in his autobiography written in 1884, attributes to the influence of his grandparents whatever of religious characteristics he possessed.
He was “ambitious to study and earn money” and was careful of his earnings made in various ways.
“Sticking cards” was one of these.
This would be a lost art to the youth of to-day, who know more of playing cards than of those more useful articles used in the textile industries of many New England
homes of that time.
This was the placing of many crooked bits of wire in a backing of perforated leather by slow process of manual labor, and which a few years later was superseded by machine work in his native town.
But this was a winter work.
Like other New England
farmers, Amos Warren
believed in the gospel of hard work, and so six months of the year William Wilkins
became an “enthusiastic young farmer,” and in the winter months attended the town school, primary and grammar he styles them.
As there was no school then in the West End
, he was a “Fagender” at the old one near the meeting-house.
He says “I never identified myself with the Medford
fighting-boys who were hostile to the Charlestown
boys on the frozen Middlesex canal
, and had many hard fights.”
The passage of the boats through the lock and the alewife fishing on the river near by were more to his taste.
, afterward Dr., Furness
and Luther Angier
were his teachers in the town school.
The latter recommended him, when twelve years old, to Medford Academy, as he styles Mr. John Angier
's school, and for a time he was in Mr. Angier
While attending the town school he walked to Charlestown bridge, and alone, to see Lafayette
and the great procession to the corner-stone laying at Bunker Hill
, which was to him a most notable occasion.
While at the academy he paid for his tuition by work in and about the place.
During his stay in Medford
, his grandsire Warren
had as tenants in his house a Mr. Reed
He mentions enjoying much the society of this family and their