Some old Medford houses and estates.
The Wilson and Blanchard houses.
[Read before the Medford
Historical Society, January 18, 1904.]
HE Wilson House stood about one-eighth of a mile southeast of the old Wellington farm house, upon land granted by the General Court to Mr. John Wilson
The records of the court holden in Boston
, April 1, 1634, say: ‘There is two hundred acres of land granted to Mr. John Wilson
, Pastor of the Church
, lying next the land granted to Mr. Nowell
on the south, and next to Meadford on the north.’
This house was no doubt built soon after the date of Mr. Wilson
Mr. Charles Brooks
, in his History of Medford
(1855), says: ‘The cellar of the house was small and deep, the cellar wall of stone, and the chimney was built of brick, laid up with clay.’
The location of this house can still be seen.
The twelfth day of the twelfth month, 1650, Mr. Wilson
sold his farm, consisting of two hundred acres of land, with dwelling house and other buildings, to Mr. Thomas Blanchard
After the death of Mr. Blanchard
his estate was divided among his sons, and under date of August 27, 1657, Nathaniel Blanchard
, son of Thomas
, deeded to his brother Samuel ‘Ten acres of upland, known by the name of the flax grounds, on which the said Samuel
is now erecting a dwelling house.’
This land was bounded westerly by the creek between it and Meadford farm; northeasterly on land of George Blanchard
; southerly on land of the said Nathaniel
; and northwesterly, partly on a pine swamp, [p. 50]
and partly on pasture land of George Blanchard
Here we have the exact date of the erection of the house, now known as the old Wellington farm house, as the above description of the land upon which Mr. Blanchard
built his house is the same land upon which the old farm house now stands—a rare instance of our ability to fix upon the age of our old buildings.
The pine swamp above referred to was part of the Cradock grant, and was sold by Mr. Edward Collins
to Mr. George Blanchard
This lot of land is known by the name of the stump marsh and also as the dike marsh.
The stumps of those pine trees are today scattered plentifully in the marsh, both inside and outside of the dike; some of these stumps stand in marshland which is covered by salt water every high course of tides.
Does this indicate a subsidence of this land since the settlement of the country?
The Wilson and Blanchard houses were originally situated in the town of Charlestown
, and are referred to in this paper, because of their immediate connection with Medford
The Peter Tufts houses.
Standing on Riverside avenue at the present time is an old brick house, commonly known as the Cradock house
It takes its name from Mr. Mathew Cradock
, a London merchant, who was at one time supposed to have been its owner and builder.
was the first governor of the Massachusetts Bay Company.
never came to New England
He appointed agents for the transaction of his business here.) In March, 1634, the General Court provided that ‘All the ground, as well upland as meadow, lying and being betwixt the lands of Mr. Nowell
and Mr. Wilson
on the east; and the partition betwixt Mistick Ponds on the west; bounded with Mistick River on the south, and the Rocks
on the north, is granted to Mr. Cradock
, Merchant, to enjoy, to him and his heirs forever.’
The following year the court endeavored to make the north [p. 51]
bounds more definite by providing ‘that the land formerly granted to Mr. Cradock
, Merchant, shall extend a mile into the Country from the River
side in all places.’
The northerly boundary lines above described were not the northerly bounds of Mr. Cradock
's farm as finally agreed upon (see map); it was impractical to make a boundary line to correspond with the bounds as defined by the General Court.
As a consequence, under date of October 7, 1640, the General Court voted that ‘Mr. Tynge
, Mr. Samuel Sheephard
and Goodman Edward Converse
are to set out the bounds between Charlestown
and Mr. Cradock
's farm on the north side of Mistick River.’
It was at this time that the line shown upon the map was definitely settled.
About one hundred years later some question arose between Medford
as to a portion of the boundary line near Mystic pond
, and it was settled by making a new line which is also shown upon the map. In 1687, a committee of Medford
settled the boundary line between the two towns on the easterly side of Medford
's heirs sold the estate in 1652 to Mr. Edward Collins
, by deed dated August 20, 1656, sold to Mr. Richard Russell
about 1,600 acres of land, with the mansion house and other buildings.
