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Committees appointed for the school outside the Neck, together with the annual appropriations.

May 5, 1736, William Symmes, Joseph Frost, William Rand, £ 25.

May, 1837, William Symmes, Joseph Frost, Joseph Kent, £ 30.

May 15, 1738, William Rand, Samuel Hutchinson, Henry Gardner, £ 30.

May 14, 1739, Joseph Kent, Samuel Hutchinson, Henry Gardner, £ 30.

May 13, 1740, Captain Caleb Brooks, James Peirce, James Tufts, £ 40.

May 11, 1741, Joseph Kent, Captain Caleb Brooks, James Tufts, £ 40.

May 10, 1742, and May 10, 1743, the same committee.

May 8, 1744, Captain Caleb Brooks, Joseph Kent, Nathaniel Francis, £ 50.

May 13, 1745, the same committee.

May 19, 1746, Joseph Kent, Nathaniel Francis, John Bradshaw, £ 50.

May 11, 1747, Peter Tufts, Philip Cartwrite (Carteret), John Bradshaw, £ 60.

May 6, 1748, Nathaniel Lamson, Joseph Kent, John Bradshaw, Nathaniel Francis, and Henry Gardner, £ 80.

May 15, 1749, the same committee, with Mr. Kent, chairman, £ 100.

May, 1750, Nathaniel Lamson, Nathaniel Francis, Henry Gardner, John Skinner, Samuel Rand, £ 250, or £ 33. 6. 8. lawful


May 20, 1751, Peter Tufts, Henry Gardner, Benjamin Parker, Seth Reed, Joseph Phipps, £ 200. O. T.

May 12, 1752, Samuel Bowman, Henry Gardner, Seth Reed, Benjamin Parker, Joseph Phipps, Samuel Kent, £ 200, or £ 26. 13. 4. lawful money,

May 14, 1753, Benjamin Parker, Seth Reed, Samuel Kent, Joseph Phipps, £ 240.

We close the list at this point, as by the next May the town of Medford had taken on a more definite form, and Charlestown, [17] in consequence, suffered a considerable diminution in territory.

This indefinitely designated locality ‘beyond the Neck,’ or ‘outside the peninsula,’ consisting, we see, of distinct communities separated by wide stretches of unsettled or sparsely settled territory, to all appearances, after the vote of May, 1736, amicably portioned out the sums we have quoted above. That each district had a school of its own is not certain, but we are inclined to think it did have one. As yet, there is no mention of schoolhouses, and, although they may have been built by private subscription—little cheap affairs—it is more probable that, for some years, at least, the benefits of education were dispensed in private rooms hired for that purpose. From a study of conditions in some of the neighboring towns, we learn that it was customary, at this period of our history, for the poorer and more sparsely—settled districts to have an itinerant schoolmaster, who devoted himself for a stated period—say a month or six weeks—to one section of the town, and so on until all had been similarly served. The invariable wording of the vote during these first years is for the ‘school,’ not ‘schools,’ outside the Neck, and for the schoolmaster,—singular, not plural. Now it is very certain this school was not held in some central locality, accessible to all. Neither is it supposable that the young people of Milk Row, for instance, traveled to Medford, or those from Medford to Milk Row. The only way left was for the schoolmaster to circulate about, to time his peregrinations so as to suit the convenience of his constituents. Still another way has been suggested, namely, that, after receiving its just share of the appropriation, each section continued its school for the rest of the year at its own expense.

Concerning the teachers of these outlying districts, the records are provokingly silent. We are indebted to them for one name, however, that of Cotton Tufts, who may have taught on Somerville soil, but it is more probable that his labors were confined to the Medford precinct. This is the record:—

‘June 12, 1751, voted to pay Mr. Cotton Tuffts, 76£, old tenor, in full, as schoolmaster and employed by Mr. John Skinner, deceased, one of the committee to regulate the school without the neck.’ [18]

This was, doubtless, the son of Dr. Simon Tufts, the first physician of Medford. Cotton Tufts was born May 3, 1734, and graduated from Harvard College in 1749. Our record shows that he was master of the ferule at the early age of seventeen. Later he married a Miss Smith, sister, it is said, of President John Adams' wife, and resided in Weymouth. He was president of the Massachusetts Medical Association about 1776. His funeral sermon, preached by the Rev. Jacob Norton, is still extant. Wyman, against the name of Joseph Russell (Walter3, Joseph2, William1), born August 25, 1703, says that he kept school about 1724. As the place is not designated, we may not be justified in including him among Charlestown teachers. He may have taught in Menotomy (West Cambridge), where the family lived. But the fact that the historian thus alludes to him would seem to imply that he taught on this side of the line. If not a pedagogue of Charlestown himself, he became the progenitor of a line of teachers through his grandson, Philemon R. Russell, of whom we hope to speak later on.

