Suffolk County, Massachusetts Bay Colony (New England)

Suffolk County was created by the Massachusetts Bay Colony on 10 May 1643 as one of its four original counties, along with Essex, Middlesex and the Old Norfolk. It had an undefined western border and established and claimed territory as far west as Woodstock, Connecticut. Suffolk County initially included Boston, Roxbury, Dorchester, Dedham, Braintree, Weymouth, Hingham, and Nantasket, which is now Hull, and in 1671, Mendon was added from Middlesex County. Briefly, from 1686 to 1689, the county was part of the Dominion of New England, and eventually became part of the Royal colony of Massachusetts Bay. All towns to the south became part of Norfolk County when it was created in 1793, leaving only Boston and Chelsea in Suffolk County. Hingham and Hull protested their removal and remained in Suffolk County until they were transferred to Plymouth County in 1803. Boston was incorporated as a city in 1822 and began annexing towns back: Roxbury (1868), Dorchester (1870), Brighton (1874), Charlestown (1874), West Roxbury (1874), and Hyde Park (1912). Suffolk's county government was abolished in 1999, but its former jurisdiction is used for state offices as a district.