The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Haverhill

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The American Cyclopædia
Haverhill
Edition of 1879. See also Haverhill, Massachusetts on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

HAVERHILL, a city of Essex co., Massachusetts, on the N. bank of the Merrimack river, at the head of navigation, 18 m. from the sea, and 27 m. N. of Boston; pop. in 1850, 5,877; in 1860, 9,995; in 1870, 13,092, of whom 2,003 were foreigners. It is connected by two handsome bridges with Bradford on the opposite bank of the river. The Boston and Maine railroad crosses the Merrimack at this point, and connects at Bradford with the Newburyport railroad. A street railroad company has recently been organized. The city is divided into six wards, and is about 12 m. in length on the river and 3 m. in breadth, bordering on New Hampshire. Within its limits are several hills, commanding extensive and beautiful views, and four lakes, from two of which it draws its supply of water. At the E. extremity is Rocks village, connected with West Newbury on the opposite bank of the Merrimack by a wooden bridge, and at the W. extremity Ayers village, containing several manufactories. The thickly settled portion is pleasantly built on a gentle acclivity, presenting with its neat shaded dwellings and background of hills a remarkably attractive appearance. There are a soldiers' monument of white marble, a fine city hall, an odd fellows' and a masonic building, two other public halls, five hotels, and six wharves. Haverhill is noted for the manufacture of boots and shoes, which is the principal industry, and in which it is surpassed only by Lynn. In 1832 the number of firms engaged in the business was 28; in 1837, 42; in 1860, 100; in 1874, 150. The shipments have been as follows; in 1850, 46,272 cases; 1855, 66,984; 1860, 83,856; 1872, 200,000, worth about $8,000,000. The number of hands employed is from 6,000 to 8,000, many of whom are Canadian French. The goods manufactured here are principally for women's, misses', and children's wear, and are sold chiefly in the west and south. There are also 26 manufactories of heels, &c., 3 of lasts, 1 of shoe nails and tacks, 8 or 10 of other articles used in the manufacture of boots and shoes, 3 of carriages, 4 of bricks, 3 of wool hats, 5 of paper boxes, 1 of woollens, a bonnet bleachery, 4 machine shops, 4 national banks with an aggregate capital of $840,000, and 2 savings banks with deposits in 1874 amounting to $3,128,000. Four or five small streams furnish water power. The valuation of property in 1873 was $10,861,470; taxation, $217,229 40; debt, Jan. 1, 1874, $352,875 64. The number of public schools in 1873 was 47, viz.: 1 high, 25 grammar, and 21 primary, having 52 teachers and 2,111 pupils. There are a daily, a tri-weekly, a semi-weekly, and two weekly newspapers, a public library, a children's aid society and home, a young men's Christian association, and 20 churches. — Haverhill was settled in 1640, and incorporated in 1645. A city charter was granted in 1870. For a long period it was a frontier town, and suffered severely during the Indian wars. In 1697 Mrs. Hannah Dustin was taken captive during an Indian attack, but shortly after escaped by killing 10 of her captors, with the aid of a boy and her nurse. The city is the birthplace of the poet Whittier.