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in falls across the south-west end of Brooklyn hills, and passing near Framingham pond, runs north-east to Cambridge; hence winding round in a finuous course falls into Boston harbour. Taunton river rises in the Blue Mountains, which lie back of Milton and Braintree, and forins the principal drain of the country lying east of these mountains—the river runs nearly a straight course fouth-welt, under the foot of the mountains, to Tiverton on Narragansett Bay. Concord river is formed by three branches, one illuing from Framinghamn pond, and the other two from the mountains about Marlborough. These streams united run north, and fall into the Merrimack riier a little below Pantucket falls.
Myitic and Medfori rivers run from north to south into Boston harbour. Ipswich river, rising in Wilmington in Middlesex county, runs east and then north-east into the Atlantic, at Ipswich. Weitfield river, from the north-west, empries into Connecticut river at Springfield. A little above, the Chicabee from the north-east empties into the lame river. Deerfield river rises in Vermont, and running fouthwardly through Wilmington, Charlemont, and between Shelburne and Conway, enters and pailes through a large tract of the finest meadow in the world. In these meadows it receives Green river, from the mountains, which is about four rods wide; hence they pass on together, in a broad smooth stream, about three miles into Connecticut river.
Capes.] The only Capes of note on the coast of Massachusetts, are Cape Ann on the north side of Boston Bay, and Cape Cod on the south. The latter is the terminating hook of a promontory, which extends far into the sea, and is remarkable for having been the first land which was made by the first settlers of Plymouth on the American coait in 1620. In the barb of the hook, which is made by the Cape, is Cape Cod harbour. This promontory circumscribes Barnilable Bay, and forms Barnstable county. This
is almost an island. The isthmus which connects it to the continent, is between Sandwich Bay on the north, and Buzzards Bay on the south. The distance between them is but fix or seven miles. Herring brook almost crosses this neck or isthmus, so that a canal of about one mile only would insulate the county, and save several hundred miles dangerous navigation in pafling from Newport to Boiton, and be otherwise of immense advantage to trade. Such a canal has been talked of for more than an hundred years past. The eastern coast of this promontory is subject to continual changes. Large tracts of sand bank, in the course of forty or fifty years, by the conttant accumulation of sand and mud, occasioned by the coil and recoil of the tides, have been transformed into solid marth land. The fand banks extend two hundred miles into the fea, forming dangerous foals.
Ijlards.) Among other islands which border upon this coast, are Kappavak, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket. Kappawak, now Dukes county, and the neighbouring ines, were discovered as early as 1602, by Bartholomew Gornoid. In honour of Queen Elizabeth, he called a cluíter of small islands near the cape, Elizabeth isles. To another neighbouring island he gave the name of Martha's Vineyard. Dukes county is twenty miles in length, and about four in breadih. It contains féren
parishes. Edgarton, which includes the island Chabaquidick, is the thire town. This little island is about half a mile from the barbour, and renders it very secure. This county is full of inhabitants, who, like their neighbours at Nantucket, fubfiit principally by fishing. They send three representatives to the general aflembly, and one fenator.
Nantucket lics fouth of Cape Cod, and is considerably less than Dakes county. It contains, according to Douglafs, 23,000 acres, including the beach. No mention is made of the discovery and fettlement of this iland, under its present name, by any of our historians. It is more than probable that this is the iNand which is usually called Nautican by ancient voyagers. It formerly had the most considerable whale fithery on the coast; but the war almost ruined them. They are now beginning to revive their forner business. Most of the inhabitants are whalers and fishermen. As the island is low, sandy and barren, it is calculated only for those people who are willing to depend almost entirely on the watery element for subsistence. The island of itself constitutes one county, by the name of Nantucket. It has but one town, called Sherburne, and sends one representative to the general afsembly.
Light-Horfes.] Within the State of Massachusetts are the following Lighi-Houses : on Plumb island, near Newbury, are two, which mult be brought to bear in a line with each other, in order to pass the bar in fafety. On Thatchers island, off Cape Ann, two lights of equal height. Another stands on a rock on the north side of the entrance of Boiton harbour, with one single light. On the north point of Plymouth harbour are two lights, one over the other. On a point at the entrance of the harbour on the island of Nantucket, is one with a single light. This light may be seen as far as Nantucket shoals extend. The island being low, the light appears over it.
Religion.] The religion of this commonwealth is established, by their excellent constitution, on a most liberal and tolerant plan. All persons, of whatever religious profession or sentiments, may worship God agreeably to the dictates of their own consciences, unmolested, provided they do not disturb the public peace. The legislature are empowered to require of the several towns, parishes, &c. to provide, at their own expence, for the public worship of God, and to require the attendance of the subject on the same. The people have liberty to choose their own teachers, and to contract with them for their support.
The body of the churches in this state are established upon the congregational plan. Their rules of church discipline and government are, in general, founded upon the Cambridge platform, as drawn up by the synod of 1648. The churches claim no jurisdiction over each other, and the power of ecclefiaftical councils is only advisory.
The following statement, shews what are the several religious denomi. nations in this itate, and their proportional numbers.
Number of Supposed number of
Congregations. each denomination. Congregationalists,
11,104 Friends or Quakers,
357,410 In this statement it is supposed that all the inhabitants in the state consider themselves as belonging to one or the other of the religious denominations mentioned ; and that each religious fociety, of every denomination, is composed of an equal number of fouls; that is, each is supposed to contain 694, which, if we reckon the number of inhabitants in the ftate at 357,511, will be the proportion for each congregation. Although this may not be an exact apportionment of the difierent fećts, yet it is perhaps as accurate as the nature of the subject will allow, and sufficient to give a general idea of the proportion which the several denominations bear to each other.
The number of congregational churches in 1749 was 250.
In 1760, the number of inhabitants in this itate, was about 268,850. The proportion of the fecis then was nearly as follows, viz. Sects. Congregations. Supposed number of
fouls of each feci. Congregationalists,
225,426 Friends meetings,
14,723 Elpiscopalians, Presbyterians,
268,850 The congregational minifters in this state, have an annual meeting at Boston, the Thursday following the lait Wednesday in May, on which occasion a fermon is preached, and a collection made for the relief and support of such of their society as are in needy circumstances. This collection is chiefly applied to the support of the widows of deceased minifters.
Civil Divisions.] The commonwealth of Massachusetts is divided into fourteen counties, and sub-divided into 355 town|hips. The following table exhibits a comparative view of the population-agricultural improvements--military strength, &c. of the several counties, together with their fea-ports and principal trading towns,
Total 357,5111,087,3733,185,857 49,6771 286,990 70,648 I his valuation was taken in 1784, and supposed to be less than the reality. + This estimate is tcry imperfect--No account having been taken for near
Population, Character, &c.] The above table exhibits an accurate ac. count of the population of this state. The most populous parts of the Itate are included between the fea-coast, and a line drawn parallel to it at the distance of ten or twelve miles; and between two lines drawn parallel to Connecticut river on each side, at the distance of five or fix miles.
Character, &c. fee New-England.