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growing city of Boston there came a market for milk, and the business increased accordingly. The wagon business felt its influence, also, and Medford-built milk wagons were in demand, because of their excellent and thorough workmanship. Mr. Francis Wait, now over fourscore years, tells much of interest and of his own experience in the business over sixty-five years ago. Mr. Joseph E. Ober, the veteran grocer of West Medford, was formerly in the milk business, and tells of his route, whicJ. E. Ober may have succeeded Mr. Milliken. Mr. Ober sold out to Lockhart & Munsey; and there was T. H. Nourse, who also came from the Foot of the Rocks; also a Mr. Hobbs. These were the advance guard of the present army of local milkmen. In Mr. Wait's reminiscences, which follow, there is ample opportunity to read between the lines by comparison with present-day methods, remembering that the first railroad train passed through Medford only ten years before his driving milk wagon, and that t
quiry fails to establish the date when they first met, but probably when they had reached middle life. One guest was always present and doubtless entertained his hosts with many a good story—George Nichols. But time passed on and Medford's Old Sexton (Nichols) could truly say in the words of the song, I gather them in, I gather them in. About ten years ago they met for the last time, three (possibly four, as there were but seven) men present on that occasion. They had passed the age of fourscore years, and the memories of the past and their old associations were too much for them to longer gather thus. This account, meager and perhaps faulty at points, is compiled at the instance of Mr. Francis Wait, who furnishes most of the details. Some are given by Miss Emma, daughter of Colonel Law, and some by Mr. Frederic Symmes, who attended a few meetings, and probably their final one, with his father, who is the only survivor See following article. of the 18-8 Boys of Medfor
A query Answered. On page 97, Vol. XV, of the Register, is a quotation from Francis Parkman (written in 1845) relating to a navy surgeon at Medford, followed by the editor's query, Who was he? Mr. Francis Wait writes, referring to Parkman's stay in Medford: In those days a Colonel Jaques lived at Ten Hills Farm-house, which was a short distance over the line in Charlestown (now Somerville) and set some way back from Medford turnpike. I have seen Jaques ride through Medford on gunning trips with his hounds following, and sometimes on the return home there would be one or more dogs hours behind him. I have been told the story of his swapping horses with a man in Charlestown Square, after which he told him to examine the horse's eyes, one of which was artificial. I think that Colonel Jaques, who was a veterinary, if not a naval surgeon, answers the query. The following, from the Somerville journal Souvenir, 1892, is communicated by Mrs. H. M. Heald of that city:
The Adams farm region. Because of the extensive building operations (in the locality named below) in recent years, and the present development of so-called College Acres, including the demolition of the Willis house, at the corner of Main street and Stearns avenue, the following, communicated by Mr. Francis Wait, is of interest:— Squire Nathan Adams, also called Captain, owned a large farm on both sides of Main street. His dwelling-house stood on the site of the Mystic House. Removed to Tufts square. After his death (1842) George E. Adams (a grandson) carried on the farm and had a milk route to Boston. he (George) married, in 1847, Miss Staniels of Malden. He moved the old house and built the house afterward called Mystic House, where he took his bride. A driveway at the north side of his house led to his farmhouse, which was later moved on the opposite side of Main street. On the south side of his dwelling-house was an extensive apple orchard (destroyed by canker-worms
Medford Historical Society Papers, Volume 18., The Tufts family residences. (search)
n thickness. Doubtless Mr. Johnson (Clope, he was familiarly called) meant thinness, and from what we know of the durability of that old-time lumber it is not impossible that they were the original shingles. Of the numerous book and paper accounts of this old house we have never found any discovery of facts Mr. Brooks' preface predicted that names it the Cradock house prior to Mr. Brooks' history, and all are repetition to a greater or less extent thereof, save those of Mr. Cushing, Judge Wait and Mr. Hooper in Vol. I, No. 4, and Vol. VII, No. 2, of the register, the proofs submitted before alluded to. And so we answer our own query relative to the birthplace and early home of the elder Dr. Tufts, confidently asserting it to be the old two-story brick house in East Medford (that because of Mr. Brooks' assumption, unproven statement and inference, has for fifty years been widely heralded as the oldest house in America, built by Mr. Cradock,) and assign its erection to the first
A receipt in full. But a short time before his passing away Mr. Francis Wait brought us two slips of unruled paper, yellow with age, but on which the ink is black and permanent, and legible as when written one hundred and thirty years ago. We reproduce their words as nearly as can be in type, wishing we might the excellent script of the writer. Dr. Mr. Zakariah Sims to John Fullton. 1785 Aug 3To 4 Gallo Rum & Sundries a 2/£ 0.8— To 1 Gallon Mollasses£ 1.9 To 1 Mollasses Hoghead£ 5— To 1/2 Barrell Rum 15 1/2 Gallo a 1/61.3.3 To 10 Gallo do a 2/1— —— 2.18.0 By 1 load Salt-Hay—-- This slip had been folded four ply to the size of 1 3/4× 3 3/4 inches, and endorsed on the end. Zakariah Sims Acct— 1785— Both parties were Medford men; the first was great grandson of Reverend Zechariah, the first minister of Charlestown to whom a grant of land was made, which later became a part of Medford. By inheritance a portion remains in the family name today