Here to return to
Lexington is reached from Boston by electric car via Arlington, or by train, Boston & Maine Railroad, North Station. Concord is also reached by both electric and steam cars. To include both places in a single trip there is a choice of routes: one wholly by trolley car, another partly by trolley and partly by steam car (from Lexington to Concord), a third wholly by train. The route wholly by electrics is by an Arlington Heights car, passing along Massachusetts Avenue through Cambridge and Arlington, to the Lexington town line; thence by a Boston and Lexington electric car, through East Lexington to Lexington Center, by the historic green; thence to Concord by way of Bedford, finishing in the main square of the town. To reach Concord directly from Boston the usual and by far the quickest way is to take the steam railroad. There are two routes, — one by the Fitchburg Division of the Boston & Maine, the other by the Southern Division, the latter being the line which comes through Lexington.
The trolley-car route to Lexington passes numerous historic points in Arlington (the early Menotomy, later West Cambridge), all associated with the affair of the 19th of April, 1775. Before the town line is reached the visitor must needs be on the lookout for tablets. In North Cambridge (Cambridge station on the near-by railroad) is the first one. This stands just above the church beyond “Porter’s,” the old hotel, a relic of past days. It marks a point where four Americans were killed by British soldiers on the retreat. Two miles and more beyond, after a brick car house is passed and the railroad crossed, the next tab let may be seen, on the right side of the road. This marks the site of the Black Horse Tavern, where three members of the Committee of Safety of 1775 — Colonel Azor Orne, Colonel Jeremiah Lee, and Elbridge Gerry of Marblehead — were spending the night of the 18th of April, and barely escaped capture by the British soldiers on the march out to Lexington and Concord.
Nearing the town center, the Arlington House is marked, “Here stood Cooper’s Tavern, in which Jabez Wyman and Jason Winship were killed by the British, April 19, 1775.” A little way beyond this tavern, at the right, is Mystic Street, down which, a hundred yards from the avenue, is a tablet inscribed with this marvelous tale: “Near this spot Samuel Whittemore, then eighty years old, killed three British soldiers April 19, 1775. He was shot, bayonetted, beaten, and left for dead, but recovered and lived to be ninety-eight years of age.” At the junction of the avenue and Pleasant Street, in front of the church green, a tablet records that “at this spot on April ,9th, 1775, the old men of Menotomy captured a convoy of English soldiers with supplies, on its way to join the British at Lexington.” Behind the church on Pleasant Street is the old burying ground where a number who fell in the fight during the British retreat were buried. Farther down Pleasant Street, on the borders of fair Spy Pond, is the home of John T. Trowbridge, author and poet.. On the avenue again, above the church green, is the fine Robbins Memorial Library, and a little beyond this, near the corner of Jason Street, another tablet appears, identifying the “site of the house of Jason Russell, where he and eleven others were captured, disarmed and killed by the retreating British.” Farther along on the plain near ing Arlington Heights are two or three old houses which suffered damage in the fight. At the top of the incline the “Foot of the Rocks,” as this point was called at the time of the Revolution, is reached. To the left a road leads up to “the Heights,” from which a beautiful view is to be had.
The car stables close to the Lexington line are only a little way beyond. Here the change is made to the Lexington car a few steps above.
East Lexington, or the East Village as it used to be called, is now a tranquil hamlet, with an old-fashioned store or two, some comfortable, looking houses along the main avenue, a few memorials of the British invasion, and a little church in which Emerson occasionally preached (the octagonal structure on the right side of the avenue, known as the Follen Church, from Charles Follen, the German scholar, its minister, who was lost in the burning of the steamer Lexington on Long Island Sound in 1840). At the junction of the avenue and Pleasant Street is a tablet set up beside a drinking fount, which marks the point where the first armed man of the Revolution was taken, — only to rearm him self and fight later on Lexington Green. He was Benjamin Wellington, a minuteman. A short distance beyond is a plain white house, on the right side, upon which is a tablet identifying it as the “home of Jonathan Harrington, the last survivor of the Battle of Lexington.” This, how ever, was not the place where Jonathan lived at the time of the fight. He was a boy then (a fifer to the minutemen) and lived with his father, another Jonathan Harrington, whose house also is standing, a little farther on, at the corner of Maple Street. In the sidewalk in front of the latter house is one of the largest elms in New England. One day in 1753 the elder Jonathan drove an ox team to Salem, and on the way back he pulled up an elm shoot to brush the flies off the oxen. When he got home he set it out, and this great tree has grown from it.