This sale comprised all the land of the Cradock Plantation
east of the following described line; viz., ‘On the west, with a White Oak
tree marked R. C., standing on the west side of a brook that runs into that part of the marshland which lyeth on the west of the said Mansion house, and from said marked tree by a direct line continued unto another White Oak
tree, in like manner marked R. C., the said tree standing on the north line between Charlestown
and the said plantation, on the east side of a swamp, the said line being by estimation, north and south, and the brook into which the said brook runs, is the westerly bounds of the said marsh. . . . Excepting from the above, 12 [p. 52]
acres of the meadows lying by Mistick River, next unto the land of the said Edward Collins
Also excepting 30 acres of land called the pine swamp, with 4 1/2 acres of upland sold by the said Collins
to Mr. George Blanchard
The above described line is shown upon the map.
sold May 26, 166, to Mr. Jonathan Wade
, three-fourths part of all the land he purchased of Mr. Collins
, with the buildings thereon, reserving one-fourth part, viz., one-fourth part of the upland and one-fourth part of the meadow lying next to Mr. Blanchard
's farm, and farthest from the dwelling house.
Jonathan Wade, senior
, was of Ipswich
in the year 1635, as in that year he was granted lands in that town.
One of the parcels granted him was a lot of land of six acres, ‘lying next the meadows, by a Creek, commonly called Labour in vayne.’
Is this the origin of the name of Labor in Vain as applied to that bend in Mystic river
at the foot of Foster
The Wades probably brought the name from Ipswich
died at Ispwich in the year 1683 (he never resided in Medford
), and his will may be found in the Essex County
Probate Records, extracts from which are as follows, viz.: ‘I give to my son Jonathan the one half of my farm at Mistick, with the one half of all the stock upon it. Also I give to Nathaniel
the other half of said farm at Mistick and one half of the stock upon it, to be equally divided between them.’
Extract from the Inventory of the Estate of Mr. Jonathan Wade
of Ispwich (from Essex Probate Records).
An apprisement of the Estate at Mistick which Captain Wade enjoyed.
The land and meadow in the improvement of Mr. Nathaniel Wade,
|An old tenement and other buildings||£200.00.00|
|370 Acres of Upland||1400.00.00|
|80 Acres of Salt Marsh||480.00.00|
Buildings, meadows and upland at Mistick, £ 3560.00.00 27. 9. 1683 Thomas Wade, Administrator.
|370 Acres of Upland||£1000.00.00|
|80 Acres of Marsh||480.00.00|
It is evident from the above that Jonathan Wade, senior
, purchased his farm at Mistick for the use of his sons, Jonathan and Nathaniel, and they no doubt came to live in Medford
soon after the purchase, for we find Mr. Jonathan Wade
associated with Mr. Edward Collins
and others in the laying out of a way from Cambridge
through Meadford, in the year 1663.
The division line of the upland between Jonathan and Nathaniel was at or near Gravelly creek
; the division line of the marsh was east of the Marsh islands
, below Labor in Vain point.
April 20, 1677, Mr. Russell
's son and executor deeded the remaining one-fourth part of the land purchased by his father of Mr. Collins
containing about 350 acres, which had thereon ‘one dwelling house and barn
’ to Mr. Peter Tufts
was in possession of the estate prior to the date of his deed under an agreement for its purchase made with Mr. Russell
senior, sometime before that gentleman's decease.
It is upon this tract of land that the old brick house now stands.
The one dwelling house named in this deed stood about ninety rods distant easterly from the brick house above mentioned.
, by deed dated November 26, 1680, sold to his son, Peter Tufts, junior (commonly called Captain Peter
), one-half part of the land he purchased of Mr. Russell
, with housings; the one dwelling house and barn
with twenty acres of land lying next to Mr. Blanchard
's farm was not included in this sale.
Captain Peter Tufts
was one of the most [p. 54]
prominent townsmen of Medford
in his day. He was representative to the General Court in the year 1689, and served the town as a selectman and in other capacities; he was also captain of the military company.
His name first appears on the records of the plantation in the year 1676, he having been chosen one of the selectmen for that year.
He came to reside in Medford
on his father's farm soon after Mr. Peter Tufts, senior
, came into possession of it under the agreement before mentioned.
The first birth recorded in Medford
records (those records that are extant) is that of his daughter Anna
, who was born February 25, 1676.
He no doubt lived in the one dwelling house
, mentioned above, until the new brick house, now called the Cradock house
, was built.
Mr. Peter Tufts, senior
, in his will dated March 1, 1693, bequeathed to his son, Captain Peter
, a portion of his estate, viz.: ‘I give to my son Peter 20 acres of upland lying next his house and the dwelling house standing thereon, he paying his brother John for the barn standing upon said land’ (Mr. John Tufts
lived upon the twenty-acre lot at that time), ‘the line to run from said Peter's line to George Blanchard's line.’
