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Medford Historical Society Papers, Volume 12., A pioneer railroad and how it was built. (search)
t was the brilliant idea of one of the railroad officers to prevent their being counterfeited. The conductor was supposed to know everybody and discriminate at once between transients and season ticket holders. The latter were allowed one passage each way daily, but the rule was not rigidly enforced. The stations in our city were known as Medford Steps and Medford Gates. There are as many steps at the former now as then, perhaps more, but for over twenty years it has been known as Medford Hillside. The Gates has been West Medford for more than fifty years. The name was appropriate however. At all grade crossings were placed huge posts with a broad sign board spanning the street, bearing the legend, Railroad crossing, look out for the engine while the bell rings. As everything was of substantial character the letters were of iron, and once painted black. Sometimes a screw had loosened and an iron letter was missing, or hung dangling aloft, a menace to the passers beneath.