which made the tow path, the fresh waters of the Concord
floated the numerous boats, laden with merchandise from the north country for over forty years; and at the southern terminus mingled with the salt tides of old ocean, twenty-seven miles from its entrance into the Merrimack
The charter gave the directors power to lay assessments upon the stockholders.
This from time to time, as the work progressed, was done, until over a half million dollars were expended in its construction, which in the spring of 1802 was so far advanced as to allow the admission of water as far as Wilmington
, once known as the ‘Land of Nod,’ and on the fifth of July (Independence Day fell on Sunday that year), still further, to Woburn
The Columbian Centinel
of that week gave the following—
On Monday last, water was admitted to the Middlesex Canal, as far as Woburn meeting-house.
More than one hundred and twenty ladies and gentlemen embarked upon its waters.
Although the party was numerous, the construction of the boat was such that the accommodations were convenient.
This new mode of passing through a country diversified by almost every variety of landscape, produces effects the most pleasing and agreeable.
The proprietors deserve the highest praise for their enterprise.
The choice of a superintendent demands commendation.
Unwilling to acknowledge dependence upon any nation or any state, they reposed confidence in a citizen of their own. His works declare his praise. . . .Even Massachusetts, a state already proud in science, will in some future age feel an increase of pride to acknowledge her son.
This was followed by sixteen lines of verse, written after the style of Virgil, by a Dr. Darwin
(some years deceased), in which Col. Baldwin
's name was substituted.
On Baldwin's infant cradle science smiled,
And plenty, arts, and commerce freight the waves,