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[p. 72]

Excuse me for this burst of pessimism. I sometimes find the electric car mighty convenient.

To go on with the square and its neighborhood. The present stone bridge is certainly a great improvement on the wooden structure with its teetering draw, which preceded it. It used to be said (our genial fellowciti-zen Mr. Henry Moore is my authority) that our military company, the Brooks Phalanx, after partaking of their annual dinner at the Medford House, found considerable difficulty in dealing with the perturbations of the drawbridge; that they practised a sort of involuntary goosestep, and did a good deal of marching without making much progress. But this was an old-time bit of chaff that never had any substantial foundation. The members of the Phalanx were sober and respectable citizens, and were no more perplexed with the up-and-down motion of the drawbridge than other travellers. I shall always stand by the Phalanx. What pride the old boys of Medford used to take in that company! How we admired the colossal form of Capt. Samuel Blanchard, dressed in a blue uniform with buff facings, his shoulders crowned with an enormous pair of gold epaulets! We followed the Phalanx in the May training in all its marchings and counter-marchings, from Symmes' corner to the Malden line, striving ineffectually to keep step to the music of the band. I remember that the ladies of Medford presented a stand of colors to the company. I wonder if they are in existence now!

But to resume. I have to indulge in episodes; memory runs away with me.

About the time of the building of the railroad station that part of Main street between the bridge and Jonathan Porter's store, now Yerxa and Yerxa's, underwent great changes. A wooden building used to occupy the present site of Bigelow's brick block next the river. This building, or a part of it, was tenanted by Mr. Patrick Conolly, a tall, thin Irishman of severe aspect, a cobbler by profession. General Lawrence tells of Mr.

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