The full title of the magnificent volume of Watertown genealogy by Henry Bond includes the following:
The Early History of the
Illustrations, Maps and Notes.
The History section of 101 pages is Appendix I, and includes much information concerning the land distributions and later land transfers between Watertown residents. Dr. Bond prepared a very detailed map showing Original Allotments of land, together with a 13 page discussion in Appendix IV of how it was prepared and details concerning the many lots.
The map bound at the end of the volume measures 13 inches by 20 inches, is printed in shades of gray, and is a work of art. The hand-lettered detail identifies many topgraphical features, and includes the original proprieter and size of each lot, together with the names of subsequent owners in many cases. The map has been scanned in sections and then reconstructed, resulting in a large image size of 4460 by 2863 pixels (three times original width and height at 72 pixels per inch). The large size was needed in order to provide some of the clarity of the original, but to keep the file size manageable it was scanned in black and white rather than grayscale - thus the image does not reflect the beauty of the printed map. An image only one half the width and height of the orginal was prepared to provide an overview of the map.
Appendix IV follows the map, together with the Sections of Appendix I which are referenced in Appendix IV. [The 'dagger' footnote indicator has been replaced with a double asterisk to avoid possible problems with a variety of browsers and fonts.]
In Sections 84 and 85, pp. 1020 and 21, are pointed out some of the difficulties to be encountered in attempting a plan or map of the original divisions and allotments of land. These were by no means exaggerated. But, having discovered that we, had fallen into one or more important errors, regarding early localities, through the hastiness of our conclusions from inadequate premises, we were induced to enter upon a more thorough investigation in order to rectify them, but without the expectation of succeeding so well, or proceeding so far, that the result could be offered in the form of a map of ancient Watertown. The success of the intricate and perplexing labor having far exceeded our expectation, the result of these researches is here presented in a map, with some explanations.
As no record of that period gives the dimensions of a lot, but only the quantity of land, and that "by estimation," not by measurement, all that is attempted in the map, is, to show the size of the lots, and their relations to each other, to roads, and to the natural boundaries. It is evident that the estimation of the quantity of land in each lot was not always accurate, as, in many instances, the same lot, in different descriptions or records of it, is stated to contain different quantities of land. If their exact outlines could be discovered, they would probably exhibit very many discrepancies between them and those on this map. This is, however, of comparatively small importance, if their size and position are determined. That such is the case, generally, with few and unimportant exceptions, we are entirely satisfied.
In the course of the following explanations, the term grant is applied to lots where the title was derived directly from the town, not by purchase, and the holder was the first individual owner. The term possession is applied to lots obtained by grant, purchase, gift, or inheritance, and the holder of it was not always the first owner. In the early schedules there is only one instance of a lot purchased of the town, and that was the 47 A. lot purchased by Mr. Nathaniel Biscoe, the rich tanner. In later times, there are many instances of such purchases.
It may be seen, in the copy of the original records, p. 995, &c., that there is frequent mention of general enclosures, and fencing in common. The same may be seen in the succeeding town records, and it was many years before they were discontinued. The first mention of general enclosures occurs very early (Jan. 3, 1634-5), and it was afterwards (May 30, 1643) ordered, that "a fence with 4 rails, or any fence as good, is counted sufficient." They generally had distinct names, and each was surrounded with roads, or some natural boundary.
Pond Field was bounded E. by Fresh Pond; W. by School Street; S. by Belmont Street; and N. probably by the Road to the Pond.
Meadfield was bounded S. by Belmont St.; E. by Common St. (Pequusset Road); W. by Lexington St. (road to Concord). It was probably so named because it included Pequusset Meadow.
Bowman's Field was bounded N. by Belmont St.; S. W. by Orchard St., and E. by Bowman's Lane. These names indicate the respect entertained for Mr. Bowman.
Jennison's Close, or Field, was bounded W. by Bowman's Lane; N. by Belmont St.; E. by School St.; S. by Mill St. (Mount Auburn St.). Capt. Jennison's homestall was much larger than any other in this tract.
How's Field was bounded S. by Sudbury Road (Main St.); W. by Lexington St.; N. by Orchard St., and E. by Bowman's Lane and Mill St. (Mount Auburn St.). Elder Edward How was the largest proprietor in this tract. It included the east range of lots in the Town Plot.
Pound Field was bounded N. by Mill St. (Mount Auburn St.); S. and W. by Bank Lane; E. by Grove St. The town pound was anciently in it, near the N. E. corner. About 1687, the pound was at the S. E. corner of Lexington and Belmont Streets.
The Hither Plain [see § 91], for several years, had a general enclosure, and the cartway betwixt lots [Pleasant St.] was not a fenced road. It is, indeed, highly probable that few, if any of the lots, in the Hither and Further Plains, were ever fenced according to the original allotments. Early and frequent changes of ownership occurred, before the lots began to have distinct fences, and two or more lots were often consolidated into one.
There is some obscurity about the arrangement of lots in Dorchester Field, and the delineation of them is not entirely satisfactory. It probably had Do precise boundaries. The following lots, in the schedule of grants, are described as "in Dorchester Field," viz., E. Child, 10 A.; J. Loveran, 8 A.; W. Jennison, 6 A.; John Bernard, 6 A.; R. Tucke, 2 A. At a later date, the large homestall of John Benjamin was said to be in Dorchester Field.
There is a small tract of land between Dorchester Field and the homestall of Nathaniel Foote, which it has been found very difficult to delineate, according to the lines or divisions of the original grants, owing to the repeated changes of ownership, and the defective descriptions of boundaries. Jeremiah Norcross was not a grantee; but, in 1643, he owned a homestall of 26 A. in that locality, made up of land bought of John Page, Robert Tucke, Richard Amler, and Jacob Logan (? Seger). This land of Mr. Norcross included the 14 A. homestall granted to Edmund Mason, and the 7 A. homestall granted to Robert Tucke. It is conjectured that Page and Amler bought the land of Mason, and sold it to Norcross, and that Seger had a 5 A. lot, obtained by grant or purchase, which he sold to Norcross, and which would complete the 26 A. homestall. Not long afterwards, Mr. Norcross purchased of H. Cuttris the 16 A. homestall granted to N. Foote.
There are a few instances, in the schedules of grants, where the same lot appears to have been granted to two persons. In these cases it is probable that the first grantee relinquished it to the town, exchanging it for another, or perhaps failed to comply with the terms of the grant. One instance of this is the lot north side of Belmont Street, next east of R. Holden. It was granted to Edmund Sherman (who left Watertown in 1637) and to Bryan Pendleton. From the latter it passed successively to N. Busby, John Stebbins, J. White, J. Coolidge, and Rev. John Sherman, who purchased the lots of J. and R. Holden.
We have not attempted to delineate all the lots of marsh land. In most instances, they are described as bounded S. or S. E. by the river, and N. or N. W. by Bank Lane, with the omission of the boundaries on the other two sides. As these lots were not residences, it is the less interesting to determine their outlines and localities. There were 21 lots of marsh granted, amounting to 621 acres. The largest lot (10 A.) was that of Dea. Ephraim Child, bounded S. E. by the river, and N. W. by Bank Lane. It was probably opposite to his first residence, situated at the southwest corner of Water Street and Bank Lane. Two lots of marsh were granted to Elder Richard Brown. The first (3 A.), which he sold early to Simon Stone, was opposite to his first homestall, E. of Mount Auburn, which he sold to R. Wellington. There were three 2 A. lots of marsh between the homestall of Nathaniel Foote and the river. The easternmost was that granted to N. Foote. The next was that of John Smith. The other was the second lot granted to R. Browne. Pine Marsh was the first marsh at the E. or S. E. of Dorchester Field. Three 2 A. lots in it were granted to Robert Lockwood, Nicholas Knapp, and Thomas Rogers. Several of the marsh lots may be seen delineated on the map.
It has been stated in § 81, that Pequusset Meadow was divided into numerous small lots, They were situated in a range, beginning at John Flemming's homestall, and extending north to Pequusset Common, in the following order. Those marked (*) denote an original grantee. *J. Doggett, 2 A., sold to John Flemming; J. Bisco, 3 A.; *J. Lawrence, 2 A.; *W. Hammond, 3 A.; *H. Goldstone, 2 A., passed to his son-in-law, Henry Bright, Jr.; *N. Bowman, 2 A.; *Isaac Cummings, 2 A., sold to Henry Kemball, Jr.; T. Boyden, 3 A.; *E. James, 3 A.; *I. Sterne, 2 A.; *J. Warren, 3 A.; *J. Simson, 2 A., passed to G. Parkhurst, who in. his wid., and who sold it to W. Hammond; *H. Bright, Jr., 2 A., sold to W. Hammond; N. Busby, 4 A.; S. Freeman; S. Eire.
