painted, in his front hall, and when an alarm of fire was sounded it was his duty to seize those buckets, hurry to the fire, and range in line with others to assist in passing water from well or cistern to the men who worked the engine.’
In 1846 the ‘boys' company,’ so called because composed of young men from sixteen to twenty years old, was organized.
According to some of its members, David A. Sanborn
was assistant foreman.
Other members were Quincy A. Vinal
, Robert A. Vinal
, Albert L. Sanborn
, and Daniel Sanborn
In November, 1849, the town appropriated money for the purchase of a ‘good and sufficient fire engine.’
It was styled Somerville
, Number 1.
The selectmen appointed a board of fire engineers, and more than fifty men at once enrolled in the company.
Soon it was one of the leading and most popular organizations in the town, and as such was closely identified with the social life here.
There was a patriotic spirit in it, too, for the first flagstaff in town was put up by the firemen in 1853, in Union Square. They also contributed liberally toward the first building erected by the Methodists, on Webster Avenue. In 1865 the hose company was organized, and David A. Sanborn
and Jairus Mann
were sent by the town to New York to select a hand hose carriage.
Proceeding now to the second generation from John Stone
, we see a group of cousins, young men and maidens, who met in the social life of the time.
Some had spent their schooldays at the old Milk Row School; the younger ones may have attended a school at Central Square. A few had been given further privileges in the educational line.
One of the sports which many, if not most, of the young men of the time enjoyed was gunning.
The marshes of Chelsea
were convenient and favorite places for this pastime; possibly Walnut Hill
, where Tufts College is now, also.
When guns got out of order it fell to the mechanic of the crowd, familiarly called ‘Jonty,’ to repair the same.
Balls, with dancing often prolonged till daylight, were another recreation.
The young women had their sewing circle, and doubtless developed ability in buying cloth and cutting and making garments.