the Mercury began its long career, and two years later acquired the Chronicle's interest by purchase.
During the agitation of the town hall proposition, its editor visited Marblehead at request and inspected the municipal building, Abbot Hall, which had been but recently erected at a cost of $70,000, wrote an elaborately detailed description of it, and by courtesy of the Marblehead Messenger presented an excellent view of that structure, heading its two-column article.
This appeared on March 28, 1884, and is (doubtless) the first illustration to appear in the Medford press, and this because, in the opinion of leading citizens, its like would suitably fill the bill in Medford.
They certainly had lofty aspirations, as Abbot Hall was surmounted by a tower one hundred and seventy-five feet high.
By action of the town which followed, its committee secured a tentative plan for a new structure, but with a less lofty tower, a framed portrayal of which hung in the municipal office of the ol
orical rooms, where the librarian carefully arranged them, but found two volumes (for the years 1884 and 1885) missing.
Later (a labor of love) they were wire-stitched and bound in heavy covers of builders felt and kept flat in a filing case in the library.
Since that time we had occasion to seek information contained in those that are missing.
Our only resort was the public library.
Some bundles were brought us and with the utmost care we examined them till we found in the issue of March 28, 1884, the object of our search—the first illustration (other than advertising cuts) used in a Medford paper.
It was a view of Abbot Hall, the municipal building of Marblehead, reproduced by the courtesy of the Marblehead Messenger,—a result of the town hall agitation.
Since then the various Medford papers have been more or less illustrated, especially since the camera became so popular.
It is a great help to the journalist.
A source of regret it is that from 1857 to 1880, and practicall