By referring to § 27, it will be seen that some locality or region, at the east of Mount Auburn, at a very early day, was called "The Town." Whether this was applied to some point, or what was its extent, the records do not show, and we are left to conjecture. The tract of land at the east, north, and south of Mount Auburn, was undoubtedly the one where the plantation was begun in the summer of 1630, and it is conjectured that the lot, marked G. Phillips on the map, at the junction of Cambridge and Water Streets, was the centre, and the point from which distances were reckoned. Sir Richard Saltonstall's homestall was bounded N. W. by land of Mr. Phillips, and it is supposed that Mr. Phillips's lot extended northwestwardly to the junction of Cambridge and Water Streets; that after "the new meeting-house" was built near the Old Graveyard, Mr. Phillips sold two parcels of the lot to Mr. E. Angier and H. Pelham, Esq. It appears by the schedules of possessions, that the lots of Pelham and Angier were purchases and not grants, and that in the list of Mr. Phillips's grants and possessions (in the same schedule, made out a short time before his decease), he had no lot bounded S. E. by land of Sir Richard. It was not unusual for lots to be described by their original or early boundaries, after the adjoining lands had changed owners; and thus Sir Richard's lot, after it had passed to his soil Samuel, was described as bounded N. W. by G. Phillips. It is our conjecture (supported by plausible reasons, but without positive data), that the first house of worship was built on that lot, at the junction of Cambridge and Water Streets, on the map marked G. Phillips; and that if any burials took place before the opening or appropriation of the Old Graveyard, they would be in that lot or its immediate neighborhood.
By consulting the map, it will be seen that a great portion of the lots, east of Mount Auburn, were not held by grantees, but by purchasers, and at the time the schedules were made out (about 1643) many of those grantees, whose names are marked on the lots, had sold them, and moved to other larger lots, situated farther west, or had migrated from the town. R. Seeley, J. Livermore, R. Feake, A. Ward, R. Abbot, and B. Windes, had moved to Connecticut; A. Shaw to Dedham; Mr. Phillips, R. Browne, A. Browne, J. Firmin, J. Warren, E. Child, I. Sterne, W. Hammond, and J. Lawrence, had moved to other lots, which may be seen on the map. From the situation of the homestall lot of Leonard Chester, and the time of his arrival, it is presumed that it was not a grant, but a purchase; and it may have been the grant made either to John Masters or Capt. Patrick, who moved to Cambridge about the time of Mr. Chester's arrival. It will be seen on the map that the lot, marked as a grant to John Hayward, contained 24 acres. This is so much larger than any other grant made in that region, that it seems to require some explanation. Our presumption is that a part of the 24 A. was granted to him; that he purchased one or two other contiguous lots, which had been granted to those who left the town early, and that then, in the schedules, as in the case of J. Norcross, the whole was inserted as one lot. On the map may be seen two lots, on Bank Lane, near Water Street, marked Edward Goffe, who was a purchaser and not a grantee. These were undoubtedly grants to some of the planters of 1630, and it is not unlikely that one of them was made to W. Jennison; for his large 50 A. homestall was among lots granted at a later date than the time of his settlement. The lots east of Mount Auburn are sometimes styled Planting Land, and there is reason to believe that all the lands in this region, fit for planting, were granted the first year. There were two or more lots granted at a later date, as those of Simon Stone and R. Wellington; but these were among the rough grounds of Mount Auburn, and were unsuited to planting or tillage.
The tradition is, that Mr. George Phillips resided in a house opposite to the Old Graveyard, very near the "new meeting-house," and this is so probable and plausible, that his supposed dwelling is marked on the map. Yet there is good reason to question its correctness.
Mr. Phillips's homestall in the Town Plot, at the corner of Orchard and Lexington Streets, was the first in the list of his possessions; in that schedule of grants, which was completed a short time before his decease. In other instances, almost without exception, a man's homestall, where he resided, is placed first in the list of his possessions. It is also to be observed that, if he lived on this lot, he was the next neighbor of his co-pastor, Mr. Knowles, whose homestall was on the other side of Orchard Street, and it was only half a mile north of Mr. Carter's residence. There is no doubt but that the widow of Mr. Phillips, and his son Jonathan, lived on this lot. In the Inventory of Jonathan, 1704, is, the dwelling-house that was his father Phillips. If Mr. Phillips moved to this lot, he only complied with the terms, on which it was granted, that lie should "build and dwell upon it." In the next place, the lot of Mr. Phillips, upon the Meeting-house Common, is the last in the list of his grants, and it is not called a homestall, but only "fifteen acres of upland."
The 12 A. homestall of Thomas Mayhew, may be seen on the map, near the bridge. May 6, 1654, he sold this (then called his orchard, containing 9 A., and occupied by John Bush), to Nicholas Davison, of Charlestown, for all his (D.'s) sheep, cattle, and land in Martha's Vineyard, except the land (1000 A.) which he received of Mayhew for the Oldham Farm. Nov. "a, 1655, Davison sold this Mayhew homestall to John Fuller, of Cambridge, for £44. Fuller sold it to Richard Sanger, May 15, 1657, for £46. From Richard Sanger, it passed to his son John; then to his grandson David; then to his great grandson William; then to his gr. gr. grandson Richard, who now occupies a part of it. A part of it was formerly the residence of Rev. Dr. Francis, arid a part of it is now the residence of Dr. Hiram Hosmer.
Mr. John Oldham left Watertown and died before any schedule of grants or possessions was made out, and his name is not found in them. It is very probable that the 60 A. homestall, bought by John Benjamin, was his residence. [See p. 1037.] The Wear is supposed to have been opposite to this lot.
Richard and Abraham Browne settled on adjoining lots on Bank Lane, east of Mount Auburn, but they both moved very early to other lots, as may be seen on the map. Richard very early sold his first homestall to R. Wellington, and his ad. joining marsh to Simon Stone; John Train bought his last homestall. Abraham Browne retained his first homestall and adjoining marsh, until after the summary of possessions was made out.
In the Inventory of Abraham Browne [p. **125], his homestead was reported to contain 60 A. Unless there was a mistake in the estimate of the quantity of his land in the early schedule, his homestead, in this Inventory (besides the 40 A. between Main St. arid Pleasant St.), must have included the 10 A. on the S. side of Pleasant St., granted to him and to John Browne, and 10 additional acres contiguous thereto; for the additional 20 A. to the ancient homestall, could be obtained in no other direction [see § 94]. That a part of the estate was on the S. side of Pleasant St., is shown by the following mortgage. Whether this was the grant made to John Browne, has not been ascertained. Ap. 13, 1697 [soon after the settlement of the estate], Abraham Browne mortgaged to Caleb Church, 6 A. adjoining Church (the owner of Dirty Green); N. by high Dirty Green, bounded E. by C. C way to Beaver Plain; W. by Abraham Browne; S. by Charles River. This lot of A. B. soon passed to Edward Goddard; for, on the 22 Mar. 1705-6, Caleb Church mortgaged "12 acres of pasture, called Dirty Green," bounded S. and E. by the river; W. by Edward Goddard; N. by highway (Pleasant St.). It has not been ascertained how this place acquired the name of Dirty Green, and Dirty Place.
Upon the final settlement of the estate in 1694 [see p. **125], Capt. Abraham Browne, in behalf of himself and other heirs of his father, Jonathan, bought of the other heirs their rights in the estate. The records do not show how the estate was divided among the heirs of Jonathan, after this purchase; but some information, Dot very exact, is derived from succeeding transactions. The western part was assigned to Abraham, the eldest son, and ex'r of Jonathan. He built upon it, and it has never ceased to be owned by his descendants. The eastern and larger portion, 'was assigned to the widow, Mary, and the younger sons. A large part of this, soon passed out of the possession of the family, but was recovered after the lapse of about 28 years, and held in the family until about 1808.
Mar. 30, 1703, wid. Mary, and her sons, William and Benjamin, for £192, sold to Samuel Barnard 25 A., bounded N. by Sudbury Road, and land of Mary Browne; W. by Mary Browne, and partly by land of Serjt. John Fiske. By this deed, it appears that she retained some of the land assigned to her and her younger sons, and a subsequent deed shows its amount. Mar. 18, 1705-6, William and Benjamin B., sold to their brother Abraham, 91 A., bounded N. by Sudbury Road; W. by land of Abraham Browne; E. and S. by Samuel Barnard. On the same day, Abraham signed to his brothers William and Benjamin, a quitclaim of his right in the land which they had sold to Barnard. By a deed dated Dec. 23, 1715, Capt. Abraham Browne conveyed to his son Jonathan, 14 A. "in easterly part of my estate," bounded E. by Samuel Barnard; S. by S. Barnard and John Fiske; N. by highway; W. by Abraham Browne. Mar. 18, 1730-1, James Nutting, of Wrentham, gunsmith, and Mercy, his wife, and Esther Barnard, spinster (both daughters of Samuel Barnard), for £450, sold to John Browne (youngest son of Capt. Abraham), house, barn, shop, and 24 A. land, bounded N. by highway; W. by Jonathan and Samuel Browne, who held, by deed and legacy, that western portion, which their father obtained by settlement and purchase. The next day, Mar. 19, John Browne sold to his brother Jonathan, the same property for the same sum, subject to a mortgage of £220, to Jonathan Nutting, of Wrentham. After this mortgage was paid off (as it was done), the ancient homestead was again vested in the Browne family.
