Digital Commonwealth

Dartmouth Monthly Meeting of Friends Records, 1698-2005

University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries Special Collections and University Archives

Located in South Dartmouth, Mass., the Dartmouth Monthly Meeting is one of the oldest Friends meetings in the United States, having been founded by Quakers seeking a haven from religious persecution in nearby Massachusetts Bay and Plymouth Colonies. Private worship may have begun in area homes as early as the 1660s, with the Dartmouth Monthly Meeting formally established in 1699. Today, the Meeting has two distinct meetings: the pastoral Smith Neck Meetinghouse and the Apponegansett Meetinghouse. The records of Dartmouth Monthly Meeting are divided into two centers of gravity. First, the collection contains nineteenth century copies of the meeting’s early minutes (1698-1792) and vital records covering most of that period. Secondly, the collection contains to the meeting since the late 1960s, including minutes (1968-1989) and newsletter (1999-2005). The remaining records of the meeting — the bulk of them — were maintained by the Old Dartmouth Historical Society into at least the 1990s, although their present location is unknown.

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