All the carrying being done by ox or horse power, these establishments were well filled every night. As a boy I remember seeing the crowds of heavy teams which put up at the six or eight taverns in Charlestown, the Russell house at the Neck and the old ‘Middlesex’ at Reed's Corner being particularly remembered. It was, therefore, in such a country with these primitive customs in vogue that we find ourselves at the beginning of the 19th century. The argument was to shorten the route to Charlestown bridge, which served now as the inlet of the whole northern country to Boston—to open a direct, level and thoroughly constructed road from Medford to connect with this highway,—to connect also with Milk Row road and the new Cambridge bridge. As in the case of the Middlesex Canal, so in the movement which resulted in the building of the turnpike, Medford people were prominent. Three of the five incorporators of the turnpike corporation, Benjamin Hall, John Brooks, and Ebenezer Hall, were also among the petitioners for an act to incorporate the Canal company ten years previous (1793). On the 2nd of March, 1803, the charter declared that the above-named with Fitch Hall and Samuel Buel and all such persons as are or shall be associated with them and their successors shall be a corporation by the name of ‘The Medford Turnpike Corporation’; and shall by that name sue and be sued, and enjoy all the privileges and powers which are by law incident to corporations, for the purpose of laying out and making a turnpike road from the easterly side of the road nearly opposite to Dr. Luther Stearns' house in Medford, and running easterly of Winter hill and ‘Ploughed Hill’ to the east side of the road opposite to Page's Tavern, near the Neck in Charlestown, and for keeping the same in repair.
Their eyes were weary with dust and gleam,
The day had gone like an empty dream.
Soft may they slumber and trouble no more,
For their eager journey with its jolt is o'er.
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