Lexington. After passing the rural station of Munroe’s, on the rail road, the first object of interest, and a worthy one, is Munroe’s Tavern, standing on an elm-shaded knoll at the left of the avenue. On its face is a tablet thus inscribed: “Earl Percy’s headquarters and hospital, April 19, 1775. The Munroe Tavern built 1695.” Percy occupied the room on the left of the entrance door, and this was made the temporary hospital. The room on the right was the taproom, where the soldiers were freely supplied with liquor.
When the retreat began some of the soldiers discharged their guns, killing John Raymond, who had served them and who was trying to escape through a back door. A bullet hole made by one of the British musket balls is still seen in the ceiling of this room. The depart ing soldiers also started a fire in the tavern, but it was put out. In the southeast part of the second story was the tavern dining room, and here Washington dined in November, 1789, when on his last journey through New England. This house was much larger then, with spreading outbuildings. Abandoned as a tavern years ago, it has been preserved as a memorial of the Revolution.
As the town center is approached historic sites multiply. The hill on the left is marked as the point where one of the British fieldpieces was planted to command the village and its approaches. Near it, we are informed by the same tablet, “several buildings were buried.” A little way beyond Bloomfield Street, at the left, is about the point where Percy met Smith’s retreating force, and at the right, in front of the High School, a granite cannon marks the spot where he planted a field piece to cover the retreat.
Arrived at Lexington Green, — the Common where the “battle” occurred, — the visitor will find every point of importance designated by a monument or tablet. Thus at the lower end is the stone pulpit marking the site of the first three meetinghouses, a “spot identified with the town’s history for one hundred and fifty years.” Near by is a bronze statue of a yeoman with gun in hand standing on a heap of rocks. Where the minutemen were lined up is indicated by a bowlder inscribed with the words of Captain Parker: “Stand your ground. Don’t fire unless fired upon, but if they mean to have a war, let it begin here.” On the west side of the ground is the old stone monument, now in a beautiful mantle of ivy, which the State erected in 1799, and for which the patriot minister of Lexington, Jonas Clarke, wrote the oratorical inscription. In a stone vault back of it are deposited the remains of those who fell in the engagement, which were removed to this place from their common grave in the village burying ground. With the modern houses about the green are three which were standing at the time of the battle. On the north side is a house in an old garden which was the Buckman Tavern, “a rendezvous of the minutemen, a mark for British bullets,” as the tablet on its face states. On the south side a plain white house bears the legend, “A witness of the battle.” On the west side, at the corner of Bedford Street, is a house in which lived Jonathan Harrington, who, “wounded on the Common” in the engagement, “dragged himself to the door and died at his wife’s feet.” A few steps from the Unitarian Church, on this side, is a lane with a bowlder at its corner marked “Ye Old Burying, Ground 169o.” Among the many quaintly inscribed gravestones here are the tombs of the ministers John Hancock, grandfather of Governor John Hancock, and Jonas Clarke, and monuments to Captain Parker of the minutemen and Governor William Eustis, who was a student with General Joseph Warren and served as a surgeon at Bunker Hill and through the war. He was governor of the State in 1823-1825.
On Hancock Street is the historic Hancock-Clarke house (moved from its original site on the opposite side of the way), the home of the ministers, first Hancock and then Clarke. Here John Hancock and Samuel Adams were stopping the night before the battle, and were roused at midnight from their sleep by Paul Revere, when they were taken by their guard to Captain James Reed’s in Burlington. The venerable house is now a museum of Revolutionary relics. In the Town Hall, below the green, are the Memorial Hall and Carey Public Library, in which is a larger museum of relics, with numerous portraits, old prints, and Major Pitcairn’s pistols, captured during the retreat. Here are statues of The Minuteman of ‘75; The Union Soldier; John Hancock, by Thomas R. Gould; and Samuel Adams, by Martin Milmore. In the public hall above is a fine painting of the Battle of Lexington by Henry Sandham.
Waltham Street, opening directly opposite the Town Hall, leads toward the birthplace of Theodore Parker, in Spring Street, about two miles distant.
