Discover Hollis’ first Town Meeting

Submitted by the Hollis Heritage Commission

HOLLIS – The Hollis Heritage Commission will sponsor a Hidden Treasures event from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, May 14, at the Lawrence Barn, 28 Depot Road.

There will be displays, talks, horses and interactive activities centered on Hollis colonials, their march to Lexington and Concord, and their part in the battle of Bunker Hill and the Revolutionary War.

This family-friendly event is in collaboration with the Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area in partnership with the National Park Service.

In preparation for the celebration, the HHC will introduce a series of Hollis historical treasures that date to its early settlers and founding charter of 1746. Come visit the heritage celebration and see how many treasures you can identify – including this second in the series:

The first Town Meeting was held at the inn of Lt. Benjamin Farley in January 1739. Like town meetings today, the business included the election of officers, building plans and taxes.

At the first meeting, Abraham Taylor was elected moderator and clerk; A. Taylor, P. Powers and B. Farley were assessors; S. Harris was the treasurer; and T Dinsmore was the collector of nonresident tax money.

Other business recorded at the meeting included a vote to build a place of public worship 22 feet by 20 feet with one floor, one door and three 9-foot windows.

Taxes were first assessed in November 1740 on 29 residents.

In addition to property taxes, all males 18 or older were assessed a "poll-tax."

The highest property tax in 1740 was 6s. 7d. When 6 shillings (s.) and 7 pennies (d.) is converted, the total assessed property tax is $39.48 in 2005 U.S. dollars.