HAuburn: OBG

Notes and documents relating to the Old Burying Ground,
Auburn, Massachusetts

                                                                    {Contact: jjhartwell@yahoo.com)
NOTE: The following information is gleaned from the surviving precinct and town records. The originals are kept at the Auburn Town Clerk's Office, but microfilms of four of the volumes are available at the Auburn Room of the Auburn Public Library. They are Vols. I, II, and III, of the Town Clerk's records, being principally warrants and minutes of Precinct and Town Meetings, together with some associated reports and documents; and "Miscellaneous Records", a collection of loose documents archivally preserved and bound in a single volume.

     It was at a Precinct Meeting held on 16 January 1775, "at the residence of Thomas Drury jr, innholder" that the first steps were taken "to pick upon a burying yard" for the new parish. A Committee of five leading citizens was chosen to look into the matter: Thomas Drury, William Phips, Daniel Boyden, John Hart, and Benjamin Carter. The Committee was directed to have its report ready for a meeting to be held at 9 a.m. on January 23rd.
     For some reason, the report was delayed until March 14, when it was read before the first Precinct Meeting to be held in the newly-built Meeting House. Preserved among the "Miscellaneous records", is the original report, quoted in full below:
"Worcester march th 14, 1775 The Report of the following Commity Excepted--
    " We the Subscribers being appointed a Commity by the Parish lately made out of Worcester & the towns ajasent to find a suitable place for a Burying yard for Sd parish Do report as follows
"viz that up on a Diligent & faithfull tryal of ye Ground near the Senter of Sd parish we find the most Suitable place for a Burying yard in our opinion to be the following
"viz begining at hepe of Stones which we have maid on the Roade leading from the meeting house in Sd parish to Oxford on the Southerly Corner of Mr Thomas Drurys Cleard Land there thense in breth extending northwesterly to a heep of Stones made by Sd Drury being as we think near eleven rods thence to Extend in Bredth towards Said Meeting house near eleven rods wich will make a Square Containing 3/4 of an acre or further as the parish may see meet.
                                       "Thomas Drury    ]
                                         Daniel Boyden   ]        Commity
                                         William Phips    ]
                                         Benjamin Carter ]

The Hearse House
4 November 1805
     "Voted that the town will procure a Beir to carry the Dead on at Funerals.
     "Voted that the House for the reception of the Hearse shall be of the following description, Viz:
"Fifteen feet long & ten feet wide, the Posts Seven feet high, the building to be of good Oak timber to be covered with inch pine boards plained & matched, the roof braced with Yellow pine ot Oak boards, the roof to be barked and shingled with a Cornice under the Eaves. The house to be painted red except the Cornice & weather boards, which shall be painted white, -- the floor of the building to be plank.
     "Voted to set the aforesaid building on the South east corner of the burying place.
     "By Vote chose Thomas Drury & Joseph Stone a Committee to supervise the building of the aforesaid House.
     "Also Voted that the aforesaid building shall be completed by the first day of September 1806.
     "By Vote, Granted the sum of one hundred & ten dollars for the purpose of defraying the expense of the Hearse, Beir, & building for depositing the same in, & for tacking on the Hearse &c &c"


Hillside Notes