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"Paupers in Massachusetts" article from the Gazette and Courier newspaper
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Paupers were a drain on town and state budgets, and were enumerated every year. Each town in Massachusetts had their own Overseers of the Poor officers who supervised and administered care of paupers. This report for 1849 lists the numbers of paupers in several categories. The total number for the year is 24,892 out of a total population of about 994,000, or about 2.5%. Costs of the almshouses are also reported, as is the value of the labor of the paupers who reside there. The numbers of paupers in each Franklin County town that filed a return are listed. The Gazette & Courier was the newspaper in Greenfield, Massachusetts, from July 20, 1841 until June 24, 1932. Before 1841 the newspaper's name changed quite frequently, with Gazette a frequent part of the title.
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