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[p. 16] Street bridge, then not in existence. His home was at the corner of South street and Maple avenue, and until a few years ago was occupied by his daughter. Mr. Peter Lewis built a small vessel on the north bank of the river, just east of the Lowell Railroad bridge. Another was built at the wharf where the new armory stands. The hulls of vessels of a thousand tons burden have been built west of the bridge, which was twice widened to accommodate larger craft. Once in a while a vessel would be caught in the draw and teams were obliged to go around through Arlington and Cambridge, or via Malden bridge, to reach Boston. It was a pretty sight to see a large vessel on the way down the river, depending on the tide, and men with tow lines (no steam tugs in those days), and with Capt. John P. Clisby, the pilot, standing in the bow giving his orders. He was a large man, with a florid complexion, and looked every inch the sea captain. The river pilots, beside Capt. Clisby, that the writer can remember, were Benjamin and Reuben Williamson, William Snowdon, and James Porter. The town sold fishing privileges, and Seth, John, and Oliver Tufts, Thomas Huffmaster, and others, were in the business. An observer on the bridge could see flounders and sculpins in the clear water at low tide. Seals were sometimes captured, and bass were often caught with hook and line. At the parting of Mystic Ponds, fish were caught by seines where the dam is now. There were a few beaches where seines were set for catching alewives; wagon loads of these were often taken, salted, and shipped south. A few shad were captured in this way. Joseph and Milton James, before 1845, had a lumber yard on Main street, at the southwest corner of the bridge. Mr. Joseph James lived just south of the yard, where Ames' paint shop, No. 49 Main street, stands.
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