Windsor Massachusetts, 1890
Windsor is situated in the northeastern part of Berkshire County, about 150 miles from Boston, and 12 miles from Pittsfield and 7 from Dalton by highway. The last two afford the nearest railway stations. The villages are Windsor Hill (Windsor P.O.) at the centre, and East Windsor (P.O.), or Jordanville, in the extreme southeast.
Savoy bounds this town on the north; Plainfield and Cummington, on the east; Peru and Hinsdale, on the south; and Dalton and Cheshire on the west. The farms are reported in the State census as containing 23,204 acres, of which 7,306 acres were woodland. The assessed area is 21,795 acres. The township is about seven miles in length and five in breadth. The geological structure is calcareous gneiss and the Quebec group, in which abound the minerals, zoisite, actinolite and rutile. The general surface is not greatly varied in altitude, yet there are several considerable elevations, of which the most prominent is Windsor Hill, near the centre, which bears a Congregational church and the chief village. A picturesque pond, covering 107 acres, in the northeastern corner, is a principal source of the Westfield River; which, with its branches, drains the eastern, while the streams forming the East Branch of the Housatonic, drain the western section of the town. A very pleasing feature in the scenery is the Wahconah Falls, on one of the latter streams in the southwestern corner. The water here tumbles over a rocky precipice some 70 feet, filling the air with spray and music, and forming one of the finest scenic pictures in this region.
Orchards of the sugar maple abound; and there are not less than 23 sugar-houses. Apples are a fair crop, good stocks of cattle are kept, and large quantities of butter made. The value of the product of the 118 farms in 1885 was $121,271. Two saw mills. and three grist mills were operated in the town. Wooden-ware, edge-tools, scythe-stones and leather are the other principal manufactures. The aggregate value of goods made was $11,311. The population was 657; of whom 163 were legal voters. The valuation in 1888 was $210,579, with a tax-rate of $15 on $1,000. There were 138 assessed dwelling-houses. The eight public school-houses were valued at $2,000. The East Library Association has some 300 volumes.
The land of this town was originally purchased by Noah Nash, June 2, 1762, for £1,430. It was incorporated July 2, 1771, under the name of "Gageborough," in compliment to Governor Thomas Gage ("General Gage"), but the name was changed in 1778 to the present one. The Indian name was Ouschanpamaug.
pp. 708-709 in Nason and Varney's Massachusetts Gazetteer, 1890