Vol. I No. 10 12/15/2020
by Rick Wilcox
Patrick H. Craughwell, Stockbridge's first Police Officer
(The Great and General Court of the Massachusetts Bay in New England)
In Council June 23rd 1739
Ordered that Ephraim Williams Esqr., Capt. John and Lt. Aaron Umpechene , principal
Inhabitants of the plantation in the County of Hampshire on Housatonic river lately erected
into a Township by the name of------*
Be and are hereby fully authorized & impowered to notify the freeholders and other qualified Voters (to meet) there as soon as may be in some convenient place in said Town in order to choose Town Clerk and all other Town Officers to stand till the next meeting of the said Town in March next
Sent down for concurrence Simon Frost, Deputy
In the house of Representatives, June 23rd 1739,
Read and concurred John Quincy Speaker
27th Consented to: J. Belcher
Stockbridge July ye 11 1739
At a town meeting legally assembled the
Ephraim Williams Esqr. Moderator
Timothy Woodbridge Town Clerk
Capt. John Konkapot and Aaron Umpachene
Selectmen Josiah Jones, Constable
Other early Constables included Hendrick Wohpongseet in 1760, Robert Nungkauwat (son of John Konkapot) in 1762, Joseph Quunauquunt in 1764, Ephraim Paumkkaunkum also in 1764, Jacob Tusnuck 1767, Timothy Yokun 1769, Joseph Mhuttaune 1770, Jehoiakim Mhtocksin in 1771 and 1772, Daniel Wauwaupequenot in 1773 to name just a few.
Although Stockbridge appointed Constables throughout its history, the first police officer in the modern sense was Patrick H. Craughwell. In 1898 he was reappointed at a salary of $60.00 per month.
Selectmen's Records Stockbridge April 10th 1896
Patrick H. Craughwell
At a meeting of the Board of Selectmen of the Town of Stockbridge held this day for the
You are hereby appointed as a Police Officer in and for the Town of Stockbridge agreeable to Section 7 Chapter 423 of the Acts of 1893. At a salary of $60 Dollars per-month, and with all the powers of Constable except the powers of serving and executing civil process, to hold and discharge the duties of your office during the pleasure of the Board of Selectmen and when on duty, you are authorized to carry a club not exceeding eighteen inches in length, and such other fire arms as is necessary in the discharge of your duties. Before entering upon your duties you are required to take the oath of office.
Fred S. Aymar, James Burns, Charles E. Callender Selectmen of Stockbridge
*Editor's note: Originally Stockbridge was in Hampshire County and had no name.