($) has 1962, 1967, 1970.
- Boston Public Library has 1894, 1915, 1918, 1926.
- Family History Library (Salt Lake City) has 1894, 1915, 1918, 1926 (with other towns) on FHL various film records.
- fold3 ($) has none.
- Massachusetts State Library has 1894, 1915, 1918, 1926.
- New England Historic Genealogical Society (Boston) ($) has 1894, 1915, 1918, 1926, 1962, 1967, 1970.
The following is a list of cemeteries in present-day Marshfield. For the location of cemeteries, see PlymouthColony website. For more details regarding these cemeteries, see the state guide under cemeteries for books on the subject.
- Baker Family Cemetery, 1816.
- Cedar Grove / Congregational Church Cemetery, 1721. (A, C, D-v.12-13, F)
- Centre Marshfield Cemetery, 1740. (B, C, D-v.8, E, F)
- Chapel Cemetery, 1793. (B, E, F)
- Congregational Church Cemetery at Marshfield Hills, 18th century. (B, E, F)
- Couch Cemetery, 1960.
- Dingley Family Cemetery, 1809.
- Howland Cemetery, 1797.
- Little / Sea View Cemetery, 1718. (B, E, F)
- Magoun Cemetery, 1840.
- Marshfield Hills Cemetery, 1729. (A, B, C, D-v.9, E, F)
- Plainville Cemetery, 1788. (A, B, C, D-v. 14, E, F)
- Adam Rogers Family Tomb, 1813.
- Two Mile Cemetery, 1801. (A,, B, D-v.10, E, F)
- Winslow Cemetery, 1680. (A, C, D-v.10, E, F)
Abstracts of the cemeteries above are marked and keyed to:
(A). New England Historic Genealogical Society Manuscripts Dept.
(B). Charles M. Thatcher, Old Cemeteries of Southeastern Massachusetts (Middleborough, Mass., 1995). WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 974.4 V3.
(C). Daughters of the American Revolution GRC v. 86.
(D). Mayflower Descendant (journal).
(E). Robert M. Sherman and Ruth Wilder Sherman, Vital Records of Marshfield, Massachusetts, to the year 1850 (Warwick, R.I., 1970). [see above for details] (F). Christian V. G. S. Kimball, "Marshfield Cemeteries Through 1950" (typ., 1997). [Note: Computer printout - copy at the Mass. Society of Mayflower Descendants library and with editor of this page]. WorldCat (Other Libraries).
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.
- First Congregational Church, 1632, records good starting in 1696.
Records on microfilm, 1696-1920, FHL films 417929-417930 and published volume 1, 1696-1747, in Mayflower Descendant, 11 : 36-39, 121-123; 31 : 117-124, 161-171; 33 : 12-21.
- Society of Friends, 1692, records good (part of Pembroke Monthly Meeting that was attached to the New Bedford Monthly Meeting).
- Second Congregational Society (Unitarian), 1738-1916, records good.[Records at the Marshfield Historical Society]
- Protestant Episcopal Church, 1775-1867, records at St. Andrew's Church.
- Baptist Church, 1788, records good.
- Methodist Episcopal Church, 1813, records incomplete, starting in 1825.
- Baptist Church in North Marshfield, 1833, records good.
- Second Congregational Church, East Marshfield, 1835, records good.
- Grace Chapel (Unitarian), 1882, records good.
- Our Lady of the Assumption, n.d.
- Christian Science Church, n.d.
- North Community Church, 1928.
- North River Community Church, 1989.
- St. Ann's By the Sea, n.d.
- St. Christine's Parish, n.d.
- Sanctuary, n.d.
- Shirat Hayam, 1996.
- Trinity Episcopal Church at Marshfield Hills, n.d.
- Victory Baptist Church, n.d.
- First Congregational Church, 1632, records good starting in 1696.
- Marshfield Mail / South Shore News, 1964-1965.
- Marshfield Mariner, 1976-present.
- Marshfield Reporter, 1987-present.
Libraries and Historical Societies
The following is list of research facilities in town:
Clift Rodgers Free Library
540 Pleasant Street
Marshfield MA 02051
[Note: Not a research library]
Marshfield Historical Society
65 Webster Street
PO Box 1244
Marshfield MA 02050