|Tour the Villages
|Click on any picture to see a larger version or click on the Tour button for a guided tour.|
|Packet Ship||Bass River Bridge||Bass River Scene||Matthews House|
|Salt Works||Farris Store||Quaker Meeting House||Seleck Matthews House|
originally to the Pawkunnakwut Indians, much of the land that South Yarmouth
now occupies was set aside by the town in 1713 as a reservation for the
Native Americans. Indians lived along the shores of Bass River and Long
Pond, and had a meeting house close to Swan Pond in what is now West Yarmouth.
In the early years of European occupation, disease decimated much of the
tribe and an epidemic in 1763 virtually wiped out the remaining natives.
The town ordered that the former "Indian lands" be sold and
the one remaining Indian, Thomas Greenough, leased his lands to David
Kelley. Kelley, a prominent Quaker, helped to build a new village, buying
up much of the land, beginning a rope works, and donating a parcel for
the construction of a new Quaker meeting house. "Indian Land"
soon became known as "Friends Village" as the population of
Quakers in the community grew. The Quakers welcomed those of all religions,
and soon Baptist and Methodist meeting houses could be found in the village
as well. Still, it is the Quaker's who in large part shaped the business,
social and religious history of the village.
A tour through Friend's Village in the nineteenth century reveals packets and coasting vessels lining the shores of Bass River as small ships are built along its shores; row upon row of salt works with wind-driven mills pumping the salt water into wooden vats; a magnesia factory, built to take advantage of the by-products of the salt industry; numerous prospering businesses including groceries, mercantiles, jewelry and clock makers, cobblers, blacksmiths, and a cooper's shop; two windmills, working to grind the grain from local farmers into flour and meal; and several churches, including the plain white Quaker Meeting House and its surrounding burial grounds.
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PO Box 11, Yarmouth Port, MA 02675