The little cemetery on Phipps street has preserved from oblivion one other name, that of Mistress Rebeckah Anderson, the only one of the worthy ‘dames’ of that early period whose name has come down to us. The headstone reads:—

Here Lyes Buried

ye Body of Mrs.
Rebeckah Anderson (Late School-Mistress in

this Town) who Died
March 4th, Anno Dom. 1743-4 in the 49th
Year of Her Age.
Close by is the grave of her sister, Mrs. Elizabeth Phillips, the famous midwife, who held her commission from the bishop of London. The name of Rebeckah Anderson, who led the van, and that, too, so far in advance of the great army of female teachers, who since her time have battled faithfully for the cause, ought to be treasured by her sisters of to-day. We give this sentiment: As their number never faileth, so may her grave, hereafter, never lack a flower or a sprig of green for memory's sake. [19]

We cannot close this chapter without referring to the name of Isaac Royal, Esq., whose generous benefactions, especially to the outlying schools of Charlestown, entitle him to a place in this history. He was one of the most influential and distinguished citizens of the town, and, as is well known, dwelt in that section which afterwards became Medford. Her father, Isaac Royal, Sr., in 1732, purchased of the heirs of Governor Usher an estate of about 500 acres, the consideration being £ 10,350. The house which is still standing, was enlarged and beautified, and became one of the most pretentious and elegant mansions of the day within the suburbs of Boston. Here the father died, 7 June, 1739, and his widow, ‘dame Elizabeth,’ also, 21 April, 1747. Isaac Royall, Jr., born in the West Indies about 1719, thus became the heir of a large and productive estate at the early age of twenty. It is written of him that he delighted to display his riches, and that he had political aspirations, which were partly gratified. But, whatever his motive, he offers an example of generous and interested citizenship which did not find an equal in his day and generation. Personal gleanings from the records give us the following facts:—

In town meeting, May 10, 1743, the thanks of the town were voted to Isaac Royall for his gift of £ 100, to be used as the town sees fit. The same year he paid out on the highway £ 45. 13. 0., which sum was offered as a gift to the town, and accepted with thanks.

May 8, 1744, Isaac Royall offered his last year's salary as Representative, with the understanding that the town was to expend it upon the poor.

May 13, 1745, he offered £ 30 for the poor within the Neck, and £ 80 for the use of the school without the Neck. Frothingham's History, under date of this year, wrongly states that the gift of £ 80 was to the school at the Neck. There was no school at the Neck at this time.

May 19, 1746, Mr. Royall offers £ 30 for the use of the school without the Neck, in addition to what the town raises for that purpose, and £ 30 for supporting highways between Winter Hill and Mistick bridge. Mr. Royall was one of the selectmen for [20] 1746, and for several years thereafter. May 11, 1747, he returns to the town his pay as Representative the year before. May 16, 1748, of his salary (£ 120 as Representative), he gives £ 40 to the poor within the Neck and £ 80 for the use of the school without the Neck. The next May meeting he gives his year's salary for whatever use the town desires. Again, he donates one-half of his last year's salary to the school without the Neck, and one-half to the school within the Neck. In 1752 Mr. Royal is again elected to the General Court, ‘but cannot serve the Town as he is made one of the Governor's Councillors,’ a position which he held for twenty-three years in succession, or until 1774. For his ability he was awarded other high offices, as that of Justice of the Peace and Quorum. He was also a member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, and in 1761 became a brigadier-general, ‘the first of that title among Americans.’ After 1753, when he became a citizen of Medford, his name, of course, drops from our records. It is not without a feeling of sadness that we contemplate the latter part of his career, which was spent in exile, far from the land he had served long and honorably, and which, so far as we can learn, he ever regarded with affection. He died October, 1781, in England.

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