History of Westminster, MA

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The town of Westminster is a rapidly growing suburban hill-town which was previously used by the Indians for the main purpose of hunting and fishing. In 1759, Westminster was incorporated as a town by out ancestors, although it was not until 1770 that it was actually accepted as a town. This was because it spent most of it's time as a campground to our soldiers fighting in the French and Indian Was in the 1740's. In those earlier days, every homeowner was a farmer, who either set up sawmills, grain mills, and shops to provide other necessities for the town.

The community also took a moderate position during Shays Rebellion, recommending the release of insurgents who has been captured but registering its opposition to the court system.

It wasn't until 1835 when Westminster finally began communicating and trading with other cities. In 1835, the "new" road to Fitchburg was built.

This allowed farmers in Westminster able to trade with the big factories in Fitchburg. The next big thing was in 1848 when the Vermont and Massachusetts Railroad was finally set up, going through Westminster. This allowed many of the farmers to expand and move to other places. In 1900, the East-West electric streetcar service was established from Fitchburg to Gardner through Westminster center (Westminster, MA).

Electric power was starting to light up homes and streets at this time. Experiments in this country and others were trying to develop a way to power transportation with electricity. The first of these systems basically involved adding power to the common horse car. These cars allowed easy transportation for all residents in Westminster. They were like trolleys that we now have today (Appleton Electric Streetcar System). These new inventions led Westminster to become more urban.

Later on, Westminster became a bustling industrial...