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[150] Independence). Accordingly, “on Thursday morning, September 1, about half-past 4, two hundred and sixty troops, under the command of Lieut.-Col. Maddison, embarked at Long Wharf, Boston, in thirteen boats, sailed up Mystic River, landed at Temple's farm (Ten Hills), marched to the powder-house, and removed all the powder in it, two hundred and fifty half-barrels, to Castle William.” This clandestine act of power, executed on the very borders of Medford, called forth here the deepest indignation, and made every man ready for the issue which it foreshadowed. It is impossible now to conceive of the excitement which this act produced.

“Five boats” had been built, and “the Selectmen of Medford were ordered to take a party of men to Charlestown Neck, to launch them, and carry them up Mystic River.” And this was done.

We find the inhabitants of Medford again assembled; and, Feb. 1, 1775, two Representatives, Benjamin Hall, and Stephen Hall, 3d, are sent to the Provincial Congress at Cambridge. Medford now, as one man, enrolled itself, and stood ready at the first tap of the drum. Signs of terrible portent abound; and soon comes the 19th of April. A beacon-fire has been lighted; a horseman rides at full speed through the streets of Medford; the bell rings, drums beat, all doors fly open. The awful tidings have already spread over the county, and will soon penetrate the adjoining States. The workshops, the brickyards, the counting-houses, and the corn-fields are all deserted. The horse is suddenly loosed from the plough, and the plough left in the furrow. Women collect to ask if they can do any thing, and then hasten to help fathers, husbands, and sons. All eyes are strained to see, all ears to hear, and every heart palpitates as before the lightning flash of an overhanging cloud. The time has come. The British regulars are marching from Boston to Lexington for plunder and hostility. Patriotism reddens every American cheek at the announcement of this fact. The heart of the whole town moves as by one pulsation. There needs no conscription here. All are ready. The auroral blush of liberty is in the sky. They seize their rifle and their fowling-piece, they fill their powder-horn and cartridge-box, they store their knapsack and roll up their blanket; and then, with quickened step and firm resolve, heart answering to heart, the fearless patriot band take up their solemn march

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