1795The town By-Laws were approved by the state government.Government and Public Service, City Government

By-Laws approved by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Gloucester Town Records, 1753-1800, pp. 408-414.
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By-Laws approved by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Gloucester Town Records, 1753-1800, pp. 408-414.

There were 22 By-Laws, many of which concerned the safety of town inhabitants, particularly fire prevention. Chimneys had to be swept twice a year, pumps and wells had to be kept in good order, and no one was permitted to “light or smoke any Segar or Pipe after ten of the clock in the open air to endanger the property of any of the Inhabitants.”

Other By-Laws addressed the dangers of unruly dogs and horses galloping in the streets, and the activities of inhabitants on the Sabbath: “Whoever shall profane the Lord’s Day by Swimming or Skating or Sailing about in boats in the Harbour of this Town or publicly exercising themselves without necessity in any part of this town” would be fined five shillings. (Town Records, 408-414)

The By-Laws were approved by the Massachusetts General Sessions of Peace. Fines for breaches of the Bye-Laws were to be used for the poor. Gloucester Town Records, 1753-1800. Vol. 3, 1800, http://archive.org/details/townrecords17531800
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