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Sheffield, Massachusetts  01257

The first English settler to cross the "hideous howling wilderness" into Berkshire County was Matthew Noble of Westfield who arrived in 1725. The following spring he returned to Westfield and brought his sixteen year old daughter, Hannah, to keep house for him. The township had been purchased from Chief Konkapot and other Stockbridge Indians in 1724. Purchase price was 460 Pounds, three barrels of cider and thirty quarts of rum. It covered an area 18 miles by 12 miles centered on the Housatonic River. Proprietor's records and a survey were taken by Captain John Ashley, Ebenezer Pomeroy and Thomas Ingersoll. This Committee was to advance the settlement of the town by selecting persons who would become permanent residents. Home lots were drawn in three divisions, and the town was incorporated in 1733. The town had some of the best land in the county and as a result had a population that, for the first half of the nineteenth century, was the largest in the county, save Pittsfield.

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