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[139] The house of Dea. Ephraim Cutter and Col. Thomas Russell's store to the right, both of which are still standing. In the distance, beyond Dea. Cutter's, is seen John Frost's blacksmith shop. To the left, in the distance beyond the burying-ground, is seen one of the buildings of the card factory. The building on the corner on the left of the picture was Gershom Swan's chair factory.


In the first town book is a scattered record of births, marriages and deaths, which in part is embraced in the Genealogical Register, based on the parochial records, and placed at the end of this volume.

In 1820 the town authorized the purchase of a fire-engine.1


By act of the legislature, Feb. 14, 1821, the provisions of an act passed Feb. 16, 1789, to prevent the destruction of the fish called shad and alewives in Mystic River, within the towns of Cambridge, Charlestown and Medford, were extended to the town of West Cambridge. By this act committees were chosen annually for the preservation of fish in the town.


Persons additional to the selectmen were chosen on the school committee.

A committee was authorized by the town to select land and build a new School-house in the Northwest District, and make sale of the former School-house, in 1822.


The town provided for the inoculation of the inhabitants with the cow-pox. Gen. Lafayette was in West Cambridge in 1824, on the occasion of his visit to his old comrade in arms Gov. Brooks, at Medford (see Hist. Medford, 140-42), and also on his visit to the town of Lexington (see Hist. Lexington, 286-88).2

1 Previous to this period there was a small hand fire-engine, called the Friendship, kept in a small house erected for it a rod or two west of the house of the late George C. Russell. It was manned by a company of young men, mostly employes of the Whittemore Card Factory. They had meetings on the first Tuesday in every month, except in winter, about an hour before sunset, when they would race with the machine about the Common, and exercise its power in vain attempts to play over the vane of the meeting-house. Its members were thus excused from military duty.

In 1816 a small dwelling occupied by Mr. Parker, a shoemaker, just below Tufts's tavern, was burnt. This occasioned the town to procure fire implements, hooks, ladders, &c., some of which were kept in the cellar of Mr. Fiske's church.—J. B. Russell.

2 Kossuth received honors from the citizens of West Cambridge during his visit to Lexington in 1862.—See Hist. Lexington, 299, 300.

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