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[p. 80] first declined, whether from lack of practice or because of ministerial dignity is unknown; but on being much urged, accepted the challenge. Having noticed the weak points of his opponent, he soon threw him, but was challenged to a second trial, with the remark that he ‘could not do it again.’ He did so, however, and with much mortification at his defeat the challenger left the ground.

He had no occasion to refund any of his settlement money, as his ministry covered a period of thirty years. He served the town eight years in the General Court and one as selectman.

A century ago there were slaves in Northfield and Deacon Dutton had a native African who was tattooed on both cheeks before his capture—a witty and faithful servant. The Sabbath after his death the deacon sent up to the desk the usual request for prayers for the bereaved, and Mr. Mason's pathetic allusions to the faithful old slave were long remembered.

With such an one in the old Medford schoolhouse as master, it is safe to conclude that the Medford boys of 1796 ‘toed the mark’ as well as studied the three Rs.

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