Concord. The heart of the town is the square in the center, where the most conspicuous object is the
Unitarian Church, destroyed by fire in 1900, and wisely rebuilt on the old simple and dignified lines. This was the site of a still older meeting house where the Provincial Congress sat. Next to it is the
Wright Tavern, dating from 1747. Here Major Pitcairn drank his toddy on the day of the fight.
Taking the Lexington road from the square we pass, first, the
Concord Antiquarian Society’s house, full of relics and old furniture, and, a little farther, on a road diverging to the right,
Hillside Burying Ground. Here are historic graves, including those of Emerson’s grandfather and Major John Buttrick, who led the fight at the Old North Bridge; and some unique epitaphs, especially that of John Jack, the slave. The church near this burying ground is now a Catholic church, and turning the corner of the street on which it stands, we soon come to
House of the First Minister. If on our way back we turn to the right after crossing the railroad tracks, and then to the left, we shall pass the site of the house in which Peter Bulkeley, the first Concord minister, lived, — he who made the bargain with the Indians for the land of Con cord, which secured to the colonists its “peaceful possession.” This is on Lowell Street, and a few steps farther and facing the square, our starting point, is a low wooden block, a part of which was one of the storehouses sacked by the British.
Continuing through the square and turning to the right, the first house beyond the very pretty bank building is one a part of which is said to have been the original blockhouse built by the first settlers as a defense against the Indians. Beyond, on the left, at the junction of the two roads, is the
Concord Public Library. Here are some interesting busts and pictures, and a collection — astonishingly large — of books written by residents of Concord.
Homes of the Hoar Family. Continuing on the main street, the fourth house from the blockhouse was the home of Samuel Hoar, the first of the name. Here were born his eminent sons, the late Judge Hoar and Senator Hoar. The next house was the home of the late Samuel Hoar, the eldest son of Judge Hoar; and the next beyond that is the home of the widow of Sherman Hoar, Judge Hoar’s youngest son. On the left, near the corner of Thoreau Street and secluded by a hedge of trees, is the
Thoreau House. Here Thoreau lived during the last twelve years of his life, and here he died of consumption. The Alcott family also lived in this house for several years. The site of Thoreau’s hut by Walden Pond is marked by a cairn made by visitors. Still continuing on the main street and bearing to the right, we find, just beyond the little stone Episcopal church which stands on the left,
The Home of Frank B. Sanborn. Here, in what is perhaps the prettiest house in Concord, and close to the river, lives Frank Sanborn, the last of the men who gave Concord a world-wide reputation, and famous as an antislavery man, as schoolmaster, lecturer, and author. A mile or more beyond the Sanborn house is
The Concord Reformatory. This institution, intended for younger and the less hardened criminals, is a large one, and is believed to be a model of its kind.
Concord Schools. Concord has always been remarkable for its schools; and besides its public schools it contains an Episcopal boarding school, with grounds sloping to the river, not far from the Sanborn house, and also a Unitarian boarding school, situated on the road to Lowell, about three miles beyond the village.
of Edward W. Emerson. On the same road, a mile or so beyond the
village, is the home of Emerson’s only son, Dr. Edward W. Emerson,
a physician and artist, and the author of that most valuable and
interesting book, “Emerson in Concord.”
Lynn (about 12 miles distant from Boston) can be reached in twenty minutes by steam railroad (Boston & Maine, Eastern Division, from the North Station) or by the Boston, Revere Beach & Lynn Railroad, a longer route but running closer to the sea, which begins with a short trip in a ferryboat, taken at Rowe’s Wharf, Atlantic Avenue (a station of the elevated railway close by). If time can be spared, one may journey pleasantly to Lynn in Boston and Northern electric cars, taken in the Subway at the Scollay Square station, and running through the Charlestown District (past the Navy Yard), Chelsea, Revere, and thence straight across the broad Saugus marshes with their numerous inlets, and with the ocean in sight on the extreme right. We reach first
West Lynn. The works of the General Electric Company and numerous shoe factories are here. A mile or so beyond is Lynn proper, a great shoe city. At Central Square electric cars may be taken for trips in various directions, especially to the Lynn Woods, the beautiful reservation of about two thousand acres. From Central Square, also, “barges” (a kind of long-drawn bus) run to the aristocratic summer resort of
Nahant (“cold roast Boston”), the oldest of eastern summer resorts, occupying a rocky promontory. On the extreme point is the summer home of Henry Cabot Lodge. There is also good sea bathing here, cold as ice water. To the northeast is Egg Rock with its lighthouse, showing a fixed red light. Returning to Lynn, an electric may be taken, if one desires, to
Saugus. Here are the Boardman houses, so called, the homes of minutemen in 1776, and “Appleton’s pulpit,” a huge rock, from which in September, 1687, Major Samuel Appleton of Ipswich harangued the people in favor of resistance to Andros. Here also is the site of the first iron mine and foundry in the Colony.
