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[p. 20]

After the usual amount of self-deprecation common to public speakers, Mr. Usher proceeded with a review of the life and public service of Governor Brooks, emphasizing his many excellent traits of character and urging the auditors to emulate them. The episode in his military career, related elsewhere in this issue of the Register, was alluded to, as also his patriotic stand against the disaffected officers at Newburg. In the latter part of his address he mentioned various appliances that had been crudely tried, with partial success, for subduing fire. These have since materialized in the modern chemical engine.

Mr. Usher was then in his thirty-sixth year, and no doubt was at his best, as flashes of wit appear at intervals in the address. The Town Hall where he spoke was not our recently much-maligned and ‘still doing business at the old stand’ edifice, neither was it the first Town Hall of Medford, but the second and larger building, built ten years before. It replaced the one burnt in 1839, and the good judgment (regardless of civic pride) of the Medford people followed the old design of a leading architect of Boston, who planned the former structure. A few months after this anniversary occasion it fell a prey to the devouring flames, but no mention thereof appears in the records of the company.

It appears that despite the excellent lessons of discipline and obedience to authority drawn by Mr. Usher from the life of Governor Brooks, a year had not elapsed when there was a ‘walk out’ of the company, which then formed the ‘Ex-Brooks Company,’ and hired a room to meet in for a time.

On September 7, 1852, the record shows a reinstatement of the company by the engineers. Things moved smoothly once more until March 14, 1858, when at a fire at the ‘Plains’ a disagreement arose, and the company was disbanded by the engineers. Then the ‘Ex-Brooks Association’ was formed, a constitution adopted, officers elected and a few meetings held, the records ending with

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