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[p. 58] son to instruct the prisoners then at Castle William which were— 16 in number—

That your petitioner lately constructed a wire mill for drawing steel wire for the making of fish hooks and that himself drew the first wire of that kind that ever was drawn in this state and that he instructed in the method of drawing that and all other kinds of wire from the bigness of half an inch down to the size of a hair.

That your petitioner gave encouragement and (for the benefit of his country) and brought over with him from Ireland in June last a man and his wife with a curious machine whereon the woman can spin fifteen pounds cotton in one day. That the man was the superintendent of a large Cotton Manufactury that had stopped working and that they were Reccommended by a number of Gentlemen of the first character in the City of Londonderry.

That your petitioner by reason of his attention to matters of Original inventions and by reason of his many losses and misfortunes humbly begs leave to say to your Honors that he is yet a Poor Man.

This petition, written shortly after some of the events recited, received favorable action, and a grant was finally made, 26 January, 1796, of lands in the eastern parts, in the district of Maine, amounting to one thousand acres.

If the claims recited had not been true, parties interested were still alive, and could have refuted the statements in his petition.

The delay in passing the resolve can be readily explained by the necessary absence of the petitioner in Ireland, where he was bridge building.

The committee appointed in 1790 reported favorably, and that he should have one thousand acres in township No. 7, bordering on Gouldsborough, Maine. This land, shortly after the grant, was disposed of by him to one of the Amory family of Boston.

William Priest was an English musician who came to Boston to play at the Haymarket Theatre in 1796, and kept a journal, which he published in 1802. He mentions being introduced to Cox, the celebrated bridge builder:

Cox told him he constructed his bridges of wood and always endeavoured to give as little resistance to the water as possible the supports being numerous but slender with intervals between.

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