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Medford Historical Society Papers, Volume 1., The Medford blacksmith of 1775. (search)
ht, as he pursued his calling at the forge. The old shop, like the village tavern, had long been the rendezvous of the loungers of the neighborhood, and here many of the patriots gathered to discuss the troubled affairs of the country. But a little farther up the street stood the Royall House, where were wont to gather the Tories and adherents of the King. It was a time when neighbor was to be arrayed against neighbor. For several days prior to June 16, 1775, farmers from Woburn, Billerica, Burlington, and Bedford had passed through Medford over the turnpike on their way to Charlestown neck, where they congregated at the old tavern located where Sullivan's Square Park now stands. As they passed the smithy many stopped to replace a shoe lost by their horse on the way thither. This increased patronage obliged Harry Bond to continue his work late into the night, so that it afforded a good excuse for the gathering of so many citizens at the shop where was being discussed in
le, and it is interesting to compare his figures with those of Mr. Thompson. As calculated by the latter, the ascent from Medford bridge to the Concord river at Billerica was found to be 68 1/2 ft.; the actual difference in level, as found by Weston, was 104 ft. By Thompson's survey there was a further ascent of 16 1/2 ft. to the end. Some of the land was never paid for, as the owners refused to accept the sum awarded. The compensation ranged from about $150 an acre in Medford to $25 in Billerica. The numerous conveyances are all in Sullivan's handwriting. Labor was not easily procured, probably from the scarcity of laborers, as the wages paid, averagbringing great business ability and unquenchable zeal to this task, the perishable wooden locks were gradually replaced with stone, a new stone dam was built at Billerica, and the service brought to a high state of efficiency. The new dam was the occasion of a lawsuit brought by the proprietors of Sudbury meadows, claiming damage