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[p. 18]

In 17521 another epidemic made its appearance. Although this was slight, yet it was attended with the usual horrors of this loathsome disease. On May 11, 1752, the freeholders voted that the Selectmen be empowered to provide some suitable house or houses for the reception of all persons who were taken with the smallpox, or those who were suspected.

It appeared again in 1760, in the town, and the only record that we have of it is in the Treasurer's report. The report states that on Feb. 19, 1760, £ 5, i shilling and 8 pence was raised to Mr. William Tufts and another townsman, for watching at the smallpox house. The treasurer also adds, ‘to myself and horse to Charlestown for the Doctor for Thomas Linch 2s/8.’ Another part of the report also states that money was paid to certain persons who furnished Captain Willis and other persons with blankets and other furnishings during their illness. One of the victims of this epidemic was the schoolmaster, William Whitmore, who died March 10, 1760, and because of his death the schools were closed till the July following.

The smallpox, after having been for four years in abeyance, renewed its visitation in 1764.2 The warrant, which was issued ‘in his Majesty's name,’ April 13, 1764, called all the freeholders together for a consideration of the raging epidemic. At the meeting it was voted that a gate should be erected across the main road, and a smoke house be built near the Medford great bridge (which is now Cradock bridge). This house was erected on the west side of Main street, and about forty rods from Colonel Royall's house. It was also voted that another should be erected at the West End, and suitable guards be kept at the town's expense. The Selectmen were to take full responsibility for the erection of the fences and houses, and were to provide a guard of such persons as they saw fit. The idea of erecting a gate across the main road was a good one,

1 Town Records, Volume III., page 80.

2 Town Records, Volume III., page 131.

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