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Thursday, October 18, 2012
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Town Meeting Auctions Poor Woman to Lowest Bidder

On this day in 1786, Malden's selectmen put up for "vendue" Mary Degresha, who was unable to support herself. They auctioned her off to the lowest bidder, who agreed to accept payment of six dollars a week for housing and "taking proper care" of her. For two centuries, Massachusetts towns were responsible for supporting those who...
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