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Medford Historical Society Papers, Volume 12., A pioneer railroad and how it was built. (search)
e following season, while the steamboat Eagle was making her daily trips from Boston to Hingham, the same steam canal-boat, Merrimack, made trips from Boston to Chelmsford, and thence up the Merrimack river to Concord, N. H. While this particular attempt was not continued as a permanent arrangement, as was then hoped it would be bridge to Boston, while at the northern end a fourpence ha'penny was charged for two miles when the fare was not thrown in. The canal's northern end was in Chelmsford, now known as Middlesex Village and part of the city of Lowell. The canal's first cost was a half-million, and this had been supplemented by continual heavy s, and twenty locks had to be passed through, it was an all day journey from Lowell to Boston. Besides Lowell was nearly two miles distant from the terminal at Chelmsford, and was nonexistent, and not even dreamed of, when the canal was opened in 1803. Just before this a canal had been opened for the passage of boats and rafts