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flag  History of Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

Journey back in time to Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

Visit Dudley, Massachusetts, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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Dudley, Massachusetts, USA - Nichols College, Dudley, MA  Nichols College is a private, four-year, not-for-profit, coeducational college located in Dudley, Massachusetts. Found

Dudley, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA

Dudley includes: Ram's Horn, Tufts, Garden City, and Jericho.
netronline.com

Dudley is situated in the southern part of Worcester County, near the Connecticut border. It covers an area of approximately 22 square miles (57 square kilometers). The town of Dudley was first settled in the early 18th century and was officially incorporated in 1732. It was named after Governor Thomas Dudley, who was an early colonial leader in Massachusetts.


There is MUCH more to discover about Dudley, Massachusetts, USA. Read on!

Dudley Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

Nichols College, Dudley, MA
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Nichols College, Dudley, MA

"Nichols College is a private, four-year, not-for-profit, coeducational college located in Dudley, Massachusetts. Founded in 1815 as Nichols Academy, Nichols College offers twelve specializations in its business program, five majors in its liberal arts program, and an Educator Preparation Program for middle and secondary education. The College offers bachelor's and master's degrees as well as certificate programs..." wikipedia
Stevens Linen Mills
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Stevens Linen Mills

"Stevens Linen, the first linen textile mill in the United States, was formed in 1846 in Dudley Massachusetts. Built from granite quarried on site, the original mill (which is one of the oldest remaining mills in New England) still stands today. Products have varied throughout the years, shaped by such diverse elements as fashion and the demands of war. Cotton duck, shock absorber cord, linen fire hoses, heavy duty twine, upholstery material and wall coverings are just some of the products manufactured throughout the years. The most enduring product is the Linen Calendar Towel, invented by the mill manager in the 1950’s..." www.stevenslinen.com
Read more about Henry Hale STEVENS photo of ancestor
Memorial Church, 1910

The First Congregational Church, UCC of Dudley, also known as Dudley Hill C
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Memorial Church, 1910

The First Congregational Church, UCC of Dudley, also known as Dudley Hill Church, dates back to the incorporation of the town of Dudley in 1732. During that time, a town could only be incorporated if a church were established. The first meeting house, known today as the Carter
house and standing at the intersection of Dudley-Oxford and Ramshorn Roads, served as a meeting place for both worship and town meetings for a few years, until a second meeting house was built on land donated by Nipmuc Indian John Pegan at the top of Dudley Hill. In 1824, the meeting house was dismantled, the wood from which was used to construct a white clapboard church on the same site. This church stood only 66 years before it was consumed by fire in 1890.

Later that same year, the present day church was constructed in the same location, as a gift by Hezekiah Conant, a local scientist, inventor and philanthropist. Its tower houses one of Hezekiah's unique clocks, a clock... Read MORE...
Dudley Hill Inn, Dudley, MA

A 1908 postcard depicting the Dudley Hill Inn. The building was later
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Dudley Hill Inn, Dudley, MA

A 1908 postcard depicting the Dudley Hill Inn. The building was later taken over by Nichols College and converted to Conrad Hall which houses faculty offices.
Street View, Dudley Hill, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Street View, Dudley Hill, Mass.
Academy Buildings, The Inn, and Conant Memorial Church, Dudley, Mass., 1904
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Academy Buildings, The Inn, and Conant Memorial Church, Dudley, Mass., 1904
View from Conant Memorial Church, Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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View from Conant Memorial Church, Dudley, Mass.
View from Church Tower, 1907
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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View from Church Tower, 1907
Nichols Academy and Inn, Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Nichols Academy and Inn, Dudley, Mass.
Bird's Eye View Dudley Hill, Dudley, Mass
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Bird's Eye View Dudley Hill, Dudley, Mass
High Pond and the Birches, Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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High Pond and the Birches, Dudley, Mass.
Sunset Camp, Echo Lake, Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Sunset Camp, Echo Lake, Dudley, Mass.
Old mansion in Dudley, around 1910
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Old mansion in Dudley, around 1910
Dudley Hill, Mass., 1911
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Dudley Hill, Mass., 1911
Discover you family history through historical newspapers at Newspapers.com
Budleigh Hall, Residence of S. M. Conant, 1912
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Budleigh Hall, Residence of S. M. Conant, 1912
Read more about Samuel Morris CONANT photo of ancestor
Cow pasture in Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Cow pasture in Dudley, Mass.
Lily pond in Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Lily pond in Dudley, Mass.

Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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"Old Bright"
Hayden, and Pierpont Ponds in Distance
Dudley Hill
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Dudley Hill
Magiera's Dairy bottle cap
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Magiera's Dairy bottle cap
Intervale Manor, 1940

Intervale Manor was a large private home in the late 19th century when the
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Intervale Manor, 1940

Intervale Manor was a large private home in the late 19th century when the two Stevens sisters (Gertrude and Celia) and their mother (Gertrude Olney Stevens) made this parlor throw. In the 1940s Intervale Manor became a tearoom, operated by a family member and known for its hospitality, exceptionally fine food, spacious grounds, and comfortable accommodations.

Eben Stevens (husband/ father of the above) was a founder of Intervale Textile Mills in nearby Quinebaug, Connecticut.

americanhistory.si.edu
Read more about Gertrude Germaine OLNEY photo of ancestor
Ziemba Dairy bottle cap
Albert S. Ziemba family business
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Ziemba Dairy bottle cap
Albert S. Ziemba family business
Read more about Albert ZIEMBA
D & W Auto Body, Inc.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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D & W Auto Body, Inc.
Ruda Dairy, Inc.
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Ruda Dairy, Inc.
Compliments of Your Tydol Flying A Dealer
Dudley Service Station
A. J. Stawasz, Prop.
Lower Schof
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Compliments of Your Tydol Flying A Dealer
Dudley Service Station
A. J. Stawasz, Prop.
Lower Schofield Ave., Dudley, Mass.
Antonio's Barber Shop
Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Antonio's Barber Shop

Discover Dudley: History, News, Travel, and Stories

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1731 – 1732 - Dudley set off from Oxford

www.oxford300.com/ oxford_history.aspx
June 20, 1732 - First Town Meeting held at Carter House in Dudley

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
1734 - Meeting House built in Dudley

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
1760 - Capt. Joshua Healy House built in Dudley

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
1776 - George Washington Slept Here
In April 1776, on his way to New York City from Boston after his victory in the Siege of Boston, General George Washington camped in the town of Dudley with the Continental Army along what is now a portion of Route 31 near the Connecticut border. During the trip, it is rumored that a "large cache" of captured and recovered British weaponry and supplies was ordered "concealed in the grounds" in the rural area along the route. The cache, hidden to resupply reinforcements from Massachusetts or to cover a retreat from the south, were never used or recorded as having been recovered.

wikipedia.org
1804 - Black Tavern built on Dudley Hill

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
1815 - Nichols Academy was founded by Amasa Nichols as a Universalist Church institution
He resigned from the board in 1823 amid personal financial problems and because of the school's changing religious affiliation.
wikipedia.org

Read more about Amasa NICHOLS


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1824 - Congregational Church built in Dudley

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
1839 - Dudley
Dudley, Massachusetts
Worcester county. This good farming town was called by the Indians Chabanakongkomum. It is finely watered by the Quinnebaug and other streams and possesses excellent mill privileges. During the year ending April 1, 1837, the value of the manufactures of Dudley amounted to $346,826. The articles manufactured were woolen goods, leather, shoes, scythe snaiths, chairs, and cabinet ware. The value of wool grown was $1,585.

Dudley lies 55 miles S.W. from Boston, 18 S. from Worcester, and 34 N.W. from Providence. Incorporated, 1731. Population, 1837, 1,415.
The New England Gazetteer containing descriptions of all the states, counties and towns in New England: also descriptions of the principal mountains, rivers lakes, capes, bays, harbors, islands and fashionable resorts within that territory. Alphabetically arranged. By John Hayward, author of the Columbian Traveller, Religious Creeds, &c. &c. Boston: John Hayward. Boyd & White, Concord, N.H. 1839
1845 - DUDLEY. [Pop. 1,352. Inc 1732.]
This township was granted to Paul and William Dudley, of Roxbury, sons of Governor Dudley.

Dudley once contained part of Southbridge and Webster.

The land is fertile, and well watered by several ponds and by French and Quinebaug rivers.

Woollen cloths and shoes are the principal articles manufactured.

Distance from Worcester, 18 miles ; from Boston, 60.
An Elementary Geography for Massachusetts Children by William Bentley Fowle and Asa Fitz, 1845
1845 - Methodist Church built on Dudley Hill

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
1848 - Dudley
This township was originally granted to the Hon. Messrs. Paul and William Dudley of Roxbury, while yet in the possession of the aborigines, the tribe which was known by the name of the Pegan tribe. It was incorporated by the general court in 1731, and the name of Dudley was given to it as a token of respect to the above mentioned men, who were principal proprietors of the soil, and great benefactors to the first settlers in their infancy. The church was founded here in 1732, and the Rev. Perley Howe was ordained their first minister in 1735. He was dismissed in 1743, and the next year Rev. Charles Gleason was ordained, who continued the faithful minister till his death, in 1790. The Rev. Joshua Johnson was installed as successor to Mr. Gleason in 1790. His successors have been Rev. Abiel Williams, ordained in 1799, and Rev. James H. Francis, in 1831.