February 9, 1715-6, Captain Peter Tufts
sold to Mr. Peter Eades
, brickmaker, the twenty acres of land with the dwelling thereon, bequeathed to him by his father, Peter Tufts, senior.
This land was bounded easterly partly on Jonathan Blanchard
and partly on Medford line; southerly on the highway leading from said Peter Tufts' to Joshua Blanchard
's; westerly and northerly on said Peter Tufts' own land.
A short time prior to his decease, Captain Peter Tufts
by deed dated March 17, 1721, conveyed to his son, Peter Tufts, junior, of Malden
, forty-five acres of land on the north side of the way to Blanchard
's; this land was bounded easterly in part on Mr. Eades
' twenty-acre lot. ‘Also the east half of my brick house, as it is divided by the fore door and stairway, the stairway to be in common up chamber and garret, and egress and regress for the [p. 55]
east end inhabitants to use the door without doors that leads into the cellar, and one-half of the cellar room and that at the easterly end of it. But my son Peter, his heirs and assigns shall not pass through the north room into the cellar, but shall make a way under the stairs into the cellar for their use.’
also conveyed to his son the northerly half of the barn with land for a cowyard (the barn stood on the south of the way nearly opposite the dwelling house). From the above it will be seen that ‘the door without doors that leads into the cellar’ was at the west end of the house; the door that leads into the cellar from the outside at the present day is at the east end of the house.
The passageway into the cellar through the north room, the use of which was forbidden to ‘my son Peter,’ was probably by means of a trapdoor in the floor, a method of reaching the cellar much in use in those days.
This westerly outside entrance to the cellar is spoken of as late as the year 1750, when the estate of Mr. Ebenezer Cutter
was divided among his heirs.
at his decease owned the brick house.
The west end of the house was set off to his widow, and the easterly end to his eldest son, and it was provided that ‘the eldest son shall have the liberty of putting in casks at the outer cellar door in the widow's part of the house and taking them out as he may have occasion.’
The dwelling house and twenty acres of land sold by Captain Peter Tufts
to Mr. Peter Eades
was deeded July 14, 1721, by Mr. Eades
to Peter Tufts, junior (son of Captain Peter
), and on the first day of April, 1728, Peter Tufts, junior, sold to Mr. Edward Oakes
four acres and thirteen poles of land with an old house upon it
, this is the same house with a portion of the land bequeathed by Peter Tufts, senior, to his son, Captain Peter Tufts
The estate was described as being near to the said Edward Oakes
' now dwelling house upon the highway leading from Medford
's farm, bounded westerly and northerly on the said Peter Tufts
' land; easterly [p. 56]
upon the said Edward Oakes
' land; southerly upon the way to Blanchard
's. Mr. Edward Oakes
, at the time of this purchase, resided in Malden
adjoining the Medford
line upon land purchased of Mr. Jonathan Blanchard
In 1753, when Edward Oakes
died (he then resided in Medford
), the inventory of his estate mentioned a mansion house and an old house
When the estate was divided, the westerly half of the mansion house was set off to his widow, and the easterly half to his son, Samuel.
, another son, received twelve and one-half acres of land with the old house
thereon; this land was bounded easterly upon the widow's thirds.
The mansion house of Mr. Edward Oakes
is no doubt the old house now standing on Riverside avenue on land of the New England
Brick Company, and was probably built by Mr. Oakes
subsequent to the year 1728.
The old house set off to Edward Oakes, junior
, was situated between the brick house of Captain Peter Tufts
and the mansion house of Mr. Edward Oakes
, very near to said mansion house, and it was the one dwelling house
that stood upon the land when purchased by Mr. Peter Tufts, senior
All traces of this house have long since disappeared, and even the land on which it stood has been manufactured into bricks.
The so-called Cradock House was, without doubt, built by Mr. Peter Tufts, senior
, between the years 1677 and 1680, and should be called the Peter Tufts House
This house passed through the ownership of many persons down to the present day; it is now in the possession of Gen. S. C. Lawrence
The Jonathan Tufts house.
In 1691, Mr. Peter Tufts, senior
, sold to his son, Mr. Jonathan Tufts
(brother of Captain Peter
), thirty-nine acres of land, with dwelling house, barn and other buildings.
