Petition calls for Turners Falls to be renamed over controversial historical ties

Franklin County

TURNERS FALLS, Mass. (WWLP) – A petition is going around to change the name of Turners Falls to “Great Falls” due to historical controversy with the village’s namesake.

The petition has almost 2,500 signatures to officially change the village’s name.

Turners Falls is named after Captain William Turner. During the 1600s, Turner led more than 100 soldiers to surprise and destroy more than 300 Nipmuc Native Americans during an ambush in Gill, according to a monument on one side of the bridge leading from Gill to Montague and local Native American historians.

The village was named in honor of Turner after he died in that battle.

The petition calls to change the name of the village to Great Falls instead. There’s also a counter-petition with more than 1,000 signatures to keep the name of the town.

Town officials know about both petitions and are expected to address the issue soon.

22News will keep you updated on the town’s response.

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