Friday, October 9, 2009

18th Century Receipt of Funds Used to Construct the Little Red School House

The Governor's Academy Archives houses several 18th century documents that detail the logistics behind the establishment of a grammar school, as laid out in the Last Will and Testament of William Dummer. The following image shows a handwritten receipt from 1762, signed by Moses Parsons, minister of Byfield Parish at the time and head of a special committee charged with establishing "Dumr Charity School" and securing a qualified headmaster, and by Joseph Gerrish, also committee member. The receipt shows the rent charged for the year prior to the school's formation--5 pounds 6 shillings plus "light pence"--that was used to construct the Little Red School House. Below the image is a transcription for ease of reading.

Byfield Dec. 31, 1762

Rec’d. Of Capt. Joseph Hale & Mr. Daniel Palmer the sum of Five Pounds Six Shillings & Light Pence for the hire or the great House & Farm, lately belonging to the Hon’ble William Dummer Esq-deceas’d not included in the Leases given of said Farm, the said sum being due for the Rent of said House & Land since the Tenth Day of October 1761 to the Tenth Day of October last past, which sum is rec’d by us in order to pay or Satisfy for, a Grammar School House, erected & built on said Farm, agreeable to the Direction of the last Will & Testament of the (s’d) deceased.

Moses Parsons
Joseph Gerrish