This land is described as beginning at the northerly corner thereof at a point where the boundary lines of Charlestown
unite, and was bounded northwesterly on the country road from Meadford [p. 57]
, west on land of Peter Tufts, junior, southeast on land of Peter Tufts, senior.
The greater part of this thirty-nine acres of land is contained in that part of Medford territory
set off to Malden
in the year 1877, and the dwelling house (the exact location of which is unknown) probably stood not far from where the Catholic church is now located.
The Major Nathaniel Wade house.
The brick house mentioned by Mr. Charles Brooks
in his History of Medford
as standing about five hundred feet north of Ship street and about the same distance west of Park street, opposite Mr. Magoun
's shipyard, and which he says was taken down many years ago by that gentleman, really stood about fifty feet each way from the above-named streets.
It was the homestead of Major Nathaniel Wade
, son of Jonathan Wade, senior
married, October 31, 1672, Mercy Bradstreet
, and died November 28, 1707.
He was one of Medford
's foremost townsmen, also captain of the military company and major of the Lower Middlesex Regiment
The first record in Medford
's book of records says, ‘The first Monday of February in the year of our Lord
, 1674, At a meeting of the Inhabitants of Meadford, Mr. Nathaniel Wade
was chosen Constable for the ensuing year.’
He built this house after he came into the possession of his estate under his father's will.
In the settlement of his estate his widow received the house as her dower, and after her death, October 15, 1715, it came into the possession of her son, Samuel Wade
sold to Mr. William Richardson
, and Mr. Richardson
sold to Mr. Thomas Oakes
. Ship street was known for many years as the way from Thomas Oakes
' to Blanchard
The westerly boundary of Mr. Oakes
' farm was at Cross street. Prior to the laying out of Cross street, the way from Meadford to Blanchard
's led across the Salem
street common to the landing, known as ‘Noman's-friend’ landing, which is on the river at the [p. 58]
southerly end of Cross street. In the year 1710 there was a parcel of land sold that included the site of the common, and the seller ‘reserved the liberty of a highway through said land, from the Country road near to a place called Gravelly Bridge, to Widow Mercy Wade
This house, after passing through the ownership of many different persons, finally came into the possession of Mr. Thatcher Magoun, senior
, and Mr. George B. Lapham
, Mr. Magoun
owning the easterly half and Mr. Lapham
the westerly half.
The land upon which this house stood was used by Mr. Magoun
for the preparation of materials that entered into the construction of his ships.
The Cradock house.
The Cradock farm
house and other buildings connected therewith were located in and about what is now known as Medford square. On an undated map, supposed to have been made about the year 1633 (see Med-ford Historical Register
I, No. 4, Page 121), the way from Mistick ford to Salem
is indicated by two dotted parallel lines, and the farm house of Mr. Cradock
is located between the way and the river.
The word Meadford
appears in close proximity to the house; and on the margin, said to be in the handwriting of Governor Winthrop
, are the words, ‘Meadford, Mr. Cradock
's ferme house.’
We are fortunate in having another map dated October, 1637, representing Governor Winthrop
's Ten Hills farm (see Medford Historical Register, Vol.
I, No. 4, Page 123), showing the Cradock farm
house (and other buildings) as it is located upon the first named map. Mistick bridge is also shown near the farm house.
Another landmark to be noted is that the northwest corner of the Ten Hills farm
is located exactly at the southeast corner of the bridge; this we know to be correct.
The Cradock House
was called Meadford, Meadford House and Mistick House.
It was the residence of Mr. Cradock
All the business of the [p. 59]
plantation was transacted here.
It was, without doubt, the meeting house and the tavern.
When Major Jonathan Wade
's estate was divided, the great barn was spoken of in the division, and it was situated upon that lot of land now owned and occupied by D. W. Lawrence
, on the south side of Salem street. Under date of March 5, 1722-3, Mr. Josiah Waters
sold to Captain John Corney
, a dwelling house and land.
‘The Homestead being at a place where the Great Barn formerly stood, bounded North upon the Country road to Malden
108 feet. West and South upon land of the said Corney
108 feet. East upon other land of the said Corney
Another deed of this same lot of land described it as being bounded ‘southwest and south upon the Barnyard;’ still another deed further describes the location of the barn as follows: ‘on the above said Gerrish
's from the Country road down toward the marsh 5 Rods 7 feet, to a stake, and from said stake to the south corner of the Barn about 34 feet.’
lot above mentioned is a part of Mr. Lawrence
's estate, and the location of the barn was opposite the location of the Mystic Church
. Salem street was not as wide then as now, from the testimony of old papers; its width about the year 1700 was not much in excess of two rods.
