daughter of John Chipman
and Elizabeth (Brown
, the latter's sister, Abigail Brown
, being the wife of Rev. Edward Brooks
At that time our town was a small one, with a population of eleven hundred.
There were not many houses on the Woburn
road (our present High street) between the market place and Meeting-house
Most of them had wide spaces of land around and between them, with an open view across the river.
Save for a few buildings close to the market place on the east, there were still fewer houses along the Salem
Ship building had not begun; there was no local stage; only one long-distance one passed through the place; there was no town house; but one meeting-house, and one schoolhouse.
Sea captains and Boston
merchants found it a good residential place for the summer.
Several who came for a short time became permanent residents.
was a thriving town, a well-known port with a large East India
commerce; a place of many large and beautiful colonial houses, and of such business activity that perhaps the quiet of our town, and its nearness to Boston
, drew this merchant and his family here for a few weeks.
It was said of Medford
as late as 1853, “It was a quiet, restful place, withal, excepting in the ship-yards.”
Possibly the strongest reason that drew them was to be near their daughter Lucia, twelve years old, who was a pupil at Mrs. Susanna Rowson
's celebrated private school.
If class prophecies were then in order, and it had been foretold that Lucia Gray
would have a daughter who would live beyond a century's mark, and a granddaughter who would be well known in the world of art and letters, it might have seemed like a wild flight of fancy, but it would have run parallel with the true course of events.
A daughter of this little Medford
school girl married Francis Alexander
, a native of Connecticut
He was an artist, who settled first in Boston
, then in Florence, Italy
was on the stage line called the upper route to Exeter