Jonathan Browne (eldest son of Capt. Abraham), in the lifetime of his father, lived in the ancient mansion, bequeathed to him by the Will of his father, situated on the N. side of Sudbury Road, nearly opposite to the house of his father. There is little doubt but that he lived in that house, until after the removal of his brother Samuel to Leicester, so that all his children were born in it; and it is very probable that it was his permanent residence. If he moved into the house, built and occupied by his father, he could have resided in it only a short time, as not long after the removal of his brother Samuel, who inherited and occupied the house, it was, by his son, Jonathan, Jr., mortgaged, Jan. 12, 1747, to Capt. Thomas Homans, who occupied it for a few years. This ancient house, on the N. side of Sudbury Road, without much doubt, was built and occupied by the first Nathan Fiske, of Watertown, on that lot in the Town Plot, which he bought of Robert Feake. From him it passed to his son, Serjt. John Fiske, who was living in it as late as 1703. How or when it came into the possession of Capt. Abraham Browne, has not been ascertained. From Jonathan, Senior, it passed to Col. William Bond, who married his youngest daughter, and who also owned that part of the ancient Browne homestall, which was also bequeathed by Capt. Abraham to his son Jonathan. The western part of it, with the house built by Capt. Abraham B., was occupied by Jonathan, Jr., Esq., from whom it passed to his son, Major Adam Browne.
The 28 A. homestall of Henry Goldstone passed to his son-in-law, Dea. Henry Bright; then to his eldest son, Dea. John Bright, who died without issue, and it passed to his second son, Nathaniel Bright; then to his son, Cornet Henry Bright; then to his son-in-law, Isaac Sanderson; and Dec. 12, 1777, it was divided to his sons, Josiah and Henry Sanderson.
The 14 A. homestall, granted to Thomas Bartlett, and where he always resided, passed to his son-in-law, John Applin. Previous to Ap. 1683, Applin had sold to Henry Spring the eastern part, 6 3/4 A. of it, and on June 8, 1697, Spring sold this to Jonas Bond. Ap. 3, 1683, Applin sold to John Dix the west part of it, then called 10 acres' Jan. 12, 1719-20, John Dix sold half an acre of this to Jonas Bond, Sen.; and July 5, 1732, John Dix, of Watertown, and Samuel Dix, of Worcester, sold the remainder of it, with mansion house, barn, and orchard, then called 8 A., to Jonas Bond, Jr., for £250, current money. This Bartlett lot, with other lands on the north, was the homestead of Jonas Bond, Jr., Esq. The dwellinghouse stood where Mr. Cushing has built his farm-house. Sept. 8, 1695, Jonas Bond bought of William Bull and wife Elizabeth, 8 A. [the grant to Thomas Smith, which he sold to William Perry in 1651], "near the hill called and known by the name of Pigsgosuck, and is bounded east by Dea. Sanderson; west by the highway called Pigsgosuck highway [Common St.]; north by lands of Ellis Barron and John Chinery; south by land of Joseph Hastings." This land of Joseph Hastings, was the Benjamin Crispe lot. June 17, 1717, Jonas Bond, Sen., bought of Timothy Barron and wife Rachel, 12 A. adjoining the last purchase, and situated partly on the W. side of Common Street. A short time before this, Barron had purchased this land, or a part of it, of his father, Ellis Barron.
The lot of Dea. Thomas Hastings, on the west side of School St., was always his residence. He added to it by purchase the lot of H. Bright, Sen. This homestead, then 20 A., passed to his youngest son, Samuel. Mar. 15, 1727-8, his son Daniel (? David) for £300, bills of credit, sold 2/3 of it to a committee of the town, for a ministerial lot, for the accommodation of Rev. S. Storer. The next month (Ap. 1), Joseph Coolidge, of Cambridge, guardian of Nathaniel, the youngest son of Samuel, sold the other 3d of it to said committee. Oct. 18, 1755, a committee of the town sold this lot to Samuel Mason, housewright, of Newton, for £288, lawful money. This was the next year after building the meeting-house, at the junction of Bowman's Lane and Belmont St. The town bought the lot (1/2 A.), for this meeting-house, of Nathaniel Harris, Esq., Jan. 29, 1754.
John Fiske bought the W. end (6 A.) of the Henry Dow lot, next south of Dea. T. Hastings, and this was his first homestall, which he sold, Mar. 15, 1648-9, to Charles Stearns.
Oct. 18, 1755, a committee of the town sold to Ebenezer Stone, "14 A., formerly used as a training-field, bounded N. W. by Stone (the purchaser); S. by road [Belmont St.]; W. by, David Coolidge; E. by lane [Grove St.], leading to Mrs. John Coolidge's house." It was on the training-place that the Fairs were ordered to be held, in 1639.
The lands of Elder Edward How [see map], obtained by repeated grants and purchase, passed to his son-in-law Nathaniel Treadway. Nov. 14, 1688, N. Treadway, for £140, sold this land (70 A.) and house, to his son Josiah. Oct. 13, 1699, Josiah Treadway and wife Dorothy, then of Charlestown, for £120, sold the western half of this land (35 A.) to Samuel Parris. Mar. 3, 1703, Parris sold it to Nathaniel Hobart, of Hingham. Hobart sold it to Daniel Stowall, who conveyed it back to Hobart, Feb. 6, 1707-8, and on the 12 Jan. 1709-10, Hobart sold it to Robert Goddard for £230, then called 34 acres. It was then bounded S. by highway Main St.]; E. by Caleb Church and Josiah Treadway; W. by Samuel Eddy, Elizabeth Woodward [wid. of George], Caleb Church, and Benjamin Wellington; N. by B. W. and S. Eddy. The other part of the How estate (27 or 30 A.) passed from Josiah to his son, James Treadway, who, on Jan. 9, 1710-11, sold it to John Coolidge, housewright. It was bounded S. by County Road (Main St.); W. by C. Church and R. Goddard; N..by R. Goddard and S. Eddy; E. by County Road (Mount Auburn St.), and Samuel Eddy. It will be observed that this was not the whole of the east half. About 6 A. had been sold to Caleb Church, probably soon after the purchase by Josiah Treadway. Church was licensed to keep a tavern in 1686. Ap. 25, 1712, C. Church, millwright, sold this land (6 A.) to Thomas Learned, where he and his family kept a tavern fifty years or more. The Spring Hotel has been built on that lot.
The 2 A. lot, bounded S. by the river, N. by Mill Creek, and extending from the bridge to the dam, was a grant to E. How. This grant, in addition to what is said in § 140, is an additional reason for believing that he built the mill. [See p. 747.]
In 1635, 20 A. was laid out "to the use of the mill:" it was not a grant in fee to the owner of the mill. The town still held it, and had the right to dispose of it, and for this reason Mr. Dudley is not named among the proprietors. In 1677, the town sold a small part of it to Caleb Church, which was about the date of big settlement in Watertown. July 7, 1752, a committee. of the town sold the eastern point of this land (16 rods) to Nathaniel Harris, Esq.
The 150 acres granted "to the use of the wear," was by the Court confirmed to Mr. Mayhew in 1641 [§§ 131-4], but it was not included in the list of big possessions, and it has not been ascertained when or by whom it first began to be occupied and improved.
The records do not show who was the original grantee of the 20 A. homestall of John Flemming. His heirs sold this and other lands to Rev. Roger Nevinson. Mar. 4, 1677-8, John Nevinson, son and att'y of Roger Nevinson, for £160, sold to Nathaniel Bright this homestall (house and 20 A.); also two lots of dividend land, of 15 A. and 50 A. Ap. 2, 1651, Flemming bought of Thomas Andrews, of Camb., the lot at the N. E. corner of Lexington and Belmont St., which was a grant to Edmund James; but probably it was sold before the decease of Flemming to John Bisco. Flemming also bought land on the south side of Belmont St., nearly opposite to big homestall, which his wid. and ex'ors sold to his son-in-law, John Barnard.
It is probable that William Hammond settled at first on Cambridge Road, very near the Cambridge line [see map]. Whether this was a grant to him, the records do not show. He sold it early and settled on his 40 A. homestall, situated east of Pequusset meadow. He also owned three small lots in Pequusset meadow, one of them granted to him, and the other two purchased. This homestall passed to his son Thomas. The Inventory of the estate of T. H. by John Livermore and Ens. John Sherman, showed that it did not equal the amount of his debts, and the estate was assigned to John Livermore and Steadman.
On the 29th Sept., 1663, Edmund Sherman, clothworker, of Dedham, Eng. formerly of Watertown), by his attorney, Rev. John Sherman, his brother, brought a suit against the assignees for "two broadcloths," adventured and sent over to Thomas Hammond. Verdict for the plaintiff, £40. It appears by the will of Dea. Henry Bright, P. 105, that this homestall, with the adjoining meadows, was put into the possession of Rev. John Sherman, who sold them to Dea. H. Bright.
John Warren first settled on a lot on Water Street; but he sold it, and moved early to a lot on the east side of Lexington Street, next to that of Isaac Sterne, where he resided permanently. The N. E. corner of Belmont and Lexington Streets formerly was called Commodore's Corner, and it is said to have been so named for Samuel Warren, who lived there, and was called The Commodore.