Returning again to Lynn, we may take an electric car for Salem via. Swampscott and Marblehead, — a pleasant route passing many summer homes and traversing the Lynn Shore Reservation of the Metropolitan Parks System, which at its northern end joins King’s Beach in Swampscott. Passing Beach Bluff and Clifton Heights, we come to
Marblehead, the quaint, irregular town with crooked streets full of old-time suggestions. Barges or a steam ferry may be taken here to Marblehead Neck, the site of a summer hotel and of the clubhouses of the Eastern and Corinthian Yacht Clubs. At the north end of the town is Fort Sewall, and various islands are in sight, notably “Misery” island, which is devoted by a club to sports and merriment. Features within easy walks are the old Town Hall with memories of the Revolution; the birthplace of Elbridge Gerry; remnant of the historic Jeremiah Lee mansion; the home and the tomb of General John Glover, whose statue is in Boston (see page 78); St. Michael’s, the oldest Episcopal church now standing in New England; the “Old Floyd Ireson” house; birthplace of “Moll Pitcher,” the “fortune teller of Lynn”; and the well of the “Fountain Inn,” the old tavern where began the romance of Agnes Surriage. From Marblehead we may go by electric car or by steam railroad — or one might have gone directly from Boston by the Boston & Maine (North Station) — to
Salem, once the chief port of New England. Here are many stately, reposeful old houses: the Custom House, in which Hawthorne was employed; the County Jail and Court House, in which many relics of the witchcraft persecution are preserved; Gallows Hill, where the condemned were hung; the Roger Williams house; the house on Federal Street in which Lafayette was entertained in 1784 and Washington in 1789; Hawthorne’s birthplace on Union Street, and various Hawthorne homes and landmarks; and the Pickering mansion, built in 1649. Here also are the Essex Institute and the Peabody Academy of Science, with their interesting collections of documents, relics, and curiosities, many of them redolent of the sea and foreign commerce.
Near-by towns are
Danvers, the home of General Israel Putnam, and at one time of Whittier. Here stands the fine old Hooper or Collins house, one of the best of Provincial mansions remaining, which General Gage used as his headquarters in the summer of 1774; and not far away is the Colonial farmhouse once occupied by Rebecca Nourse, the good house wife and kind neighbor who was executed for witchcraft.
From Salem electric cars run through Beverly to the tip end of Cape Ann; but from Beverly they take an inland course through the towns of Wenham, Hamilton, Essex, and West Gloucester, whereas the Gloucester branch of the steam railroad diverges to the east at Beverly and runs along the coast.
Beverly, settled in 1628, is now a shoe town in one part and a summer resort in the other parts. There are many wooded walks and drives here, and through Pride’s Crossing, Beverly Farms, West Manchester, and Manchester-by-the-Sea, noted for its “singing beach,” which gives forth a musical note as one walks over it. Here also is the Masconomo House, a famous summer hotel and the scene of open-air drama. Beyond are Magnolia and
Gloucester, the port from which the hardy fishermen sail to “The Banks” for cod and haddock, and to which many of them never return. Kipling’s “Captains Courageous” is the best guide book for Gloucester. At the extreme tip of Cape Ann is
Rockport, famous for its granite quarries, for its breakwater, built by the Federal government, and for its rocky scenery, much haunted by artists. The Isles of Shoals lie off the shore, and also Thatcher’s Island, with its twin lights.
Salem Itinerary. A day might well be devoted to Salem alone. The following itinerary, arranged for the visitor who has only an hour or two for its exploration, embraces the more important or most interesting places and sites.