The Great Barn
was probably one hundred or more feet in length, and it had a lean — to connected therewith.
It was taken down about the years 1722-23, and the northerly end must have stood about ten feet within the limits of the highway at that time (1722-23). This location of the Great Barn agrees with that upon the Ten Hills farm
plan, and is, without doubt, the old Cradock
Mr. Edward Collins
, and also the Wade
family, no doubt lived in the old Cradock
The brick house now standing on the hill back of the Savings Bank building was built by Major Jonathan Wade
after he came into possession of his estate under his father's will.
In the year 1692-93, Mrs. Elizabeth Wade
, widow of Major Wade
, petitioned the Court
of General Sessions
of the Peace for [p. 60]
an abatement of the taxes assessed upon the Wade
estate by the selectmen of Meadford, claiming that by reason of sickness and also by reason of his (Major Wade
's) great charges in building, etc., the personal estate was very much reduced.
This would seem to indicate that the great charges were incurred in building the brick house.
All of these old buildings were no doubt built of wood.
Fine brick buildings such as the Wade
and Tufts houses were not built in the early days of the settlement; the necessary materials were not at hand for such purposes.
In 1631, Governor Winthrop
built himself a house of stone on Winter Hill
, and owing to the lack of lime to make mortar the workmen were obliged to use clay to lay up the walls, and during an easterly storm the clay was washed out of the joints of the stonework and the walls fell down.
It will be remembered that the chimney of the Wilson house
was built of brick, laid up with clay.
What more fitting location could Mr. Cradock
's agent have selected than the one shown on the maps above mentioned, close to the river and the ford, on the direct route from Salem
In 1637-8, his agent built a bridge across Mistick river near his residence, as his business in that vicinity required better facilities than could be secured at the ford, where a tidal flow of from nine to twelve feet of water occurred twice in twenty-four hours, and where the steep banks of the river made the passage of teams, with even ordinary loads, quite a difficult matter.
Mr. Charles Brooks
in his History of Medford
, says, ‘There could have been no motive for his building such a bridge, at such a time and at his own expense, unless his men and business were in the neighborhood.’
The Major Jonathan Wade houses.
In 1689, when Major Jonathan Wade
died, and his estate was divided among his heirs, there were but two dwelling houses spoken of in the division, viz.: the brick house on Brooks lane and the house by Marble brook
. [p. 61]
The brick house, as has been before stated, was built by Major Jonathan Wade
, and certain parts of it were set off to Major Wade
's widow; to his son, Dudley Wade
, and to his daughters, Prudence Swan
and Elizabeth Wade
The house by Marble brook
was set off to his daughter, Katherine Wyer
This house stood where the Puffer house
The four houses West of Marble brook.
In 1660, when Messrs. Thomas Brooks
and Timothy Wheeler
purchased of Mr. Edward Collins
the westerly portion of the Cradock farm
, consisting of four hundred acres of land, there was but one house mentioned in the deed, and that house stood on the south side of the way to the Weares, directly opposite the Woburn
road (Grove street). It was occupied at the time of the purchase by one Golden Moore
It was afterwards occupied by members of the Brooks
family until the year 1779, when it was taken down.
' History of Medford
In 1675, when Mr. Edward Collins
sold five hundred acres of land situated between Messrs. Brooks
's on the west, and land of Mr. Jonathan Wade
on the east, to Mr. Caleb Hubbart
, who subsequently sold to Mr. John Hall
and his associates, three houses only were spoken of as standing on the land.
One of these houses was then occupied by Mr. Thomas Willis
, and it stood near the junction of Arlington and Canal streets, probably on the triangular lot of Mr. Lincoln
. Mr. Willis
had set off to him as a part of his share in the division of the estate sixteen acres of land, with the dwelling house formerly in the possession of Mr. Thomas Eames
Within the limits of this sixteen acres were two acres of clayland belonging to Daniel Markham
, also a common landing place and claypits.
This sixteen-acre lot was situated on Mistick river, and was bounded easterly on the land of Mr. John Hall
's brook, [p. 62]
so called, being the dividing line, and it extended southwesterly along the river about eighty rods.
At that point were situated the common landing place and claypits.
