It is not lost upon folks that America is opening up from various COVID-19 orders and restrictions as we celebrate the birth of the United States of America on July 4th.  There have been four (4) Presidents of the United States of America born in Norfolk County which was established by law in 1793.  This fact has led to the designation of Norfolk County as the “County of Presidents”.  John Adams the second (2nd) President of the United States, who hailed from Norfolk County, once said about celebrating the birth of this great nation, “It will be celebrated… with pomp and parade… bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other.”


It always amazed me when reading the above quotation that President Adams had the presence of mind and insight to essentially predict how the United States of America celebrates its birth as a nation all these years later.  The celebration of our freedoms will take on a new meaning this July 4th holiday as we return to pre Coronavirus activities.  All the “little things” denied due to the Coronavirus pandemic will hopefully be savored and appreciated.  Some of these “little things” may be running a road race, a cook out with family and friends, watching fireworks displayed in our local communities or enjoying the marching bands and floats of a July 4th parade. 


The thirty-fifth (35th) President of the United States of America John F. Kennedy was born in the Norfolk County community of Brookline.  President Kennedy spoke at Independence Hall in Philadelphia on July 4, 1962 stating, “For 186 years this doctrine of national independence has shaken the globe – and it remains the most powerful force anywhere in the world today.  There are those struggling to eke out a bare existence in a barren land who have never heard of free enterprise, but who cherish the idea of independence.  There are those who are grappling with over powering problems of illiteracy and ill-health and who are ill-equipped to hold free elections.  But they are determined to hold fast to their national independence.”


The notion of independence was certainly challenged during the Coronavirus pandemic.  Yet throughout this trying period as one who is tasked with leading the Registry of Deeds I saw Registry employees rise above difficulties and obstacles while demonstrating a commitment to excellence.  Under trying circumstances with restrictions to one’s notion of independence and freedoms the employees of the Registry of Deeds came to work throughout the pandemic to keep the real estate sector of our local economy viable.  The Norfolk Registry of Deeds employees kept the Registry open and operational every work day during the COVID-19 pandemic since current Massachusetts Governor Charles Baker, who grew up in the Norfolk County town of Needham, declared a State of Emergency back on March 10, 2020.  Do you think the very first Governor of Massachusetts John Hancock who signed into law legislation establishing Norfolk County and the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds on June 20 1793 would have thought citizens would be facing such a deadly and impactful health crisis due to Coronavirus?


John Hancock is also another notable citizen born in Norfolk County who was one of Boston’s leader’s during the crisis that led to the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War in 1775.  John Hancock served more than two years in the Continental Congress in Philadelphia.  He was the first to sign the Declaration of Independence in his position as President of the Continental Congress.  Famous for his rather prominent signature on the Declaration of Independence John Hancock was quoted as saying during the signing ceremony, “There his Majesty King George can now read my name without glasses.  And he can double the reward on my head.”


The bravery of those that came before us in creating, developing and preserving this great nation of ours should never be forgotten.  We may celebrate the Fourth of July with hamburgers and hotdogs.  Let us never forget the meaning of the words written in the Declaration of Independence as we hopefully put the Coronavirus pandemic in the rear view mirror.  The forty-first (41st) President of the United States of America George Herbert Walker Bush was born in the Norfolk County community of Milton.  President Bush stated in 1989 “After 213 years, Americans can say that the experiment is a resounding success.  The Fourth of July is a time to rejoice in this success, which has inspired all who seek to break the shackles of totalitarian rule and breathe in the life-giving air of liberty.”


Enjoy your liberties and have a Happy and Healthy July 4th.     


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The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds is located at 649 High Street in Dedham.  The Registry is a resource for homeowners, title examiners, mortgage lenders, municipalities and others with a need for secure, accurate, accessible land record information.  All land record research information can be found on the Registry’s website  Residents in need of assistance can contact the Registry of Deeds Customer Service Center via telephone at (781) 461-6101, or email us at [email protected].





The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds will be closed on Thursday, July 4th in celebration of Independence Day. We are open Friday, July 5th.

The Norfolk County Registry of Deeds is closed Today, July 4th in celebration of Independence Day. We are open Friday, July 5th.