previous next
[p. 26] many years it was a ‘scattered village,’ having only a few over thirty tax payers on real estate when the first steps were taken toward erecting a meeting-house.

It may be appropriate here to note that the structure was just what its name implied—a house for the town's people to meet in, not only for worship, but for the transaction of the town's business, which was done with a strict attention to the minutest details.

Of the tax payers above mentioned but a part were church members. The term church was used by the fathers to designate the associated body of worshipers, and not the house they assembled in. Few roads there were in 1690, for few were needed. From Charlestown, through Mistick, or Meadford, came Robert Sedgwick, Edward Johnson, and four others through the ‘farm’ of Zachariah Symmes, the minister of the Charlestown Church, to explore the territory to the north, located as Charlestown Village. The way they took was over the rocky hill, where had dwelt the Indian king Nanepashemit, and their route came to be known as the ‘Oborn rode.’

At the top of the hill another road divides from this, ‘the way to the Weare.’ It is appropriately called High street, and the hill is still known as ‘Marm Simonds'.’

The order of the General Court in 1635 ‘that hereafter no dwelling-house shall be built above half a mile from the meeting-house in any plantation without leave from the court,’ was of none effect in Meadford. There was no meeting-house to measure from, and Meadford's dwellings were scattered from Charlestown to Menotomy, along a road little better than a cow-path, and whose course through the forest was marked by blazing the trees at intervals on either side.

It is the purpose of the writer to present in these lines some memorial of the house our fathers assembled in, and if possible bring to the thought and comprehension of the people of the present day something of their efforts in that time that seems so far away to us. The town, by

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Zachariah Symmes (1)
Simonds (1)
Robert Sedgwick (1)
Edward Johnson (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1690 AD (1)
1635 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: