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Medford Historical Society Papers, Volume 29., The Cradock house, past and future. (search)
brought up a family of seven sons and seven daughters in the Cradock house, but this family was well to do and Captain Peter was captain of the military company and for thirteen year's Medfords first representative lo the General Court. At all events, father or son built the new brick house, and Captain Peter was probably the first to dwell in it, somewhere between 1677 and 1680. I like to think that perhaps he took there his first bride, Elizabeth, in 1670, and that there was born in 1676 Anna, the first birth recorded on the extant Medford records. At all events, it must have been standing ready for his high-born second wife, Mary Cotton, who came in 1684 to him with the blood of two New Hampshire governors and a poetess in her veins, for she was granddaughter of Ann Dudley, the poetess. Her father had the splendid name of the Reverend Seaborn Cotton, and belonged undoubtedly to that distinguished family of ministers. The first son by this marriage was named Cotton Tufts, a son
f the Cradock heirs. It is well to remember that territorially the Medford of its earliest days was but about four square miles entirely surrounded by Charlestown, entirely north of the river, and Peter Tufts' purchase in the eastern corner. And Peter Tufts (father or son, perhaps both) had a dwelling-house erected. Young Peter, who successively was Ensign, Leftenant and Captain Peter, was twenty-two when he took unto himself a wife, Elizabeth Lynde of Malden, in 1670. As their daughter Anna, born in 1676, is the first written in Medford records, there may have been more of the family that we have no record of. What legends shall we build up of that time, the Medford people, and its dwellings and homes? Well, the Medford people of that day were not the cosmopolitan Americans of today; they were English emigrants and their children, distant but loyal subjects of the British king. Peter Tufts' boyhood was during the time of Cromwell and the commonwealth, and during its last ei