Canton Town History Continued

The Canton "Viaduct",  was built in 1835. The structure was built by Irish immigrants. The granite was quarried locally in Canton and neighboring Sharon. The Viaduct was the final link between Boston and Providence, Rhode Island. This structure is on the National Historic Register.

The History of Canton, Massachusetts begins in 1630 with the Incorporation of the Town of Dorchester. In 1637, Dorchester extended its boundaries to "beyond the Great Blew Hills", this area included today's towns of Canton, Stoughton, Sharon and others. This area was also known as "Dorchester South Precinct" and the "New Grant". At this time Dorchester was the largest town in New England. In 1726, the portion of Dorchester which comprised Stoughton, Canton and Sharon wanted to be annexed from their mother town. So in March of 1726 the new Town of Stoughton was created, comprising these three towns. Stoughton was named for Lt. Governor William Stoughton, who presided at the Salem, Mass., Witch Trials in the 1690's. In the year 1765, the Second Parish (Sharon), wanted to be annexed from Stoughton, so it was to be. In 1796, the First Parish decided they wanted their freedom, a man named Elijah Dunbar thought the new town was antipodal to Canton, China, he was wrong of course. So, on February 23, 1797, Canton became her own town. Two other proposed names for Canton were "Freedom" and "Danbury". The town is planning a year long Bicentennial Celebration.

I would like to thank the Canton Historical Society for allowing us to use the History of Canton, if you would like to learn more about Canton History please visit the Canton Historical Society.