The start is made from Town House Square (Washington Street at the crossing of Essex Street), a little way above the railroad station. On Washington Street, between the station and the square, on the west side of the railroad tunnel, is seen the
Joshua Ward House (No. 148), in which Washington passed a night when in Salem on his tour of New England in the autumn of 1789. He occupied the northeast chamber of the second story. This house is on the site of the dwelling of the high sheriff, George Corwin, the executioner of the witchcraft victims in 1692.
From Town House Square turn into Essex Street east. The Unitarian Church on the southeast corner occupies the site of the
First Meetinghouse, built prior to 1635 for the first church in Salem, formed in 1629. The present is the fourth in succession on this spot. The second one was the place of the examinations of the unhappy accused “witches” before the deputy governor and councilors from Boston in April, 1692. Beside the third one, “three rods west” of it, facing Essex Street, stood the
Town House in which in 1774 met the last General Assembly of the Province of Massachusetts Bay and the first Provincial Congress. A short distance up Essex Street, at No. 101, is the
Peabody Academy of Science (founded upon an endowment by George Peabody, the American banker in London), in the East India Marine Building. This contains the natural history and ethnological collections of the Essex Institute, and the nautical museum of the East India Marine Society (dating from 1799), with large additions, so arranged as to be educational rather than merely entertaining. On the opposite side of the street, at No. 134, is
Plummer Hall, the house of the Salem Athenæum (proprietary library, 24,000 volumes). This occupies the site of the house in which William H. Prescott, the historian, was born, and in which earlier lived Nathan Read, who invented and successfully sailed a paddle-wheel steamboat in 1789, some years before Fulton. In Colony days the Downing-Bradstreet house was here (the homestead lot being covered by this building and its neighbor, the Cadet Armory), first the home of the Puritan Emanuel Downing, whose son George Downing gave his name to Downing Street in London, and afterward that of Simon Bradstreet, the last colonial governor. Next above Plummer Hall is the
Essex Institute (No. 132), which comprises the Institute museum of historical objects, manuscripts, documents, and portraits, many and rare, the largest and most notable collection of its kind in the country; and the library, containing about 85,000 volumes, 302,000 pamphlets, and 700 volumes of manuscript. The visitor upon entering the Institute should procure a copy of its guide, which gives the details of the interesting exhibit here.
From Essex Street on the south side, just above these institutions, turn into Union Street, which leads to the
“Dr. Grimshawe” House (53 Charter Street) of “ Dr. Grimshawe’s Secret” and “The Dolliver Romance,” — the home of Dr. Nathaniel Peabody at the time of Hawthorne’s courtship of Sophia Amelia Peabody, who became his wife. “Dr. Grimshawe” House (53 Charter Street) of “Dr. Grimshawe’s Secret” and “The Dolliver Romance,” — the home of Dr. Nathaniel Peabody at the time of Hawthorne’s courtship of Sophia Amelia Peabody, who became his wife.
Derby Street, a short distance eastward, is the
From Turner Street cross Essex Street to Washington Square, with its stately houses of early nineteenth-century build, bordering the fine Common. On the north side, at the corner of Winter Street, is the
Story House, in which lived Judge Joseph Story, and where his son, William W. Story, the poet and sculptor, was born. On Mall Street, the second street from this side, the house No. 14 was
Hawthorne’s Mall Street House, where “The Scarlet Letter” was written. The study here was the front room in the third story.
From the west side of the square take Brown Street to St. Peter’s Street, thence pass to Federal Street, and so to Washington Street again by Town House Square. On Howard Street, north from Brown Street, is the Prescott Schoolhouse, said to be near the site of the place where Giles Corey, the last victim of the witchcraft frenzy, was pressed to death. On Federal Street is the site of the
Witchcraft Jail of 1692, covered by the house (No. 2) of the historical scholar, Abner C. Goodell. In this jail the persons accused of witch craft were confined, and from it the condemned were taken to the place of execution. Some of the timbers of the old jail are in the present house.