The common highway leading to this landing and to these claypits was what is now Canal street. Daniel Markham
's sixty acres of land (afterwards that of Stephen and John Francis
) were situated in the northwest corner of the farm, with a dwelling house thereon, occupied by himself.
This house stood back from Woburn street on land recently purchased by the city of Medford
for an addition to Oak Grove Cemetery, and was reached by a way through land of Mr. John Hall
. Mr. John Hall
's share in the division consisted of one hundred ninety-eight and one-half acres of land near the middle of the farm, ‘the old dwelling house of Mr. Collins
being contained upon it.’
It was then occupied by Mr. Thomas Shepard
The westerly part of the house was set off to Mr. Hall
, and the easterly part to Mr. Stephen Willis
sold his part of the house in 1683 to Mr. Hall
.) This house stood on the north side of the road (High street), and the easterly line of Allston street passes through its location, one-quarter part of the location of the house being within the limits of the street, and the remaining three-quarters in the lot on the easterly side of said street.
On the map is shown a building at the Weares, copied from an old map, made as early as the year 1638.
Also the Menotomy Corn Mills
, built about the year 1656, which stood in the river on the Charlestown
side (now Arlington
). The old road from Cambridge
ran over the milldam.
In addition to the list of old houses above mentioned, there are a few that were built prior to the year 1700 that are worthy of mention.
All of these were situated west of Marble brook
, for in that part of the plantation most of the new houses appear to have been erected during that period.
This is not submitted as a complete list; only such will be named as can be approximately [p. 63]
For one hundred and fifty years subsequent to the year 1700 the growth of Medford
was east of the above-named brook.
The houses of John Whitmore, senior
, and of John Whitmore, junior
, adjoined, and stood on the north side of High street, near where Usher
's block now stands.
The house of Francis Whitmore
stood where the brick house on Canal street now stands.
It was taken down by the town of Medford
, and the present brick house built while the premises were improved by the town as a Poor Farm
The house of Stephen Willis, senior
, stood on the north side of High street, near Warren street.
The house of Nathaniel Hall (son of John Hall, senior) stood where the house of the superintendent of Oak Grove Cemetery now stands on Woburn street.
The house of John Hall, junior, stood near where the house formerly occupied by the late Albert Smith
now stands on Woburn street.
The house of Percival Hall (son of John Hall) stood near where the house of Mr. W. C. Craig
stands on the easterly side of Woburn street. His barn stood across the street opposite the house.
Stephen and Thomas Hall received the old house of their father, John Hall, senior, as a part of their share of his estate.
Stephen received the easterly half and Thomas
the westerly half.
Stephen built himself a new house just east of the old house.
In later years it was known as the Huffmaster House
' new house stood just west of Allston street.
In 1684, Mr. Stephen Willis
sold to Mr. John Bradshaw
ten acres of land, including what is now known as Rock Hill
The old house on the corner of Hastings lane and High street was probably built by Mr. Bradshaw
prior to the year 1700.
It is a very old house.
In 1685, Mr. John Whitmore
sold to Mr. Bradshaw
three-fourths of an acre of land, ‘the land being that upon which his dwelling house stands.’
This land was [p. 64]
bounded east upon the country road; north and south on Thomas Willis
This house stood on the westerly side of Woburn street, near the northerly corner of the ‘Lucy Ann Brooks
There was an old house that stood on the corner of High and Grove streets, on land formerly of Captain Timothy Wheeler
, and it was sold by his grandson, Mr. Ebenezer Prout
, to Messrs. John
and Stephen Francis
It subsequently became a part of the Brooks
This estate contained sixty acres of land, and was bounded westerly, on Mistick Pond; southerly, on the way to the Weares; easterly, on the road to Woburn
, and northerly, on a ditch and hedge.
The deed to the Messrs.
Francis was dated March 2, 1692.
Mr. Thomas Willis
built a house on the northerly side of the way to Woburn
, at the foot of the hill known as ‘Marm Simonds' Hill.’
It is supposed to have been built prior to the year 1690, and was used as a tavern.
There were many more old houses that were built about the year 1700, but time and space forbid their mention.
Only one more will be herein spoken of, viz.: The Ram Head House
, that stood upon that forty acres of land formerly known as Ram Head
This land was situated on Ram Head lane (now Rural avenue), but it must not be confounded with that upon which the observatory stands.
The latter is the modern Ram Head
; the former, the ancient and original Ram Head