Isaac Sterne settled first upon his homestall on Cambridge Road, near Cambridge Line. But he moved early to a larger homestall on the east side of Lexington St., immediately south of that of John Warren, where he resided permanently. It passed to his son Samuel, then to his grandson, Nathaniel. John Firmin settled first, as it is believed, on Water Street, but removed early to his land on Bank Lane, a little distance east of Dorchester Field.
The locality of the homestalls of Abraham Shaw and William Bridges imply that they were first settlers, but they sold and moved away so early that the schedules do not show whether they were granted or purchased.
The grant of a homestall to John Lawrence, east of the Fresh Pond, and adjoining that of Robert Seeley, implies that he was a first settler; but he settled very early on a lot granted to him on the west side of Common Street, which was his permanent residence, until he moved to Groton, except, perhaps, a temporary residence in Boston.
In 1643, Capt. John Sherman owned two homestalls, both obtained by purchase. The arrangement of lots, in the list of his possessions, implies that he occupied the lot on Bank Lane, which had been granted to Thomas Rogers. But it is more probable that he settled at first on his homestall on the east side of Common Street, immediately south of Strawberry Hill. This was his permanent residence, and it passed to his son Joseph. In 1643 it consisted of the two lots granted Daniel Morse and Edmund James, and, by estimation, contained 16 1/2 acres. It was afterwards enlarged by purchasing adjoining lands, and, in the time of big son Joseph, embraced the lots granted to John Reynolds and 1. Mixer. He had few grants, and most of his early possessions were grants made to Thomas Rogers.
The residence of Rev. John Sherman was the Richard Holden lot on the N. side of Belmont Street. He next purchased the Stebbin lot, on the east, as already stated. In 1673, Justinian Holden, then of Cambridge, "sold to John Sherman, Pastor, two parcels of land adjoining or adjacent to the dwelling-house of Mr. Sherman." His land, after this purchase, nearly surrounded the Pond at the N. E. corner of Belmont and Grove Streets. The town had granted Mr. Sherman the use of 20 A. on Meeting-house Common for firing.
Concerning the residence of Thurston Raynor, Gregory Stone, Thomas Boylston, and John Chinery, see those names in the Catalogue, pp. 1005, &c.
The lot of Christopher Grant, on the N. side of Belmont Street, is called a grant of 5 A. in the schedule of grants; but in the sale of it to G. Church, with one acre of Pond, it is stated that 3 A. were granted to himself, 3 A. to L. Waters, and the 1 A. of Pond granted to John Griggs. At this sale it was bounded W. by Mr. Sherman. The lot of 0. Callow, on the W. side of School Street, passed to Wm. Williams, then to his widow, then to her son, Abraham Williams, who sold it to R. Wellington. The Godfrey lot was granted to Hugh Mason, who probably sold it to Godfrey at the time he [M.] purchased his large homestall on the E. side of School Street. Oct. 17, 1653, William Godfrey sold big homestall to Robert Sanderson [see p. 257]. A part (6 A.) of the 16 A. Parkhurst lot was purchased by H. Mason. This 6 A. was a grant to E. James. The 21 A. homestall of Capt. H. Mason was his permanent residence, and he purchased a part of the H. Dow lot (? or R. Veazy lot), on the other side of the street. It passed to his son Joseph; then to his grandson, Dea. Joseph, Jr., Esq.; then probably to his gr. grandson, Nehemiah. The Ellis Barron lot (which was a grant to Richard Kemball) was the residence of that family, so long as they remained in town. Ellis Barron, Jr., sold it, or a part of it, in 1707, to his son Timothy, who sold it, in 1717, to Jonas Bond. The adjoining 8 A. homestall. lot of Thomas Smith was bought by Win. Perry about the time Smith moved within the present limits of Waltham. [see Jonas Bond above.]
The 7 A. lot of Benjamin Crispe was big residence, until he moved to Groton, soon after which he gold it to Thomas Boyden, about which time he (B.) returned to Watertown. The 41 A. lot, at the S. E. corner of Belmont and School Streets, was granted to John Lawrence, who sold it about 1642, to Wm. Page, but did not execute the deed until Oct. 27, 1662, when he was about to move to Groton. The 7 A. lot next south of it was granted to B. Pendleton, and purchased by Wm. Page. [This lot is also in the list of grants made to J. Simson.] The next, south of this, was a 7 A. homestall lot, purchased by Dea. N. Guy. This was his permanent residence. The 3 A. lot of upland next south of the last was granted to N. Guy. These lots passed to his son-in-law, Joseph Tainter. The next lot south, at the corner of Belmont and School Streets, was granted to Thomas Cakebread, and it was purchased by John Grout.
On the W. side of School St., at the corner of Mt. Auburn St., was the 13 A. homestall granted to Ensign T. Cakebread. From him it passed to John Grout, whose residence it was until he moved to Sudbury. Adjoining this, on the west, was the homestall of John Bernard, where he probably always resided. The west half of it was sold by him to Daniel Smith previous to 1644, and afterwards the other part of it was sold to Smith. After the decease of John Bernard, his widow probably lived it the S. E. corner of Main and Howard Streets, on the Carter lot.
The next, north of these lots of Bernard and Cakebread, was the 12 A. lot granted to Richard Browne, from whom it passed to George Richardson, and, as early as 1643, to John Train, who resided there permanently. May 12, 1709, his son John and his grandson John mortgaged this lot to N. Bright; and on the 26 Jan., 1710-11, John Train sold it to John Stratton.
The next lot, on the north, was the 14 A. homestall granted to Bryan Pendleton, who resided there until he moved to Sudbury. He probably settled first in "the town," east of Mount Auburn. From him this lot passed to George Munning; then (when Munning moved to Boston) to John Sherman; then bought back by Munning and given to his son-in-law, John Sawin.
The next lot, on the north, was the 12 A. homestall granted to John Simson, who d. June, 1643. It then passed to George Parkhurst, Sen., who m. Simson's widow. After Parkhurst moved to Boston, he sold 6 A. to John Train, and 6 A. to M. Barstow.
The next lot north, at the S. W. corner of School and Belmont St., was the 14 A. homestall granted to Richard Carver. After his decease, it passed to Michael Barstow, who resided there, but a little before his decease, sold it to John Train. For the permanent residence of John Whitney, Sen., see pp. 1016 and 1036.
About 1644, Rev. John Knowles bought the large homestall of Capt. W. Jennison, and about the same time sold his homestall at the junction of Orchard and Belmont Streets to Thomas Strait. Oct. 21, 1644, Strait sold to T. Tarball the western part (6 A.). Ap. 8, 1644, Strait bought of George Bullard the adjoining 8 A. lot. Mar. 16, 1648-9, he sold to Thomas Arnold these lands (then called 20 A.) purchased, part of J. Knowles, part of G. Bullard, and part of Thomas Wincoll. Oct. 20, 1662, T. Arnold and wife Phebe, then of Providence, sold these lands (or a part of them), then called 18 A., with dwelling-house and barn, to John Wincoll. It is stated in the deed that a part was granted to him (T. A.) and a part purchased of T. Strait. On the S. E. corner of the homestall of J. Knowles may be seen a 1 A. lot (marked T. A.) granted to Arnold. This was Arnold's residence, and was included in his sale to J. Wincoll; but the land bought by Strait of Thomas Wincoll, and sold to Arnold, was not included in this sale to J. Wincoll. Oct. 27, 1661, T. Arnold and wife sold to John Whitney, Jr., his land, 17 A., on the S. W. side of Orchard Street, 12 A. of which (adjoining Mrs. Phillips) had been granted, and the rest was that portion of T. Wincoll's lot sold to him by T. Strait. At this date Richard Whitney owned the adjoining land on the S. E., which was a part of the T. Wincoll lot. John Whitney, Jr., already was the proprietor of the lot on Lexington Street, adjoining that of Mrs. Phillips.
We have, in another place, stated the probability, that what is now called White's Hill was the ancient Whitney Hill, as John Whitney and his sons were settled on three sides of it. This is not disproved; but it is, perhaps, quite as probable that the Whitney Hill referred to, in determining the site of the new meeting-house [§ 179], was some smaller elevation in the Whitney lands that was less remote from the site of the meeting-house.
The 16 A. Pickeram lots were bought, Sept. 1, 1646, by Joshua Stubbs, who sold them, Nov. 28, 1654, to Joseph Underwood.
The 4. A. lot, E. of J. Knowles, marked M. & A. B. (Maudlin and Ann Bullard), was probably bought by R. Jennison about 1650. The 6 A. lot of N. Theale, at the east, was sold in 1645 to William Shattuck. June 7, 1650, James Cutler sold the same lot to John Randall (probably the husband of wid. Elizabeth, p. 409). Nathaniel Rolland and Wm. Price not long afterwards had small lots in this neighborhood on Belmont Street. Jan. 1658-9, Richard Smith, bought of T. Arnold I A. in the same neighborhood.
The 12 A. homestall of T. Philbrick, N. W. corner of Belmont and Lexington Streets, was purchased, Jan. 23, 1645-6, by Isaac Sterne, who gave it to his son Samuel [see p. 455]. The 8 A. homestall next west of this, was granted to John Stowers, and occupied by him. It was bought by Bartholomew Pierson in 1644, and by him sold to George Bullard, Mar. 11, 1653-4. This was probably G. Bullard's permanent residence; and the statement [p. 148] that he moved to Weston in 1660 is a mistake. Jan. 29, 1703-4, Samuel Barnard, housewright, and wife Mercy, sold this lot to Capt. Abraham Brown, then called 14 A.; thus enlarged, by an addition either of some of the land granted to Peirce, or perhaps by a purchase of land on the north. This was long known as The Parsonage, and was the residence of Mr. Angier. It is probable that this property was purchased and held by Brown (who had been several years town treasurer), as agent, trustee, or treasurer, for this purpose, and not as his private property. If held as his personal right, there is no evidence that he or any of his family ever resided there. After the removal of the Angier meeting-house and about the time of the purchase of a parsonage for Mr. Storer, Capt. A. Brown sold it to John Stearns.
The next W. of Stowers, was a 4 A. lot granted to Anthony Peirce. The next, W. of this, was a 6 A. lot granted to his father, John Peirce, who sold or gave this to his son Anthony, and settled on two lots in the town plot, on the opposite side of the road. That lot granted to John Peirce is described as bounded W. by a highway. This was probably the highway ordered to be laid out at the hither end of the Great Dividends [see p. 996]. It would be nearly continuous with the road on the W. side of the Town Plot; but it was probably vacated very early, if it was ever opened.
Since writing § 98, it has been ascertained that the tract of land, there described as the Town Plot, was not the whole of it; that the Town Plot also embraced that range of lots on the E. side of Lexington Street, extending from Orchard to Main Street. The remark in § 99, respecting the lot of Mr. Phillips, is therefore inappropriate.
The Town Plot on the east side of Lexington Street.
The first, in the list of lots in the Town Plot, was the 12 A. homestall of Mr. Phillips, at the S. E. corner of Lexington and Orchard Streets. He purchased 3 A. adjoining this. The next, south of it, was the 9 A. (in the Town Plot) granted to E. How. It passed to John Whitney, Jr. The next, south of this, was the 6 A. lot granted to Edmund James, which passed to Richard Wait. The next, south of James, was a 3 A. lot purchased by S. Freeman; but to whom granted, the records do not show. The next, south of this, was the 3 A. lot granted to B. Windes, and by him sold to Richard Benjamin. The next S. was the 4 A. lot granted to William Potter. Richard Woodward bought this and the 6 A. adjoining it on the south, and gave or sold these 10 A. to his son, George Woodward. This was the permanent residence of George Woodward, and it was occupied by his widow and family many years after his decease. The lot next S. of G. Woodward, at the N. E. corner of Lexington and Main Streets, was the 6 A. granted to Edmund Blois, who made it his residence. Some time afterwards he is supposed to have moved to a lot on the S. side of Mount Auburn Street, a little W. of the Old Graveyard.
Town Plot, west side of Lexington Street.
Joseph Tainter owned and occupied a homestall of 18 A., at the N. W. corner of Main and Lexington Streets. It was made up of lots granted to Simon Eire, Gregory Taylor, and 6 of the 9 A. granted to Capt. Patrick. This homestall passed to his son, Simon Tainter. The other 3 A. of Patrick's lot, was bought by John Vahan and by him sold to E. How. Next west of Patrick's, was the 9 A. lot granted to R. Feake. It was purchased by Nathan Fiske, who made it his permanent residence. It passed to his son John, who lived there, perhaps unmarried, to advanced age. There is little doubt but that this is the lot which passed from Capt. Abraham Browne to his son Jonathan, and that it was the residence of the late Col. Willam Bond, who married a daughter of this Jonathan Browne. It is very probable that the house occupied by Col. Wm. Bond, was built by the first Nathan Fiske. It was very ancient, and was removed more than 40 years ago. Sudbury Road, at this point, anciently, ran four rods farther south than it has done for the last 150 years. In Ap. 1703, Abraham Browne having petitioned to have 4 rods land on the Common near his house, the committee made return, July 5, 1703, that they had laid out 4 rods southerly side of the hill,* between Browne's and the present house of Serjt. John Fiske [son and ex'r of Nathan], and have set out [to John Fiske] the same quantity of Browne's land, on the south side of his homestall next the highway leading to Beaver Brook. It appears by a deed of wid. Mary Browne, and her son Benjamin, that Serjt. John Fiske owned land on the south side, and contiguous to the Browne homestall. It is also to be observed that this old mansion of Col. Bond, stood almost in the road, with no space between them, but that the old part of the Browne mansion, stood several (6 or 7) rods from the road, and that after Capt. A. Browne built the new part towards the road, there was still a considerable space between it and the road, [See Abraham Browne, p. 1086].
[* This ancient Fiske mansion, with rooms on both sides of the entrance, was two storied in front; but the hill in the rear, towards the north, rose so abruptly, that the garret floor of a wing of the house, extended in that direction, was on a level with the ground. As an apology to the reader for this particularity, it may be stated that the author was born in that remnant of early Puritan architecture.
Recent researches render it not improbable that John Fiske [11, p. 2101, was a son of Nathan [3, p. 214]; but at present we have not data to determine the question.]
The next west of Nathan Fiske, was the 6 A. homestall granted to Dea. Thomas Hastings. About 1643, he gave this to his servant, Robert Harrington, and on the 4 Mar., 1656-7, he executed a deed in full, Harrington having built upon and improved it. Although Harrington lived to great a age, and acquired numerous and large possessions, it is probable that this was his permanent residence, and that it passed to his youngest son, Edward, and afterwards to his grandson Capt. Edward Harrington.
The next west of Harrington, was the 6 A. homestall of Thomas Flagg, and it was probably his permanent residence. He was not the original grantee of it, nor do the records show to whom it was granted.
Next west of Flagg was the 6 A. lot granted to John Sherman, and bought by E. How. There is some obscurity in regard to the lots between those of Sherman and Coolidge, and we cannot make the map, at this point, satisfactory. Sherman's lot was bounded W. by Jonas Eaton, a grantee of 3 A. in the Town Plot. Wid. Frances Onge was grantee of 6 A. in the Town Plot, and her son, Simon, was afterwards owner of 6 A., which was bounded E. by Jonas Eaton, W. by William Seger [? Hager]. This is the only mention of Wm. Seger in the records. The 6 A. lot of J. Coolidge was bounded E. by Jonas Eaton. As this lot is not in the summary of Coolidge's grants and possessions, in 1644, perhaps it will be discovered that he sold it to William Hager, who married and settled in Watertown about this time, and that this was the ancient Hager residence.
Next west of this, was the 6 A. lot, with a pond of I acre, granted to Abraham Browne. He probably sold the land, or a part of it, to Edmund Blois.
The 21 A. homestall of Samuel Freeman, where he resided, was at the S. W. corner of Lexington and Warren Streets. It was made up of the 6 A. granted to Samuel Hosier, 6 A. granted to Charles Chadwick, 6 A., grantee not ascertained (probably John Thomson, who sold it to W. Clarke, and by Clarke sold to Freeman), and 3 A. of the 9 A. lot granted to Richard Browne. This lot of R. B. is described as bounded E. by William Clarke. This homestall of S. Freeman passed to his son Henry. The other 6 A. granted to R. Browne, was purchased by Richard Gale, and was his residence. N.B. On the map, C. C.'s lot should be next to S. H.
Next west, was the 12 A. homestall of Joseph Bemis, where he resided permanently. It was made up of the 6 A. lot granted to John Firmin, and the 6 A. lot granted to Simon Stone. It passed to his son John, and probably to his grandson Jonathan.
Next west of Bemis, was the 6 A. lot granted to Nicholas Busby; and next west of this was the 6 A. lot granted to Isaac Mixer. Next west of Mixer, and bounded W. by the highway, was the 6 A. lot granted to Daniel Peirce, and purchased by John Prescott.
The 6 A. lot at the N. W. corner of Lexington and Warren Streets, was granted to John Dogget, and from him passed to Richard Wait, who resided there. The next west was the 6 A. lot granted to John Woolcott or his widow Winifred, from whom it passed to Edmund White, and afterwards to Samuel Thatcher. The next west was the 6 A. lot granted Edmund James, from whom it passed to Nicholas Theale, who resided there; (?) sold by George Parkhurst to R. Wait, Ap. 6, 1652. Next west, was the 6 A. granted to R. Kemball, sold to Richard Beach. Next west was a lot of George Parkhurst, the size and the grantee of it not ascertained. Dec. 3, 1649, Joseph Underwood sold it to John Bigelow. The next west was the 6 A. lot granted to Henry Bright, Jr., from whom it passed to John Bigelow. This was the first and the permanent residence of the ancestor of all the Bigelows in this country. Next west was the 6 A. homestall of Miles Ives, grantee not ascertained. This is supposed to have been his permanent residence. The next west, bounded on the W. by the highway, was the 6 A. lot granted to Edward Garfield. It was his residence.
The 6 A. lot at the S. W. corner of Lexington and Belmont Streets, is in the list of grants to John Whitney. It was probably granted after the other lots in the Town Plot had been granted, and the list made out and recorded, as his name is not on that list, and the adjoining lot was described as bounded E. by the Common. This lot passed to his son, John Whitney, Jr., who did not reside upon it, but upon a lot on the E. side of Lexington St., adjoining the land of Mr. Phillips. The next west was the 6 A. homestall of Bartholomew Pierson. He was not the grantee, and it is conjectured that it was a grant to J. Stowers. Pierson sold this lot with a house to Anthony Peirce, Oct. 7, 1655, for £28. About this time Pierson moved to Woburn. The next W. was the 6 A. lot granted to John Smith, Senior, and by him sold to John Peirce. The next W. was the 6 A. lot granted to W.Barsham. and by him sold to John Peirce. These two lots constituted the homestall, where it is supposed that he resided permanently. The next W. was the 6 A. granted to David Fiske, and was the homestall of William Parker. Next W. is the 6 A. lot granted to Richard Beers, passed to Richard Amler, where he resided, then called 7 A. The next W., bounded W. and N. by highway, was the 8 A. lot of upland granted to Thomas Arnold. Like that of John Whitney, it is not in the recorded list of lots granted in the Town Plot. This is the lot that was seized to pay the fine imposed for his not attending public worship. It was purchased by (?) Miles Ives.
The 2 A. lot of John Spring, at the corner of Orchard St. and Bowman's Lane, was his permanent residence, and passed to his son Henry.
Dec. 13, 1649, James Cutler, Sen., and Nathaniel Bowman, for £70, bought of Edward Goffe 200 A. in Cambridge, adjoining Rock Meadow, and near, or adjoining to Watertown [Waltham] line, payable in instalments of £10 annually, in goods; payments secured by mortgage. It was bounded E. by land of N. Bisco. Mar. 4, 1650-1, Cutler sold his share (100 A.) to Bowman for £39. It is probable that Cutler and Bowman moved from Watertown about this date. [See pp. 88 and 189.]
The 5 A. lot at the S. E. corner of Belmont St. and Bowman's Lane was the residence of John Bisco, in 1643. The 6 A. homestall lot of Benjamin Bullard, near the N. W. point of Fresh Pond, probably belonged to his father, Robert Bullard, whose wid., Anna, m. N. Theale. The 6 A. homestall, where N. Theale resided in 1644, in Bowman's Field, had probably belonged to R. Bullard. John Coolidge settled first on the Camb. line a little W. of Fresh Pond, and probably always resided there, Richard Kimball's residence was at the E. of Fresh Pond. That of Henry Kimball, Sen., was on his lot adjoining that of N. Bowman. Joseph Morse settled first on the S. side of Orchard St., and in 1640 exchanged it for the 18 A. lot, E. side of Pequusset Common.
The preceding explanations apply exclusively to what were called the Small Lots [§ 81], and they illustrate, in part, what was said in § 84 and § 85, about the multitude of lots and the frequent change of ownership. In further illustration of the multiplicity of lots, we would refer to the lots in the Great Dividends, in the Beaver Brook plowlands, the lieu of township lots, the lots in the West Pine and other meadows, and the Farms. [See pp. 1021-28.]
The changes of ownership were in many instances wholesale. All the lots granted to Gregory Stone, and his purchased homestall, were purchased for Thomas Boylston. The 7 lots granted to John Bachelor, and the 6 lots granted to Robert Tucke, were all purchased by Jeremiah Norcross. These were not all of N.'s purchases. All the lots of Peter Noyes were purchased of Bryan Pendleton. The numerous lots granted to Thomas Cakebread passed to John Grout. The numerous lots of Nicholas Knapp and of Robert Lockwood, were bought by B. Pendleton, after he returned from Sudbury, and by him they were sold to Robert Daniel. After his decease, they passed to his son Samuel Daniel, who sold to his brother-in-law, Thomas Fanning, what had been the homestalls of his father, of Robert Lockwood, and of Nicholas Knapp. All the lots held by Thomas Andrew$, were grants to Edmund James. All the lots which Thomas Philbrick retained until his removal to Hampton, were purchased by Isaac Sterne. John Ellet sold his house and 5 lots to Thomas Wincoll. Edward Lamb sold most of the lots granted to him,, to Charles Stearns. Most of the lands granted to John Simson passed to George Parkhurst, who married his widow, All the lots of John Firmin (with the exception of his first homestall in "the town," sold to Henry Bright, Jr., and his lot in the Town Plot, sold to Joseph Bemis), were by his heirs sold to Barnabas Farr, of Boston, and by Farr sold to Richard Bears. The 2 lots granted to Nathaniel Foote, were bought by Henry Cuttris, and by him sold to Jeremiah Norcross. The 4 lots granted to Robert Abbot, were sold to Roger Wellington. John Stowers sold to Thomas Hammond, at one time, a dwelling and 18 lots of land. He had previously sold some lots, and he still held a 130 A. farm. In addition to the lots granted to John Woolcot and his widow, he purchased the 5 lots of Philip Tabor, some, if not all, of the lots of Abraham Shaw, and one or more lots granted to John Tucker; and from his widow, Winifred, most of them passed to Edmund White, of London, and by David Yale, his attorney, they were sold to Samuel Thatcher. 8 lots were granted to John Gosse, and all of them that he retained until his decease, were by his heirs sold to Samuel Stratton. John Knight, from Sudbury, owned 15 lots in 1643, all obtained by purchase or exchange, except one farm of 287 A., ten of which lots he sold to Thomas Underwood, at the time Underwood moved from Dorchester to Watertown. The 9 lots granted to Henry Goldstone, and the 4 lots purchased by him, all, so far as ascertained, passed to his son-in-law, Dea. Henry Bright.
§ 27. In December, 1630, the Governor and assistants had repeated meetings, at different places, in order to select a site for a fortified town, and for the capital of the colony. At their last meeting, December 21, Governor Winthrop says, "We met again at Watertown, and there, upon view of a place a mile beneath the town, [i. e. the central point, or residence of the chief persons], all agreed it a fit place for a fortified town." The homestall of Sir Richard was situated on Charles River within that strip of territory which was taken from Watertown and annexed to Cambridge in 1754, and was about a mile from the site of Harvard College. Wood [New England's Prospect], whose distances are not exact, says Watertown was about half a mile westward from Newtown, and "this town" (the central or chief point of Watertown) was within half a mile of the Great Pond. Winthrop [i. p. 73] says, Watertown wear was "three miles above the town." Between the homestall of Sir Richard and the New Town [Camb.] line, there was only one small intervening lot (13 acres, belonging to Thomas Brigham), and this homestall was bounded on the northwest by a lot of Mr. Phillips, supposed to be the one upon which Sir Richard engaged (August 23, 1630) to build a house for Mr. Phillips. These lots of Sir Richard and Mr. Phillips were about three miles below the wear, half a mile south of Fresh Pond, and one mile from Newtown; and that point, or the immediate neighborhood, was undoubtedly what was meant by "the town."
§ 81. 1. Homestalls and home-lots. These were collectively called the Small Lots, and they comprised, or rather were scattered over, nearly the whole of the present territory of Watertown. There were within these limits a few tracts of land, of uncertain or unascertained extent and dimensions, called Commons, devoted to the common use or benefit. There was the meeting-house lot of 40 acres, sometimes called the Meeting-house Common. Neither its situation, boundaries, nor dimensions are mentioned in the records; but it is pretty clearly inferred, from a collation of the references in the descriptions of grants and possessions, that it was situated between School St. on the West; Belmont St. on the North, and Mount Auburn St. on the S. East. "Fifteen acres of upland upon the Meeting-house Common were granted to" Rev. George Phillips. Rev. John Sherman, was allowed to take the wood from a part of it. A part of it was ordered to be sold in 1667 to defray the expense of rebuilding the Mill Bridge. Pequusset Common is the one most frequently mentioned in the records, and it is the one afterwards sometimes called King's Common. It was bounded N. by Cambridge Line; W. by the Great Dividends; S. and E. by the Small Lots. Pequusset Common was distinct from Pequusset Meadow. The latter was a narrow strip of land, a little distance east of Lexington Street, and running south from that Common towards Belmont Street. This meadow was granted in small lots to several proprietors, before the order was passed (May 21, 1638), for appropriating Pequusset Common to the general use. [See p. 996.] The common on the west side of the Great Pond was probably in Waltham. Other lots were granted to aid objects Of general interest, viz., the wear and the mill. A small lot on the river was reserved for a public landing.
§ 84. There was an early map or plan of Watertown in the possession of the late Abner Sanderson, Esq., of Waltham. It was lent to a gentleman engaged in historical investigations, and unfortunately destroyed by a conflagration in Boston, in 1825, and no copy of it left. It was probably made by Abraham Browne, as it was done in 1640, while he was the town surveyor. This loss leaves it very difficult to determine the exact positions, where some of the first planters settled. In order to do this, it would be necessary to construct a plan of the town from the schedules of possessions. These give the number of acres in each lot with its surroundings; but their dimensions are not given, and it is evident that they were very irregular. According to the descriptions, the roads and the boundaries of lots nearly all ran parallel with the lines of latitude and longitude, yet, these seem to be the only directions in which they did not run. Some highway, road, or lane, is generally given as a boundary, but it is seldom named, and when named, not always clearly identified at this time ; for, since that time, other roads have been laid out, and some of the old ones vacated or changed. In laying out the lots and roads, the surveyor seems to have made no use of chain or compass.
