the upper end, and their manufacture has in the last few decades become a lost art for which the reliable
builders of the present day sigh in vain.
While the frame was fastened with wooden pins, the boards, clapboards and shingles were secured with nails, and here was another example of co-operative industry and a home market.
All the nails were hand made and in many cases home made, even the children assisting in beating out on a little anvil each single nail from an iron rod of suitable size.
Every nail was placed where it would do the most service, and none wasted.
Next in order in the ‘couenant’ was ‘the walls [to be] bricked.’
was abundant in Medford
, and bricks but lightly burned were packed into the spaces between the joists and timbers of the framework, being laid in clay instead of mortar of lime and sand.
Such construction may be found in the oldest houses of Medford
, and adds much to their warmth and protection against the spread of fire.
The ‘Couenant’ called for ‘Dors & windows & Glafs,’ and ‘to lay a lower flore.’
This required more skilled workmen—they were the joiners, who made the window-frames and sashes.
Of ‘Dors’ there must have been at least two, and probably both in the external wall, with some attempt at ornament in their finish and makeup, while the ‘flore’ was made of pine from the primeval forest, and well seasoned, as it had need to be, for the boards were wide, as were those that sealed the sides of the room up to the window-sills.
The town, on the 4th of November, 1695, voted to have a pulpit and deacons' seat made, as well as ‘the body of seats,’ and have the walls ‘plaistered with lime,’ thus increasing the outlay to eighty pounds. It was tedious work sawing
the great logs into lumber, so the laths were split in narrow and thin strips varying in width and thickness, and nailed on the joists, concealing the bricks already laid.
Lime was made by burning oyster shells, and hair to mix with it may have come from