[ Images of the charter from the
original town books. Click images above for larger views]
George, By the Grace
of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland, King, Defender of
"To all People to whom these presents shall come: Greeting:
Know ye, we of our especial knowledge and meer motion, from the
due encouragement of settling a new plantation, by and with the
advice and consent of our council, have given and Granted, and
by these Presents, far as in lies, do give and grant unto all
such of our loving subjects as were inhabitants and free holders
in the year one thousand seven hundred and twenty-three, in our
town of New Castle and in the Parish of Greenland, both within
our Province of New Hampshire, in New England, to be divided among
them in proportion to their Respective Rates, which they paid
in the year 1723 aforesaid, one tract of Land to be laid out at
the head of Nottingham and Northward of land formerly granted
to the children of SamI. Allen, desc'd the same to be six miles
in Breadth and four miles in Dept, or in such other form as the
land un-granted in that place will admit, so as it contains the
same Quantity of Land, and the same to be a town corporate by
the name Epsom to the Persons aforesaid forever. To have and to
Hold the said Tract of Land to said Grantees and their heirs and
assigns forever upon the following conditions:"
1st. That they build twenty Dwelling Houses and settle a Family
in each within the term of four years, and break up three acres
of Ground for each Settlement, and plant or sow the same within
2nd. That a house be built for the Public worship of God within
the term of six years.
3rd. That One Hundred acres of Land be Reserved for the parsonage,
one hundred acres for the first minister of the Gospel, and One
hundred acres for the Benefit of a School. Provided, Nevertheless,
that the Peace with the Indians continue during the aforesaid
term of your years.
But if it should happen that a war with the Indians should commence
before the aforesaid term of four years be expired, there shall
be allowed to the aforesaid Proprietors the term of four years
after the expiration of the War to perform the aforesaid conditions.
Rendering and paying therefore to us, our heirs and successors,
or such other officer or officers as shall be appointed to Receive
the same, the annual quit rent of acknowledgment of one pound
of good merchantable Hemp in said town, on the first day December
yearly, forever, if demanded.
Reserving also unto us, our heirs and successors, all mast trees
growing on said Land, according to an act of Parliament made and
provided in that case.
And for the better order, Rule and Government of the said Town,
we, by these Presents, Grant for us, our heirs and successors,
unto the aforesaid Proprietors, and those that shall inhabit the
said Town, that yearly and every year, upon the first Wednesday
in May, they may meet at any place within the Province of New
Hampshire aforesaid until the settlement of the aforesaid town
is perfected and afterward in the said town, to elect and choose
by the Major part of them constables, Selectmen and all other
town Officers, according to the Laws and usage of our aforesaid
Province have and enjoy, and we appoint our Loving Subjects, Theodore
Atkinson, Joshua Foss and Capt. Samuel Weeks to be the Selectmen
to manage the affairs of the said town for the Present year and
until others are chosen in their room by the aforesaid proprietors.
In Testimony where of we have caused the seal of our said Province
to be herewith annexed.
Witness, John Wentworth, Esq., our Lt. Governor and Commander
in Chief in and over our said Province, at our town of Portsmouth,
the eighteenth day of May, in the Thirteenth year of our Reign,
anno Domini 1727.
/s/ ~. Wentworth