§ 85. It is probable that, of the homestalls and homelots, allotted to the first planters, few or none exceeded 16 A. They varied from this to one acre, and their average was probably about 5 or 6 Acres. In the schedules of possessions there are several much larger homestalls, a few of which were grants; but it is very doubtful whether any of them were made at first. William Jennison had a homestall of 50 A. granted him; but, as in the case of Abraham Browne, John Warren, Isaac Sterne, Ephraim Child, W. Hammond, and others, he had at first a smaller lot granted him nearer to the river, and the large lot was probably a subsequent grant. It is certain that most of the homestalls exceeding 16 A. were not grants to the possessors, and that very few of the holders of large homestalls were first planters. The records show that, in some instances, they were acquired by purchase, and made up of several small lots, obtained of grantees, who migrated early to other plantations; as in the case of Jeremiah Norcross, whose homestall of 26 A. was composed of 4 lots, purchased of different persons. John Benjamin, who moved from New Town to Watertown about 1637, had a homestall of 60 A., probably obtained and made up in the same manner, as no part of it was granted to him. In some instances they were obtained partly by grant and partly by purchase, as in the case of Simon Stone, who had a homestall of 50 A., of which only 12 A. were granted, and the rest purchased of several different persons. The diminutive size and great number of the small lots led to frequent early changes in proprietorship, and this circumstance enhances very much the difficulty, already referred to, of determining the spots, where the primitive settlers first planted.*
* Since this paragraph was written, notwithstanding the discouragement presented, we have succeeded in determining the localities, or relative position, of a great portion of the homestalls, as originally granted. We hope to have the results of this investigation sufficiently matured to be presented in Appendix III.
§ 91. 3d Beaver Brook Plowlands. The next general grant of land was that of the Beaver Brook Plowland, partly meadow, and partly upland, the record of which is as follows: "1636 [36-7], Feb. 28. A grant of plowlands at Beaver Brook Plains, divided and lotted out by the freemen to all the Townsmen then inhabiting, being 106 in number, allowing one acre for a person, and likewise for cattle valued at £20 the head; beginning next the Small Lots beyond the wear, and bounded with the Great [Dividend] Lots on the north side, and Charles River on the South, divided by a cartway in the midst; the first lot to begin next the river, the second on the north side of the cartway, and to be laid out successively until the lots are ended." It is probable that the grant was made in Sept., 1636, when a committee was appointed to "devise to every man his propriety of Meadow and Upland that is plowable, and the rest to lie common;" and that the date of the record (Feb. 28, 1636-7), was the time when the allotments and schedules were completed. The lands then granted amounted to 741 acres, of which about 285 A. were at the east of Beaver Brook, and were designated, "lots in the Hither Plain," sometimes called the Little Plain. The rest of the lots were situated west of Beaver Brook, and were called the "lots in the Further Plain," sometimes called the Great Plain.
§ 94. In the grant of the Beaver Brook Plowlands, they are described as "beginning next the small lots beyond the wear." The following is the order of the lots) with the names of the grantees, between Sudbury Road on the north and the way betwixt lots (Pleasant St.) on the south, beginning at the way to the Little Plain (Howard St.). 1st. The homestall and adjoining homelots of Abraham Browne, 40 A. 2d. A lot of 12 A. granted to Edward How, and by his heirs sold to Robert Harrington, from whom it passed to his son Edward, and after probably to his grandson Edward. 3d. A 40 A. lot granted to Rev. George Phillips, and by his heirs sold to Edward Garfield, about 1650. This was bounded on the west by the Driftway, which was the boundary between the Small Lots and the Beaver Brook Plowlands. In the Inventory of E. Garfield, this lot is described as "on the Little Plain, near Sudbury Road," and it was then (1672), apprized at £60. In late times it became the elegant residence of Governor Gore, and it now belongs to J. S. Copley Greene, Esq. Immediately south of this lot of Mr. Phillips, and separated from it by the cartway betwixt lots, was a 20 A. lot of plowland, granted to Sir R. Saltonstall. It was bounded on the west by the first lot (John Whitney's) in the Beaver Brook Plowlands, and his son Samuel afterwards sold it to Whitney. As this lot was bounded W. by the land of Whitney, it appears that the Driftway did not extend to the river. Situated E. and S. E. of this lot of Sir Richard, between the river and Pleasant Street, were lots belonging to John Knight, Edward How, Joseph Morse, Richard Woodward, and Abraham Browne.
§ 98. There has been much perplexity in ascertaining, or even conjecturing, where this reservation for a town plot was located; for there is nothing in the town records indicating its locality, boundaries, or dimensions. We have, however, after a careful collation and analysis of circumstantial data, arrived at a conclusion, which is satisfactory, if not clearly demonstrable, viz. : that it was that tract of land, bounded E. by Lexington St., S. by Sudbury Road (Main St.), N. by Belmont St., and W. by that continuation of Belmont St. (a part of which is now called Warren St.), where it turns to the south until it intersects Main Street. A road ran E. and W. through the middle of it, now called Warren Street. There was one range of lots on the south side of Belmont St.; one on the north, and another on the south side of Warren St., and a fourth range on the N. side of Main St., (Sudbury Road). As no penalty was attached to the order, requiring the grantees to build and settle on their lots, and forbidding their alienation to any except freemen, the order appears to have been entirely disregarded, as it is clear that very few, if any, of the grantees ever resided on them. The greatest part of the lots very soon passed into other hands, and in many instances to those who were never admitted freemen, or not until a long time afterwards.
§ 99. In the volume of town records containing the other schedules of possessions, is the following list of the grantees of the town plot. The name and lot of Rev. George Phillips is at the head of the list, although, as in the schedule of the Beaver Brook Plowlands [Sect. 93], this lot was not in the town plot, but on the east side of Lexington Street. At least three lots (6 A. to John Whitney, Sen.; 6 A. to John Sherman; and 8 A. to T. Arnold), were granted in this plot, after the following list was recorded. "1638, Ap. 9. A Division of land at the Town Plot, No. 40. George Phillips, 12 Acres; Robert Feake, 9 A.; Richard Browne, 9 A.; Daniel Patrick, 9 A.; Winifred Woolcott 6 A.; John Firmin, 6 A.; Samuel Hosier, 6 A.; Simon Stone, 6 A.; John Smith, 6 A.; Simon Eire, 6 A.; Edmund James, 6 A.; John Doggett; 6 A.; Nicholas Busby, 6 A.; Richard Beers, 6 A.; John Coolidge, 6 A.; Edmund Lewis, 6 A.; John Stowers, 6 A.; Barnaby Windes, 6 A.; Hugh Mason, 6 A.; Frances Onge, 6 A.; Samuel Freeman, 6 A.; Henry Bright, Jr., 6 A.; John Nicarson, 6 A.; David Fiske, 6 A.; Henry Dow, 6 A.; Gregory Taylor, 6 A.; John Tomson, 6 A.; Thomas Hastings, 6 A.; Daniel Pierce, 6 A.; Charles Chadwick, 6 A.; Edward How, 9 A.; John Eaton, 3 A.; John Smith, Jr., 3 A.; Isaac Mixer, 6 A.; Edmund Blois, 6 A.; John Baker, 3 A.; Abraham Browne, 6 A.; William Potter, 4 A.; Thomas Philbrick, 3 A ; Thomas Carter, - A." The reservation ordered for a township was to contain 200 A.; but the above grants, deducting that of Mr. Phillips, amounted to 238 Acres. To this, are to be added the lots subsequently granted to Whitney, Sherman, and Arnold.
THE WEAR AND FISHERY.
131. The fishery in Charles River, at Watertown, has always been deemed of considerable importance, but much more so in early, than in latter times. Johnson [Wond. Work. Prov.] says: "This town [Watertown], abounds with several sorts of fish at their seasons, bass, shad, alewives, frostfish, and smelts." Wood [New England's Prospect, 1633] says, "A little below this fall of waters, the inhabitants of Watertown have built a wear to catch fish, wherein they take great store of shads and alewives. In two tides they have gotten one hundred thousand fishes." In the spring of 1632, this wear was constructed by the permission and encouragement of Gov. Winthrop, but without an order, which could be granted only by the General Court. He gave this permission, because, if they had waited for a meeting and order of the Court, the season for fishing would have passed, before the wear could be constructed. At the next meeting of the Court, May 9, 1632, "It was ordered, that the town of Watertown shall have that privilege and interest in the wear they have built, up Charles River, according as the Court hereafter shall think meet to confirm unto them." On the 3d of Sept., 1634, the Court "Ordered, that no man shall fish with a net nearer the wear at Watertown, than the further part of the island in the river, and there also, never to cross the river wholly with any net, except it be at high water or after." Notwithstanding the reasonableness, almost the necessity of the action of the Governor, and the early sanction of the Court, that permission of Governor Winthrop was, not long afterwards, one of the points of accusation brought against him by Dudley, the disaffected and unfriendly deputy Governor.
