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[p. 48] the country for six weeks, have sold to Benjamin Hall of Medford, three quarters of one full share of all prizes, goods, naval or merchandise taken by said galley during said cruise, for the sum of twelve pounds now in hand to me paid by the said Benjamin Hall, the receipt whereof I hereby acknowledge, as witness my hand and seal, in guarantee.

Witnesses, Jonathan Webb and Ephraim Hall.

Benjamin Hall was, like other men of means in his day, interested in underwriting, and assumed risks individually, as there were no marine insurance companies.

Losses were frequent during the war, and the premiums were fabulous,—the usual rate being about forty-five per cent., but in some cases rising to seventy per cent.

Insurance on privateers was effected by making over to the underwriter a certain per cent. of the prize money. In 1776 Captain Hall insured three sloops for one hundred pounds each. Two were lost. The third, the ‘Rover,’ made a successful cruise, and Mr. Hall received ninety pounds in prize money.

The times proved too much for the capitalist before the war was over. In 1784 he said, ‘When the war began, I would not have exchanged property with any man in the county of Middlesex, but now I am worth nothing.’

As a paper has already been read before you in which Governor Brooks has been spoken of at length, I have devoted very little time to him to-night, but I wish to say that the more I study his military and private life, the more I venerate and admire him.

Medford may feel honored for all time, to count among her sons this friend of Lafayette and George Washington.

One by one the landmarks of the olden time have disappeared. A few are left—among them the Watson House, where General Brooks entertained Washington

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