In the eighteenth century, Massachusetts granted unappropriated land to the veterans of Sir William Phipps' expedition against French-held Canada in 1690, as compensation for their services. Whole townships were granted to certain military companies, and became known as Canada townships. These were located in the northern extremes of Massachusetts, and in the District of Maine, then part of Massachusetts. Several Canada Townships were found in 1740 to lie within the territory of New Hampshire, and additional land within Maine was conveyed to the disappointed proprietors.
Eight Canada townships were granted in south-central New Hampshire—among them, Beverly Canada (now Weare), Rowley Canada (now Rindge), Salem Canada (now Lyndeborough and Wilton) and Ipswich Canada (now New Ipswich). Original and replacement grants were made in western Maine—among them, Sudbury Canada (now Bethel), Phipps Canada (now Jay and Canton), and Sylvester Canada (now Turner). The townships were usually named either for the proprietors' town of residence in Massachusetts, or to honor a commanding officer.
As some of these townships lay within a few hundred miles of the Canadian border, many have mistakenly assumed that they once were part of Canada. This was never the case.
See also Narragansett Township