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[p. 10] matter at a meeting held the next January, I am inclined to think the building was erected.

From about 1736 Medford seems to have had what may be called an annual school—that is, for seven or eight months each year, as this year the people voted to have a school from September to May.

On the 30th of July, 1738, they voted to have a school for the space of a year, and July 23, 1739, they voted to have an annual school.

The hiring of the master and the care of the school was usually put in the hands of a special committee, as now, but for some years before the Revolution the selectmen were charged with that duty.

The studies pursued were very few, but they sufficed. Reading, writing, and the fundamental operations in arithmetic—the three R's—were all that found a place in the course of studies in those early schools. I will spare my readers an enumeration of the things we are expected to study and teach to-day.

Beginning about 1750, at each annual meeting, after voting the minister's salary, the town immediately votes to provide a school for the ensuing year. These were the first matters attended to. Evidently the education of their children was coming to the front. And as we approach 1776, although the records throb with drumbeats and glisten with bayonets, there are no indications of any failing of that deep interest which from that day to this Medford has ever shown in her public schools.1

1 The last warrant for town meeting issued in his majesty's name was dated March 6, 1775, signed by Richard Hall, Town Clerk. Thus early it would seem the people of Medford were beginning to dream of complete independence.

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