Abington Historical Commission
Abington Timeline

The items listed below are only a partial listing of events throughout Abington's existence. Unfortunately it is impossible to add every detail of Abington to a timeline, instead the timeline includes "firsts" and "most notables". Should there be something you deem significant enough to list here, please feel free to contact us.


ca. 500 AD

"Satucket Path" become a well-worn trail used by native americans


Governor Bradford delineates the boundaries between Plymouth Colony and Masschusetts Bay Colony are designated and labled as the "Patent Line" or "Old Colony Line". The line is the border of present day Abington and Weymouth and the separation point of Plymouth County and Norfolk County


Myles Standish, Constant Southworth, and Samuel Nash, purchased a small portion of the 196 square-mile “Bridgewater Purchase”.

ca. 1664-68

Most of the Abington's 16-20 land grants given out by the General Coury of Plymouth County

ca. 1668-1672

Andrew Ford of Weymouth becomes the first settler of the are


King Phillip's War, in which it is said Andrew Ford's first house is destroye


The first sawmill of the area appears on the Schumatuscacant River in what is present day East Whitman. The community that developed around this mill was known as "Little Comfort"


Settlers of the area first apply to be designated as a tow


First meetinghouse constructed


First minister hired, Rev. Samuel Browne of Newbury. The hiring was a critical step toward's township as the Court's required a support of a minister before granting an area independance. Rev. Browne preached his first sermon December 8, 1711


On June 10th Abington is officially incorporated as a town through a decree by the Roayl Governor Jospeh Dudley.


Abington looses a portion of its eastern territory to the newly incoprated Hanover.


First schoolhouse contructed in Abington and was located in Abington Center. The one-room schoolhouse served the entire town of Abington until 1843


Southeastern corber of territory lost to Hanson

Abingtonians particpate in the French & Indian Wars


Joseph Greenleaf publishes he “Noble Resolves” or “Abington Resolves” in the Boston Gazette denouncing the Townsend Acts


Abingtonians particpate in the American Revolution. One report indicates that "almost every man in town capable of bearing arms was in the service, for a longer or shorter time"

ca 1777 Small Pox or "Camp Fever" brought back by soliders ravages the town until checked by innoculation


Thomas Hunt, who is credited with bringing shoe manufacturing to Abington, moved to the town from Quincy


The U.S.S. Constitution is constructed utlizing wood from as far north as Maine and as farth south as Georgia. Abington's lumber industry is called upon for wale planks of white oak seven inches thick and are furnished by Obadiah Hersey of South Abington


The church and the town officially separte as a second congregation is formed in South Abington forcing town meetings to be conducted outside of church meetings

The New Bedford Turnpike (appoximately todays Route 18) is opened for service through Abington


A Third Congregational society and subsequnet church forms in Abington, this time in East Abington


David Gloyd establishes the first shoe factory in Abington


Aaron Hobart, grandson of Colonel Aaron Hobart, publishes "An Historical Sketch of Abington" which is a source of much of Abington's recorded history


The Old Colony Railroad opened for service from Boston to Plymouth

First Alms House established

First Annual Town report printed


First all-day outdoor Abolitionist meeting is held on August first in Abington's Island Grove Park


Abington first begins providing street names


Abington Savings Bank opens (and remains a major supporter and industy provider until its merger with Sovereign Bank in 2004)


Abington's first newspaper, The Abington Standard, is published


Abington Mutual Fire Insurance Company is incorporated


First jury list (or veniermen list) is published


South Abington, Company E, 4th Regiment Masschusetts Volunteers are the first to respond to Boston Common at nation's call to arms. Througout the Civil War Abington residents participate in military units fighting for the Union

Veterans and their familiers begin to receive state aid

In a statewide survey, Abington is found to be have the highest valuation greatly exceeding that of any town in the county


Benjamin Hobart, a prominemnt tack manufacture, publishes his "History of Abington" which had previously appeared as a series in the Abington Standard


Abington builds its first "lock-up" or jail


Abington Fire Department established

Hanover Branch railroad opened for service between North Abington, East Abington, West Hanover and Hanover's Four Corners (operating until 1948)


Health Department established


Abington's Town By-laws are dran up and ratified

The Dunbar Street School located at 66 Dunbar Street is built in what now is infamously referred to as the "Mansard Abomination. The construction caused such a rift in the town that it was the final catalyst leading to the town being split. By popular local support portions of the town would seceed from Abington and incorporate themselves as independant municipalities (Rockland and Whitman). The school remained in service until 1938, later becoming a a frozen-food locker and eventually going into disuse. In the late 1960's and early 1970's it is torn down and an apartment complex is erected on the site destroying one of the most pivotal icon's of Abington's history


The East Ward of Abington is cut off and incorporated as the Town of Rockland


The South Ward of Abington is cut off and incoporated as the Town of South Abington (which through popular referendum will change its name in 1886 to Whitman)

The Arnold Shoe Factory building is begun by Moses N. Arnold. The building still exists today at 200 Wales St. and is occupied by a few private companies.


Abington Public Library established


Abington Park Department established


Telephone service is first available


Abington Water Department established


The town purchases a portion a lot inside Mount Vernon cemetary for graves for the "Forefathers Stones"


The Crossett Shoe Factory is built by Lewis A. Crossett. A large portion of the building still exists and is today the home of New England Art Publishers


Abstracts of Abington Town Meetings are first published in Annual Reports


Abington's first official High School (remaning until 1902) opens on Washington Street in a building constructed in 1853 that today is the American Legion Building


Electric lighting is first available in Abington


The Abington-Rockland Railway Company streetcar service is established in Abington, operating until 1935

"The North Abington Riot" takes place as a confrontation between the "New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad Corporation" (usually shortened to “the New Haven”) and the town over a dispute of the right-of-way of streetcars crossing the railroad tracks in North Abington. The incident took place outside the North Abington Depot (present day location of the Abington Depot restaurant). A stone was erected August 15, 1993 as a memorial.


Abington Police Department established


Abington opens its new High School which serves the town from 1903-1934. The building was almost completely destroyed by fire in 1934 and was torn down in the spring of 1936. The land today is occupied by the Frolio School, and although similar in look the buildings are not one in the same.


Abington celebrates her bicentenial by dedicating the Memorial Arch and Bridge at Island Grove Park. The day included participation of all three "Old Abington" towns in a week-long celebration where factories, schools, and other normal functions paused for the festivities


Abington participates in The Great War, World War I sending several of her son's into the military including five brothers of the Bailey family.


The Dyer Memorial Library opens to the public


The Historical Society of Old Abington (comprising of Abington, Rockland, and Whitman) is established.


Abington once again responds to the nations need with many of it's citizen participating and countless of its families impacted


Abington Zoning Board of Appeals established


The New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad Corporation, cause of the Abington Riot, is sold to Penn Central


Abington Historical Commission established by popular vote by the town


Chapter 11 in the By-Laws of the Town of Abington are accepted setting down the description, objectives, mandates, and procedures to be used by the Historical Commission.


(781) 982 - 0059

500 Gliniewicz Way

Abington Historical Commission

Abington, Massachusetts 02351



Copyright 2007 Abington Historical Commission, Abington Massachusetts