Andover, Dracut, Tewksbury MA…Saturday morning, September 28, at 9am, Selectman from Andover, Dracut, and Tewksbury meet at a town boundary stone “witness marker” from 1908 to conduct the required Perambulation of the Town boarders.
The requirement for this ritual goes back over 200 years to ensure that the towns’ bound markers have not been moved.
It’s an ancient tradition – and legal requirement – in which officials of neighboring towns meet once every five years to walk their town boundaries to ensure nobody has moved the boundary stones
The selectmen from the 3 towns met at a witness marker from 1908: The 4’ high, 12” square granite marker is located 20’ from the bank of the Merrimack River. This witness marker is recognized due to the actual town line (center) is in the Merrimack River.
As required, the attending selectmen painted with black paint the year, 2013, and on the Andover side an “A”, on the Dracut side a “D” and the Tewksbury side a “T”.
After determining that the boundary was in the correct place and secured, the selectmen toasted to a successful perambulation, with sparkling water.
Mass General Law Chapter 42, Section 2: The boundary markers of every town shall be located, the marks thereon renewed, and the year located marked upon the face thereof which bears the letter of the town locating its boundary, once every five years, by at least two of the selectmen of the town or by two substitutes designated by them in writing. The marking shall be made with paint or other suitable marking material.
Andover Selectmen began the process in Andover, starting with North Andover selectmen representatives: Rosemary Smedile, Chair and Richard Vaillancourt, on Saturday, September 14th.