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Genealogy in Franklin County, Massachusetts
Town of Erving

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Erving lies in the eastern part of Franklin County and is roughly bounded by Gill on the northwest, Northfield on the north, Warwick and Orange on the east, Wendell on the south, and Montague on the south and west. Erving was organized April 17, 1838 from common lands called Erving's Grant. On Feburary 27, 1841, the boundary between Orange and Erving was established. On February 10, 1860, a part of Northfield called Hack's Grant, entirely detached from Northfield and surrounded by Erving on all sides, was annexed to Erving.

In 1874, Elias Nason described the town of Erving as follows:
is a farming-town, of a long and irregular shape, lying at the confluence of Miller's and Connecticut Rivers, in the easterly part of Franklin County, 92 miles north-west of Boston; and bounded on the north by Northfield, east by Warwick and Orange, south by Wendell and Montague (from which it is separated by Miller's River), and west by the last-named town and Gill. It was formerly called "Erving's Grant," and was incorporated as a town April 17, 1838. A part of Northfield, known as "Hack's Grant," was annexed to it Feb. 10, 1860. The number of inhabitants is 579; of dwelling-houses, 145; of farms, 42; and of acres in woodland, 2,983. The valuation of the town is $300,420; the rate of taxation, $1.93 per $100. It is finely watered by the beautiful river named above, together with Keyup Brook, a mill-stream which flows from a pond of 16 acres on the Northfield line, through fertile valleys, southerly into Miller's River; and Scott's Brook, an affluent of the same river, in the westerly part of the town. Miller's River is here a rapid stream, running circuitously through a narrow valley, flanked by rocky and wooded eminences on either side. Much of its motive-power is wasted. The otter still frequents its waters; and, in the wild eminences above, the wild-cat and the porcupine are still found. In a secluded ledge which rises almost perpendicularly, far up on the right bank of the river, there now lives a hermit, bearing the name of "John Smith," who calls his rocky habitation "The Erving Castle." He is a man of some intelligence, wears a long beard and Scotch cap, and receives his visitors with a kindly spirit. He spends his time in knitting stockings, picking berries, cutting wood, reading and writing and entertaining company. His age may be fifty years, three of which he has spent in "Erving Castle."

The land is excellent for the growth of timber and for grazing. Large numbers of railroad-ties and telegraph-poles are cut here, 1,495,000 having in one year been prepared for market. The town has seven saw-mills, two chair manufactories, one pail, one children's carriage, and one bit-brace manufactory. It has one post-office, a hotel called "The Erving House," a town-hall, a Post of the G. A. R., four school-districts, and one Congregational church, organized Sept. 19, 1832, of which the Rev. A. Stowell is pastor. Erving sent 58 soldiers to the late war, of whom 30 were lost. This town is reached by the Vermont and Massachusetts and the Vermont Central Railroads; and with its water-power, productive soil, beautiful scenery, healthful climate, and railroad facilities, seems well situated for future increase and prosperity.
(Source: Nason, Elias, 1811-1887. A gazetteer of the state of Massachusetts : with numerous illustrations on wood and steel / by Elias Nason. -- Boston : B.B. Russell, 1874. -- p. 198-199)

Online Genealogical Resources

The following resources may provide information useful in researching Erving families.



The following bibliography lists sources that may be useful in researching the genealogy and history of families that have lived in the Erving area. The bibliography is arranged by subject category and alphabetically by author and title within each category. Information on library holdings is recorded in the box following each citation. For published items, only holdings of libraries profiled on the Archives and Libraries page are given when known. For unpublished and other rare sources, any library known to hold the item is listed. Many of the items listed here are also available at other libraries and research centers in New England, New York, and elsewhere.

Original records and other items microfilmed by the LDS Family History Library (also known as the Genealogical Society of Utah) are also listed below. These microfiches and microfilms are available via interlibrary loan through the LDS family history centers. Make a note of the microfiche or microfilm reel number(s) needed in order to place a request at one of the LDS family history centers.

Church Records

  • First Evangelical Congregational Church (Erving, Mass.)
    Church records, 1832-1952. -- Salt Lake City : Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1972.
    1 microfilm reel ; 35 mm.
    Microfilm of original records in Erving, Massachusetts.
    Also known as the Evangelical Congregational Church.
    Contains minutes of church meetings, proceedings, finances, baptisms, deaths, christened children, lists of members, etc.

    Holdings: LDS Family History Library (in paper and on microfilm, LDS FHL microfilm number 0854301)


  • Care, Pearl B.
    History of Erving, Massachusetts, 1838-1988. -- [S.l. : s.n., 1983] (Turner Falls, MA : Pioneer Litho)
    275 p. : ill.
    "Prepared and compiled by Pearl B. Care, Anastacia Burnett, and Doris A. Felton, with Rosa S. Johnston, consultant"--Prelim. p. 4.
    Includes bibliographical references (p. [261]-263) and index.


  • Erving in retrospect / compiled by the historical committee, Lilla L.W. Brown, Charles H. Holmes, and Clarence K. Turner for the 100th anniversary celebration, July 23, 1938 ; arranged by Roy W. French. -- Orange, Mass. : Enterprise and Journal, [1938]
    [30] p. : ill.
    Cover title: Erving Massachusetts in retrospect, 1838-1938.
    "Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the incorporation of the town."



  • Erving & Wendell. -- Scale ca. 1:49,500. -- [S.l. : s.n., 185-]
    1 map ; 36 x 28 cm.
    Relief shown by hachures.
    Shows residences or landowners.
    Includes business directories of Wendell and Erving.


  • Stevens, James.
    Map of lands and water power for sale by Oliver and James Moore, Erving and Montague, Mass. / surveyed and plotted by Jas. Stevens, Engineer & S. Moore, C. Surveyor. July 1856. -- Hartford, Conn. : E. B. & E. C. Kellogg, 1856.
    1 map : col. ; 38 x 48 cm.
    1 inch = 400 feet.
    Boundaries of property in red and green.
    Coordinates indicated, both true north and by compass.
    Includes measurements of proposed dam.
    Indicates houses, trees, roads, Miller's River, and the Vt. and Mass. Railroad.


Vital Records

  • Massachusetts vital records to 1850 ff [sic]. Erving, 1844-1890. -- Oxford, Mass. : Holbrook Research Institute, 1983.
    7 microfiches.


  • Erving (Mass.). Town Clerk.
    Vital records, 1844-1900. -- Salt Lake City : Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1993.
    1 microfilm reel ; 35 mm.
    Microreproduction of original records in Erving, Massachusetts.
    Includes partial index.

    Part titles, etc.DatesLDS FHL
    microfilm numbers
    Births, marriages, and deaths1844-19001888258
    Birth certificates1860-1899
    Marriage certificates1860-1900
    Death certificates1860-1900

    Holdings: LDS Family History Library (for LDS FHL microfilm numbers, see the table above)

General Information

The following resources may provide useful information on the Erving town area.

Related Pages

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