In the 1600s, Plum Island was used primarily for grazing livestock. The abundance of free-range horse and cattle there caused friction among Newbury, Rowley and Ipswich, who shared ownership of the land. In 1679, the General Court ordered “that no horses and cattle be allowed on the island without the consent of the major part of the proprietors of the said island.”

 — The Museum of Old Newbury

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