Bridge of Flowers, Shelburne Falls - photo by Peter MacDonaldBridge of Flowers, Shelburne Falls (photo by Peter MacDonald)

Gill offers education, recreation and quiet, peaceful living opportunities within its 15 square miles. Gill is 7 miles east of Greenfield, 36 miles north of Springfield and 95 miles northwest of Boston. The river forms most of the town's boundary with Northfield, to the east, and separates the town from Erving to the southeast, and Montague to the south. The 1,500 residents live mostly in single-family homes, although there is one development of condominiums. Gill is the home of the co-ed Northfield Mount Hermon School, known in the last century as the Mount Hermon School for Boys.

 

Attractions

  • Gill Historical Collection is located in the former Riverside School on Route 2. Consisting of two rooms, it features many reminders of the town's history, early Gill photographs, including items and pictures related to fossils, artifacts, letters of important scientists who studied and created collections found at Gill sites along the Connecticut River, poetry and writing of early Gill residents, ice cutting implements, farm implements, and old newspapers. Among the photographs is the famous shot of the science building burning at Mt. Hermon School while a football game is being played. The collection is run by the Historical Commission. Open by appointment. (413) 863-8103

  • Barton Cove Boat Ramp provides access to the Connecticut River on Route 2 less than a mile east of the Gill-Montague Bridge. The ramp is operated by the state Department of Conservation and Recreation. Closed during the winter. FirstLight operates a private camping, picnic and canoe launching area several hundred yards to the east. (413) 863-9300

  • French King Bridge, on Route 2, spans the Connecticut River between Gill and Erving, providing scenic views to the north and south, where the Millers River empties into the Connecticut. The iron bridge was built in 1932 and renovated in 1992. It's a popular tourist stop during foliage season.

  • Stacy Mountain Preserve, one mile off of the French King Highway is a 169-mile preserve of rich forest, cliffs, and vernal pools in the Connecticut River's French King Gorge. The site is accessible by automobile and visitors are welcome. There is a marked trail, steep in places, off Pisgah Mountain Road. For further information, see their website.

  • Common People Concerts, free weekly concerts on the town common Tuesdays (June through August) featuring acts ranging from reggae to members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Check the events calendar on the Town's website.

History

Gill, incorporated September 28, 1793, was originally part of Deerfield and was included in the portion set off from Deerfield June 9, 1753, as the district of Greenfield, which became a township that same year. The first settlers on the land that became Gill, who arrived before 1753 and lived later that 1793, were therefore inhabitants of the towns of Deerfield, Greenfield and Gill, successively, even though they never moved. Some residents of Northfield also became inhabitants of Gill when the "Grass Hill" section of Northfield was annexed on February 28, 1795.

The land within its boundaries was settled too late to figure largely in the hazards of Indian attacks, although one important incident occurred within its area. On May 19, 1676, Captain William Turner, after whom neighboring Turners Falls was named, and his troops attacked Indians camped near the Connecticut River falls and their victory helped establish the premanence of Deerfield and other settlements in the valley.

Geographically, the town lies in a wide, irregular bend of the Connecticut River as it makes an abrupt turn northwestward in its southern course at the mouth of the Millers River. Across the river to the east are the towns of Erving and Northfield, and to the south is Montague. Fall River separates it from Greenfield, and Bernardston forms most of the northern border.

The first town meeting was held December 18, 1793, with Moses Bascom as moderator. Elected officers were Moses Bascom Jr. as town clerk and treasurer, Moses Bascom, William Smalley and Noah Munn as selectmen and assessors and David Squires as constable.

The town is named in honor of Moses Gill, a member of Massachusetts' Executive Council who became lieutenant govenor in 1794 and acting governor in 1799 when Governor Increase Sumner died. Gill died in 1800, leaving the state without a governor and acting governor for the first and only time in its history.

Gill for many years benefited from river traffic. The "Grass Hill" section eventually became home to noted evangelist Dwight L. Moody's Mount Hermon School in 1881, which merged with Northfield School for girls to become Northfield Mount Hermon School.

Website

For more information, visit the Gill Town Website.

Demographics

Area 14.39 sq. mi.
2016 Population  1,432
2016 Registered voters  1,083
FY15 Tax Rate $16.85
2011 Per Capita Income $21,390
2016 Average single family tax bill $3,296


Contacts

Town Hall
325 Main Road, Gill, 01354
(413) 863-9347
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Lynda Hodsdon Mayo (413) 863-8103
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Ray Purington (413) 863-9347 
Selectboard (chair) John R. Ward, Greg Snedeker, Randy Crochier
Assessors (chair) Ray Purington, Nancy Griswold
Board of Health (chair) Douglas Edson, Randy Crochier, Edward Galipault Jr. 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Veronica LaChance  (413) 863-2105 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. David Hastings (413) 863-9398 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Gene Beaubien (413) 863-8955 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Mitchell LaClaire Sr. (413) 863-2324 
Gill-Montague Regional School Superintendent Dr. Michael Sullivan (413) 863-9324 
Franklin Co. Tech School Superintendent Richard Martin (413) 863-4239
Slate Memorial Library Jocelyn Catros-Santos (librarian) (413) 863-2591 
Building Inspector/Franklin County Cooperative
Inspection Program
James Hawkins (413) 774-3167 x.109

 

 

"My husband is a motorcycle enthusiast and likes riding the Mohawk Trail"
"The county is peppered with old and new all mixed up"
"An air of peace and tranquility"
"Real community authenticity. Franklin County is not pseudo anything."
"More down to earth, no pretense, real people."
     
Go To Top