Petition of Charles Brigham, Joseph Merriman, and Abner Howe, Selectmen of the Town of Grafton, to the Massachusetts General Court

Province of the Massachusetts Bay

To His Excellency William Shirley, Esq., Captain General and Governor in Chief in and over Said Province the Honorable His Majesty's Council and House of Representatives on General Court Assembled at Boston, February 5th 1755                                                                                                       

Humbly shews Charles Brigham, Joseph Merriam, and Abner Stowe, Selectmen of the Town of Grafton in the County of Worcester, that in the summer of the year 1751, one Sarah Burnee, an Indian squaw of said Grafton, died after a long sickness, that during her sickness, she was under the care of Mr. Hezekiah Ward, there placed by your petitioners as selectmen aforesaid, that the cost thereof which your petitioners were obliged to pay amounts to thirteen pounds six shillings and eight pence nor could they get clear what they became obliged to pay said sum being sued for the same, that they have applied to the trustees of the Indians at Grafton to reimburse the sum by them paid who decline so doing without the direction of Your Excellency and Honors, although they have money in their hands almost sufficient for that purpose remaining on the sale of some of said squaw's land but was to be applied to other uses, but upon her death still lyes in their hands unapplied.

Wherefore, your petitioners humbly pray that the money remaining in the hands of said trustees being the sum of twelve pounds ten shillings together with part of the annual Income of the money coming to her heirs for interest as may be sufficient1 to reimburse your petitioners said sum with reasonable damage to be adjusted by said trustees or that relief may be granted in such other way as may be consistent with Your Excellency and Honors' experienced justice and wisdom.

And as in duty bound shall pray,

Charles Brigham
Joseph Mariam
Abner Stowe


The subscriber, one of the trustees of the Grafton Indians certify that the facts set forth in the above petition are true and that there is remaining in the hands of the trustees the sum above mentioned and humbly apprehend that it is very reasonable the selectmen should be indemnified or the trustees would have done it if they had power so to do.  John Chandler

Legislative Action:

In Council February 21, 1753.  Read and ordered that the prayer of the petition be granted and that the trustees of the Grafton Indians be directed to pay for the purposes within mentioned the sum of twelve pounds ten shillings remaining in their hands towards reimbursing the petitioners, and that they pay the remainder so as of [ illegible ] to [ illegible ] indemnify them out of the interest money belonging to the heir of the said Sarah Burnee, deceased as it [ illegible ]. Sent down for concurrence.  Thomas Clarke, Deputy Secretary.  In the House of Representatives, February 21, 1755.  Read and concurred.  Thomas Hubbard, Speaker.  Consented to, William Shirley


 592, 593

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