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The west side was for the use of the grammar school, which occupied the second story, and the east side for the use of the high school, which occupied the third story. A board fence six feet in height separated the school yard from the street. An incident occurred while Mr. Hathaway taught in the old schoolhouse that is worth relating. One of the party slogans in use during the Presidential campaign of the year 1844 was ‘No Protection.’ At that time some of the larger boys of the high school were inclined to annoy the smaller boys of the grammar school. On one occasion Mr. Hathaway interfered to protect his pupils, and informed the high school boys that in future he proposed to protect his pupils from their annoyances. The next morning there appeared over the door of the grammar school the words ‘No Protection,’ written in large letters with white chalk. That same day, at recess, one of the high school boys paraded in front of the door of the grammar school shouting ‘No Protection,’ and annoying the grammar school boys. While so engaged Mr. Hathaway sprang from the doorway of his school-room and seized the boy by the collar, and dragged him into his school-room porch and gave him a severe lecture upon his conduct. Whatever other influences were brought to bear upon the case are not known, but there was no more trouble, and Mr. Hathaway proved to the satisfaction of everybody concerned that he was both able and willing to protect his pupils.

After resigning as teacher of the West Grammar School Mr. Hathaway opened a private English and Classical School and fitted young men of his school for college. Amherst, Dartmouth, Harvard, Tufts and Williams Colleges all received students from his school. His school was first located in the second story of the Medford Branch Railway building on Main street, and was afterwards transferred to a double house on the east side of Ashland street. About the year 1850 he built a schoolhouse on the north side of Chestnut street. This house was a story and a half in height, with two entrances;

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