The central part of Dudley is situated on a commanding eminence, called Dudley Hill. The village consists of two churches, an... Read MORE...

1859
DUDLEY, a township of Worcester co., in the state of Massachusetts, U.S., 58 m. SW of Boston, watered by Quinnebaug and French rivers, and in the S by a pond nearly 5 m. in length. Pop. in 1840, 1,352.
A Gazetteer of the World: Or, Dictionary of Geographical Knowledge, Publisher A. Fullarton, 1859
1868 - Hon. Wm. Hancock died at his residence, in Dudley, Massachusetts, on the 14th inst, aged 76 years. Colonel Hancock was a lineal descendant of John Hancock of Revolutionary memory.

The Progress-Index
Petersburg, Virginia
June 19, 1868
1873 - A French woman and child in Dudley, Massachusetts, were so badly burned by an explosion of kerosene oil, Saturday night that both died, another child cannot recover.

The Daily Milwaukee News
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
July 8, 1873
1875 - A Useful Sort of Pastor
The Boston Traveller tells a story on Mr. Williams, the ancient pastor of Dudley, Massachusetts, who was a practical christian. One sultry summer Sunday, says the legend, the sound of distant thunder heralded the approach of a shower. Suddenly the preacher stopped, and peering from side to side through the church windows, as if observing the tokens of a change in the weather, he quietly said: "Brethren I observed that our brother Crosby is not prepared for the rain. I think it our duty to help our brother Crosby to get in his hay before the shower." With that he descended from the pulpit, and with several of his bearers, proceeded to Mr. Crosby's hay field where they worked half an hour, or until the hay was housed. The staunch old clergyman then returned to the church and resumed his discourses.
Williamsport Sun-Gazette
Williamsport, Pennsylvania
June 15, 1875
1885 - Nichols Academy Boarding House built in 1885.
It later became the Dudley Inn and then a Nichols College dormitory.
A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976
Dudley Massachusetts, 1890
Dudley is a pleasant and prosperous town lying in the southwesterly part of Worcester County, on the Southbridge Branch of the New York and New England Railroad, which has a station at West Dudley, 67 miles from Boston. The eastern part of the town is accommodated at the eastern border by the Webster station on the Norwich and Worcester Railroad. The town is bounded by Charlton and Oxford on the north, the latter and Webster on the east, Southbridge on the west, and Thompsonville, in Connecticut, on the south. The assessed area is 12,870 acres, of which 4,800 are woodland.

The Quinnebaug River crosses the southwestern part, receiving an affluent from the hills. Here its valley is broadened, affording ample space about the mills for the village of West Dudley. The southeastern part is an extended plain, on which are strung out a group of six large and small ponds, whose outlet enters the French River at Merinoville. The latter forms the eastern line of the town, and in this limit... Read MORE...

1890 - Congregational Church destroyed by fire in Dudley. Conant Memorial Church built.

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976

Read more about Hezekiah CONANT photo of ancestor
1890 - Died in Her 100th Year
Mrs. Elizabeth Eaton Larned, of Pawtucket, R.I. is dead. She was the daughter of John Eliot Eaton, and Elizabeth Davis Eaton, and was born in Dudley Mass., January 7, 1790. Her father was a surgeon in the Revolutionary army, and at the close of the war he removed with his family from Spencer to Dudley, Mass., where they remained for years. In 1810 she was married to Morris Larned, of Dudley, Mass. He was born May 23, 1786, and died November 6, 1878, at the age of 92. Thirteen children were the result of the marriage, of whom five are still living - Mrs. Cordelia W Davison, of Central Falls; Thomas Larned, of Dudley, Mass.; Wm. Larned of Denver, Col.; John Larned, of Boston, Mass., and Elizabeth Davis, of Dudley, Mass. They were all in Dudley, and the old home is still in good repair, and the condition upon which the dwelling is rented was that her room should be kept in perfect order for her as long as she should live. Her decendants number five children, twenty-seven grandchildren... Read MORE...

