Woodcock Garrison House

Woodcock "Garrison" House

The first settler in what was then known as the Attleborough Territory was John Woodcock, who had a farm of three hundred acres on the Ten Mile River. Woodcock built his house in 1669 and was licensed the following year to open a public house or tavern. He was warned to "keep good order" and that "no unruliness or ribaldry be permitted there." Woodcock's house was just one of several "garrison houses" built for protection against possible Indian attacks. Similar "garrison houses" were located in settlements such as Dedham, Seekonk and Swansea. In a cruel twist of fate, Woodcock's "garrison house" failed to offer protection for a member of his own family.

In April 1676, during King Philip's War, Woodcock's son, Nathaniel, was killed by Indians while working in a nearby corn field. The Indians cut off Nathaniel's head and stuck it on a pole in front of the house. Nathaniel Woodcock was buried where he fell, and his grave is now in the center of what would become the Woodcock Cemetery. John Woodcock sold his farm in 1694 and it had several subsequent owners. The house that is known to us today is not the original Woodcock Garrison House but a small addition to the original, which was torn down in 1806. The addition was moved back a little to where it is located today and became a tavern. It was later turned into a dwelling house known as the "Aunt Cynthia Hatch House" and later purchased by Bill and Dorothy Rice who restored it and then sold it to its current owners, the North Attleborough Historical Society.

362 North Washington St
North Attleboro, MA 02760
Phone: 508-695-6748

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