On Washington Street, just about where Federal Street enters, is the site of
Governor Endicott’s “faire house.” At the southern corner of Washington and Church streets stood the
Bishop House, where in 1692 lived Edward and Bridget Bishop, the latter the first witchcraft victim to be hanged. About opposite, on the west side of Washington Street, near Lynde Street, was the
House of Nicholas Noyes, minister of the first church at the time of the witchcraft delusion, and a firm believer in witchcraft. In the middle of the street here stood the
Court House of 1692, where the witchcraft trials were held. In the present Court House, at the end of Washington Street, facing Federal Street, are
Witchcraft Documents and Relics, in the custody of the clerk of the courts. Among these are the manuscript records of the testimony taken at the trials, the death warrant of Bridget Bishop, with Sheriff Corwin’s return thereon, recording that he had “caused her to be hanged by the neck till she was dead and buried,” the last words being crossed with a pen, apparently by the careful sheriff on second thought; and some of the “witch-pins” which were produced in court as among the instruments of torture used by the accused. Through Federal Street west and North Street north is reached the
North Bridge, in place of the bridge of Revolutionary days, where the “first armed resistance to the royal authority was made” on a Sunday in February, 1775, nearly two months before the affair at Lexington and Concord, when the advance of the British force, led by Lieutenant Colonel Leslie, to seize munitions of war, was arrested by the people of Salem. A spirited painting, “The Repulse of Leslie,” is in the Essex Institute.
Return through North Street to Essex Street west. On the corner of North Street (310 Essex Street) is the
Witch House, so called persistently without warrant beyond the tradition that some of the preliminary examinations of accused persons were held here, it being at the time of the delusion the dwelling of Judge Jonathan Corwin of the court. It is said to have been earlier the home of Roger Williams (in 1635-1636). It is the oldest house now standing in Salem.
Through Summer Street from Essex pass to Chestnut Street, lined with great elms and bordered by many fine old-time mansions. At No. 18 was
Hawthorne’s Chestnut Street House, which he occupied less than two years at the beginning of the surveyorship period. Little literary work appears to have been done here. At an earlier period John Pickering, the Greek lexicographer, lived in this house. On Broad Street, the next street south, at No. 18, is the many-gabled
Pickering House, dating back to 166o, the birthplace of Timothy Pickering, the distinguished soldier and statesman of the Revolution and member of Washington’s cabinet. Opposite, at the head of Broad Street, is a succession of school buildings, —
The Latin and High Schools, the former of which is one of the oldest in the country. Behind these buildings is the
The pleasant places along the South Shore between Quincy and Plymouth are brought into connection with Boston and with each other by electric-car systems, while the steam railroad traverses the country closest to the shore. The most direct electric-car route from Boston to Plymouth is through Quincy, Braintree, South Braintree, Holbrook, Brockton, Whitman, Hanson, Pembroke, the Plymouth Woods, West Duxbury, and Kingston. For this route the Neponset car should be taken at the Dudley Street terminal of the Elevated. The trunk line continues through Quincy to Brockton, where change is made to the Plymouth line. Other lines between Quincy and Brockton pass through Quincy Point, across Weymouth Fore River, through Weymouth, cross ing Weymouth Back River, Hingham, the Old Colony Woods, Nantasket, Hingham Center, Rockland, and Whitman, making connection at the latter place with the Plymouth line.
The pleasantest steam-railroad journey is by the South Shore route (New York, New Haven & Hartford system, South Station), passing through Quincy, Braintree, Weymouth, Hingham, Cohasset, Scituate, Marshfield, Duxbury, and Kingston, to Plymouth. The more direct route is by the main line through Braintree, South Weymouth, Abington, Whitman, Hanson, Halifax, and Kingston.
Hingham is one of the loveliest as well as one of the oldest towns in Massachusetts (settled in 1633). Its broad main street is shaded by magnificent elms. Its Old Ship Church, with pyramidal roof and belfry, dating from 1681, is the oldest existing meetinghouse in the country, and the quaintest. In the burying ground near it is the grave of John A. Andrew, the war governor, marked with a statue by Gould. Comfortable mansions of old type abound in the town. On a sightly hill is the home of John D. Long, governor, congressman, and Secretary of the Navy.
Cohasset, with irregular rocky coast, commanding a wide extent of ocean prospect, is the most favored place of the upper South Shore for summer seats. On and about its quite renowned Jerusalem Road are numerous extensive estates with elaborate houses and grounds. The Jerusalem Road to an unusual degree blends the charms of sea and shore.
Scituate also enjoys a beautiful ocean front, with fair beaches and a pretty harbor, protected by rocky cliffs. This town is the scene of Samuel Woodworth’s lyric, “The Old Oaken Bucket.” The old farm where the poet was born, which he immortalized in his song, was close by the present railroad station.
Marshfield was the country home of Daniel Webster. The Webster place is some distance from the railroad, eastward. The ride or walk to it is along a country hillside road, from which beautiful views occasionally disclose themselves. The place originally included a part of “Careswell,” the domain of the Plymouth Colony governor, Edward Winslow. Half a mile back from it is the tomb of Webster, on Burying Hill, a tranquil spot among fields and pastures overlooking the sea. Before the tomb, of rough-hewn granite, a plain marble slab displays the epitaph which Webster dictated the day before his death (1852). In this inclosure are monuments to early Pilgrim settlers.
Duxbury, the home of Elder Brewster, Miles Standish, and John and Priscilla Alden, is marked by the Standish Monument on Captain’s Hill, which looms up in the landscape, visible in a wide extent of country round about. Here is still standing the Standish Cottage, containing, it is believed, some of the materials of Standish’s own house, on the slope of Captain’s Hill; and in another part of the town is the ancient Alden homestead, on the original Alden farm, which can be seen from the windows of the railroad car. In about the middle of the village, in the oldest of its burying grounds, the supposed grave of Standish is marked by a monument, — a miniature fortress. Here are also graves of the Alden family, and possibly the grave of Elder Brewster.
Kingston, part of Plymouth till 1726, when setting up for itself it took its name of King’s town in honor of George the Second, on his birthday, is a typical Old Colony town, with a cheerful air of substantiality. It has a number of interesting landmarks, the most notable being the Major John Bradford house. Major John was the last of the Bradford family to possess the Bradford manuscript, now returned from its adventures and safely housed in the State House at Boston.
Above Pilgrim Hall is the County Court House, on the opposite side of the street, back from a green park, in which are precious documents of Pilgrim days. These are preserved in the office of the registry of deeds, and include papers bearing the signatures of Bradford and Standish, orders in Bradford’s handwriting, Standish’s will, the plan of the first allotment of lands, the plotting of the first street (t he present Leyden Street), and the original patent of 1629 granted to Bradford and his associates.
North Street, just above the Court House, to the right from Court Street, leads to Plymouth Rock, under the high granite canopy also designed by Billings. The side gates in the iron railing are open during the daytime so that visitors may step upon the stone. Close by is Pilgrim Wharf.
Cole’s Hill, where the first houses of the colonists were set up, and where their first burials were made in unmarked graves, rises from the opposite side of Water Street, reduced and rounded now from a ragged elevation to a symmetrical green mound. On the brow is a small park overlooking the harbor. Here at the head of Middle Street, which opens from Carver Street, a tablet marks the spot where the skeletons of two of the forty-four Pilgrims, nearly half the number, who died during the first hard winter, were found a century and a half after. These remains, with parts of five other skeletons, are entombed in the chamber of the canopy over the rock.
Leyden Street, next beyond Middle Street, the first and chief Pilgrim street, leads up to Burial Hill. Beyond its start at Carver Street the site of the first, or “common,” house is seen, marked conspicuously, on the left side.
Burial Hill rises abruptly from elm-shaded Town Square, a block from Main Street, practically a continuation of Court Street. Odd Fellows Building, on the corner of Main Street, marks the site of Governor Bradford’s house. The site of the first meetinghouse is supposed to be covered by the tower of this building. Burial Hill was the place of the first forts, which served also as meetinghouses, and these are marked by oval tablets in the burying ground. The spot where the watch house was erected in 1643 is similarly marked. The most important monuments here are over the graves of the Bradfords and of the Cushmans. The Governor Bradford obelisk occupies a point commanding the fullest view of the town below. Among other graves of note here are those of John Howland, the last survivor in Plymouth of the Mayflower passengers, and Adoniram Judson, the Plymouth minister, father of Adoniram Judson, the early missionary to Burma.
Watson’s Hill, where the first Indians appeared to the colonists, and whence came the friendly Samoset and after him Massasoit, lies to the southward of Burial Hill. And below is seen the Town Brook crossing, where Massasoit and his braves were met by the Puritan leaders, from which meeting resulted the famous “league of peace.”