1895 - Dudley
Dudley, a post-village of Worcester co., Mass., in Dudley township, about 18 miles S. by W. from Worcester. It has a church and an academy. The township is drained by the Quinebaug River. It has manufactures of linen, fancy cassimeres, shoe-knives, and paper, and is traversed by the Southbridge Branch of the New York & New England Railroad (West Dudley Station). Pop. of township, 2944.
Lippincott's Gazetteer of the World: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World Containing Notices of Over One Hundred and Twenty-five Thousand Places ... Joseph Thomas January 1, 1895 J.B. Lippincott


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1916
Dudley, a post-village of Worcester co., Mass., in Dudley township (town), about 18 miles S. by W. of Worcester. The town is drained by tbe Quinebaug River. It has woollen-mills, etc Pop. of the town in 1900, 3553 ; of the village, about 2800.
Lippincotts New Gazetteer: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World, Containing the Most Recent and Authentic Information Respecting the Countries, Cities, Towns, Resorts, Islands, Rivers, Mountains, Seas, Lakes, Etc., in Every Portion of the Globe, Part 1 Angelo Heilprin Louis Heilprin - January 1, 1916 J.B. Lippincott - Publisher
1927 - Stopped at Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Mass. Sept 3, (A.P.) - The air express plane operated by the Colonial Air Transport, Inc., which left Boston at 7:15 last night, was forced down here at about 9:30 by rain and fog. The plane landed without accident in a hayfield on the farm of Warren Bates and took off again at 1:05 this morning for Brainard field, Hartford, Conn.

W. E. Kline, the pilot, had previously hopped from the field at 10:15 p.m., but the weather forced him to return. On his second hop he circled about Dudley and Webster. The plane was not reported in this vicinity afterwards.
The Barre Daily Times
Barre, Vermont
September 3, 1927


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1931 - Budleigh Hall, originally the summer home of the Conant family, used by Dudley Bible School and later Nichols Academy was destroyed by fire.

A Commemorative Profile of Dudley Massachusetts by Dudley Bicentennial Committee, 1976

Read more about Hezekiah CONANT photo of ancestor
1932 - Change of Route Saved $13,000 Payroll - Armed Gang Cooled Their Heels At the Wrong Entrance of Mill At Dudley. Mass.
Dudley, Mass., Feb. 12 (A.P) - An attempt by armed men to steal a $13,000 payroll of the Stevens linen mills was frustrated today because the paymaster and his assistant took a route from a bank to the mills different than that usually taken.

Webster, Dudley and state police started an immediate search for the men, who had been marked in an automobile within 100 feet of the mill offices up to the time the mill officials learned of their presence.

H. Wadsworth Crawford, mill agent, told the police one of his workmen passed near the automobile and was confronted by one of the car's occupants who pointed a shotgun at him and told him to hurry away. The employe reported the matter to Crawford and he notified police.

In the meantime the paymaster had reached the plant through a door other than the one ordinarily used after varying the customary route from the bank to the mills.

The occupants of the automobile fled when the noticed the unusual activities within the... Read MORE...

1941 - Paper Mill Destroyed. Loss of $250,000 By Spectacular Fire at West Dudley, Mass.
Dudley, Mass., Jan. 6 (AP) - Brought under control after a day and night battle in zero weather, flames sputtered today in the ruins of the West Dudley paper mill and left damage estimated by fire officials at $250,000.

Crumbling floors that plunged wood pulp, huge rolls of paper and heavy machinery from the top of the rambling two-story mill kept the firemen at a distance as the roaring flames shot high into the air.

At times more than 100 persons - regular firemen from Dudley and Webster and volunteers that came from many surrounding towns - joined in fighting the blaze, which was discovered early yesterday morning.

The mill, one of the oldest industries in the section, employed 90 persons.
The Barre Daily Times
Barre, Vermont
January 6, 1941
2023 - Here's a list of things to do and places to visit in Dudley and its surrounding areas:
Nichols College: Start your visit with a stroll through the picturesque campus of Nichols College. The college's historic architecture and well-maintained grounds make it a pleasant place for a walk.

Dudley Farm Museum: Explore the history of Dudley and its agricultural heritage at the Dudley Farm Museum. The museum showcases antique farming equipment, tools, and artifacts from the town's past. It's a fascinating glimpse into rural life in Massachusetts.

Black Tavern Historical Society: This local historical society operates the Black Tavern Museum. The Black Tavern was a famous stagecoach stop during the 18th and 19th centuries. Visitors can tour the museum and learn about the building's history, which includes stories of travelers, colonial-era taverns, and more.

Hiking and Nature Walks: Dudley is surrounded by natural beauty, and there are several hiking trails and nature preserves in the area. Consider visiting Westville Lake Recreation Area or the Buffumville Lake... Read MORE...

Discover MY Roots: Dudley Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

We currently have information about 210 ancestors who were born or died in Dudley.

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Ancestors Who Were Married in Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

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Ancestors buried in Dudley - Cemeteries in Dudley, Massachusetts, USA

Corbin Cemetery

Calvary Cemetery

Genealogy Resources for Dudley

Massachusetts Newspapers

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Updated: 2/7/2024 5:36:13 PM