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[p. 76] citizens headed by Deacon Thomas Willis were chosen to ascertain ‘whether it was best to build a new meeting-house or to enlarge the old.’ On July 19, 1716, at an adjourned town-meeting, this committee reported their decision that a new meeting-house should be built, to be 50 feet long, 38 feet broad and 27 feet stud, and to cost £ 450. Nearly three years elapsed before action was taken on this committee's report and then (February 9, 1719) it was voted down. Another year went by and this time (March 7, 1720) the town sought advice from neighboring citizens, asking that ‘five gentlemen be chosen from neighboring towns to give their advice whether it will be most convenient for the town at present to build a new meeting-house or enlarge the old one.’ One week later the question was raised in the adjourned town-meeting as to whether the town was going to abide by and rest satisfied with the determination of this committee, and this was given an affirmative vote; and within two (2) months came a vote of the town refusing to raise any money for erecting a new meeting-house.

The Committee of Five from neighboring towns considered the matter until February 20, 1721, when evidently they rendered a report favorable to a new meeting-house; but the town refused to accept the result of the committee's work, thereby going back upon the vote of the year before. This aroused a protest, signed by twenty citizens of the western section, dissenting from this vote of refusal to accept the committee's report, as illegal. The signers also affirmed that they had been to some considerable trouble to procure land and remove encumbrances in view of a proposed new meeting-house.

It was then midsummer of the year 1722, and the honored Committee of Five whose favorable report for a new meeting-house had not been accepted, now found the town ready to reconsider and to accept their report. Which action immediately stirred up the people of the eastern end, who dissented from such a vote and brought

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