§ 132. It is not known who took the lead in the construction of the wear, but it is not improbable that it was the energetic and enterprising Mr. John Oldham, whose "house near the wear at Watertown," was burned down in August of that year (1632). Winthrop, [I., p. 87.]
At a town meeting (of the freemen), in Jan., 1635-6, it was "agreed, that there shall be four rods in breadth on each side of the river, and in length as far as need shall require, laid [out] to the use of the wear, so it may not be prejudicial to the Water Mill. Also, one hundred and fifty acres of ground to the wear upon the other side of the river, to be laid out in a convenient place."
§ 133. The orders of the Court, just quoted, imply that the wear was built by or for the town, and was public property. If so, it not long afterwards became private property, and was held in shares. The 150 acres granted by the town, passed with the wear to Mr. Mayhew, and it was confirmed to him by an order of the Court, June 2, 1641, when it was "agreed, that Mr. Mayhew shall enjoy the 150 acres of land on the south side of Charles River, by Watertown wear."
§ 134. On May 29, 1639, Thomas Mayhew mortgaged to Matthew Cradock, of London, one-half of the Mill (which he had purchased of Mr. C.), and six shares in the Wear at Watertown, as security for £240. On Feb. 27, 1639-40, Mr. Mayhew conveyed to Gov. Dudley, for £90, the rent of his wear for the last four years, which is, by lease, let to Robert Lockwood, Isaac Sternes, and Henry Jackson, for six years ; also, the river-side and inheritance of the wear forever, subject to a certain mortgage [to Mr. Cradock]. On the 6th of March, 1643-4, for £59.10.2, Dudley sold to Edward How all right and income in the wears in Watertown, except £22.15.6, due from Isaac Stearns and Robert Lockwood. Elder Edward How, by his Will dated June 3, 1644, conveys to his heirs "the wears with all their privileges thereto belonging;" and they continued for many years in the possession of his two sons-in-law. Mar. 30, 1662, Nathaniel Treadway, with Sufferana (How), his wife, sold to Nathaniel Coolidge, all his right in the wears on Charles River, near the Corn Mill; and on May 26, 1663, John Stone, of Sudbury (the other son-in-law of Mr. How), sold to Nathaniel Coolidge, all his right in the river and fishing wears in Watertown, being the one-half thereof.
140. Neither the exact date nor the builder of the first mill in Watertown have been ascertained; but it was probably built, in 1634, by Edward How, at the joint expense of himself and Mr. Matthew Cradock. It was built at the first fall, at the head of tide-water, on Charles River, on "Mill Creek," which was a canal partly or wholly artificial, leaving the river at the head of the falls, where a stone dam was made across the river. It is probably the oldest artificial mill-race or canal in this country that has continued in uninterrupted use. The mill is not mentioned by Wood [New England's Prospect, 1633], who mentions the wear and the falls, where the mill was built; but it was built before August 19, 1635,* when Mr. Edward How sold one-half of it to Mr. Thomas Mayhew for £200, for which Mayhew gave a bond and mortgage for £400, with condition, that if said Mayhew pay said How £200, the bond to be void, else said How shall enter upon the moiety of the mill, as if be had never made sale thereof. Mr. Mayhew bought the other half of the mill of Mr. Cradock, through his agent, Nicholas Davison, and on the 29th May, 1639 (perhaps the day of purchase), mortgaged this half of the mill, with six shares of the wear, to Mr. Cradock, as surety for £240. On the 18th April, 1640, Mr. Mayhew, for £400, sold to Thomas Dudley, Deputy-Governor, one mill, "bought of Edward How, Elder of the Church of Watertown," and of N. Davison, agent of Mr. Cradock of London, subject to the mortgage to Mr. Cradock. This mortgage to Mr. Cradock was redeemed by Mr. Dudley on or before Mar. 7, 1643-4. No evidence has been discovered of the redemption of that mortgage of Mayhew to How, and that bond of Mayhew was one of the items in the Inventory of Mr. How, who died in the summer of 1644. From this statement of the facts, it is not strange that Mr. How should urge his title to the mill with pertinacity; and notwithstanding Winthrop's statement [II. p. 50], which seems imbued with partiality or personal pique,** there is reason to surmise that the official influence, and domineering disposition of his antagonist, gave a shape to the decision of the Court. Gov. Dudley died July 31, 1653; the next September a petition was presented to the General Court, by his executors, requesting that the legatees, to whom "Mr. Dudley gave Watertown Mill, have power to dispose of it for the use of the heirs;" which petition was granted. The greater portion of the mill was probably purchased about this time by Mr. William Paine, first of Watertown, afterwards of Ipswich and Boston. His son, John Paine, of Boston, on the 20th Jan., 1663, conveyed the mill as security to Samuel Appleton, of Ipswich, who had married Hannah, the only daughter of William Paine. [See Paine, p. 384, and also Mid. Deeds, III. 51.] On the lst Sept., 1676, Samuel Appleton, on behalf of his dr. Judith, sued Caleb Church for the possession of five-sixths of the corn-mill in Watertown. It appears by the Will and Inventory of Thomas Dudley, Jr., a grandson of the Governor, that his share of the mill, "my grandfather Dudley gave me," appraised at £40, had not been sold in Nov., 1655, but by the will was directed to be sold. Mr. Thomas Danforth was one of the executors, and probably bought this share, which may have been that one-sixth which did not come into the possession of Mr. William Paine and his heirs. Hon. Thomas Danforth and others, who had become proprietors of the mill previous to Nov. 30, 1686, when they had erected a fulling-mill adjoining to the corn-mill, asked and obtained liberty of the town to build a house on the N. side of the [mill-] stream. Oct. 6, 1710, Mary, daughter of Hon. Thomas Danforth (wife, first of Solomon Phipps, Jr., and afterwards of Thomas Brown of Sudbury), by deed conveyed to her daughters, Sarah and Abial, All her rights in the corn-mills and fulling-mills on Charles River in Watertown. [See p. 197, note.] The subsequent line of proprietors and occupiers of the mills has not been ascertained ; but they were for many years occupied by Stephen Cook, Jr., and afterwards by David Learned. In 1653, the mill was rated at £140 for the support of the ministry.
* A grant of Iand was made to the mill in Jan. 1634-5.
** The lead, which Watertown people had taken in resisting Gov. Winthrop's policy of taxation without representation; and their adoption of strict Independency, in opposition to his politico-ecclesiastical policy, produced a prejudice against them, in his mind, which on several occasions he ill conceals.
§ 179. In 1692, an exciting controversy arose in the town about the location of the meeting-house, which then stood not far from the old graveyard.
At a town meeting Nov. 18, 1692, in order to determine the location of the meeting-house, it was ordered that "those who are of the mind to build and set up a meeting-house on the hill between the Pound and Widow Whitney's, let them follow Robert Harrington, Sen.; those that are of the mind to build it where it is, let them follow Mr. Norcross," and, "in case we can't agree among ourselves, we will refer it to men." It appears that they did not agree, and on the 7th of December, the selectmen appointed Robert Harrington, Daniel Warren, Sen., and Isaac Mixer, Sen., to petition Gov. Phipps and the Council concerning the meeting-house. A town meeting, summoned by the Council, was held Dec. 27, 1692, at which were present the Lieut. Governor, Major Phillips, Esq., Mr. Suel [Samuel Sewall], Esq., Capt. Lines [Lynde], Esq. It was then voted 1st, "that matters of difference in Watertown, relating to the settling a minister and the placing the meeting-house is referred to a committee." 2d, "that we do pray the Governor and Council to choose a committee, and that we will set down by the determination of that committee in reference to matters aforesaid." 3d, "that we do so desire and appoint Mr. William Bond, and Lieut. Benjamin Garfield, to apply themselves to the Governor and Council for the obtaining a committee for the ends above said." The selectmen received notice, Mar. 9, 1692-3, of a meeting to be held at Capt. Sewell's, in Boston, the next Thursday at 9 A. M., "concerning the meeting-house," which meeting was adjourned to the 23d. The following is the "return" of the Council, dated Boston, May 18, 1693. "Whereas, there has been of a longtime, even ever since the days of your blessed pastor Phillips, an earnest contending about the place of meeting for the public worship of God. Having heard and duly weighed the allegations of both parties, in your public meeting, and considering the remoteness of the most of your inhabitants, from the place where the meeting-house now stands. Our advice and determination in that matter is, that within the space of four years next coming, there be a meeting-house erected in your town on a knoll of ground lying between the house of Widow Stearns, and Whitney's Hill; to be the place of meeting to worship God for the whole town. And if in the mean time the minister see cause to dwell in the house where the Reverend Mr. John Baily dwell'd, the town pay rent to the proprietors, as hath been accustomed since its building. So praying to unite your hearts in his fear, we take leave, who are your truly loving friends and brethren."
[Signed], "Wm. Stoughton, John Phillips, Jas. Russell, Sam. Sewall, Joseph Lynde." [Addressed], "To our Brethren and Neighbors of Watertown."