the whole to Gershom Cutter, who sold to Samuel Cutter, who sold to George T. Goodwin, its present owner. This mill has had various fortunes, and, by turns, has done all sorts of work. Whether it has been most successful in grinding grain or mustard-seeds or paints, or in sawing mahogany and turning wood, we know not. May 10, 1766: It was again suggested “to build a gristmill near the great bridge.” But it was not done. May 12, 1791: The town voted “not to allow any one to build a mill near the great bridge.” The mills of Baconville are mentioned under the head of manufactures. They had at first a checkered fortune, as devoted to clothing and falling, as saw and grist mills, as screw-factory, foundery, door and sash, leather, and snuff factories. To their present owners they would have been very profitable, if frequent fires had not consumed them. Mills carried by steam-engines are now becoming common; and families are supplied with meal by the regular traders.
New England, if not the first in the New World, which was opened under a charter derived from a legislature, with tolls regulated by law. The enterprising citizens of Medford were among the first movers of the project, and the steadiest helpers of the work. It contributed so much to the wealth of our town, by inducing ship-builders to settle and work among us, that a notice of it belongs to our records. I find the following statistics in an “Historical Sketch of the Middlesex Canal,” gathered by their faithful agent, Caleb Eddy, Esq., and dated 1843:--
In the month of May, 1793, a number of gentlemen associated “for opening a canal from the waters of the Merrimac, by Concord River, or in some other way, through the waters of Mystic River, to the town of Boston.” There were present at this meeting the Hon. James Sullivan, Benjamin Hall, Willis Hall, Ebenezer Hall, Jonathan Porter, Loammi Baldwin, Ebenezer Hall, jun., Andrew Hall, and Samuel Swan, Esq. After organizing, by the choice of Benjamin Hall as chairman, and Samuel Swan as clerk, “the Hon. James Sullivan, Loammi Baldwin, and Captain Ebenezer Hall, were chosen a committee to attend the General Court, in order to obtain an act of incorporation, ”