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houses of the town, with one church and one school-house. The principal change that had taken place during the last thr;e-quarters of the eighteenth century had been a mere succession of generations, even the same names being very generally preserved.
In 1802 the town voted to build a new meeting-house, and chose Mr. Daniel Gould, Captain Daniel Green and Captain David Geary a committee for thai purpose. It was also voted to 'build the new meeting-house on the slope of the hill that is east of the Burying Hill Brook on the north side of the road." The committee were instructed to make all necessary provision for the entertainment and refreshment of the men to be employed, and a general invitation was extended to the inhabitants to be present at the raising, which occupied Wednesday, the 291h, and Thursday the 30th :!ay of June, 1803, and it wis dedicated on the 141h day of December, the same year. This was the second house of public worship erected in the town. This second house remained till the first Sabbath in January, 1840, when it was destroyed by fire which accidentally caught from a stove during morning service. The older residents will remember this edifice with the common about it, about one acre and a quarter on the north side of the road and threequarters of an acre on th; south side, which was used as the training field. The following description of the church has been left by Mr. Stevens:
"A. D., Isoi. The inhabitants of the town of Stoncham built this new Meeting House. Captain David Geary, Captain Daniel Green, Mr. Dainel Gould were the committee to build the meeting-house. They agreed with carpenters to do all the work lor seventeen hundred and eighty one dollars. I he house was raised the two last days in June, 1803, and finished about the middle of November following It is forty-six feet by fifty-six. The entry is ten feet making the body of the house square. It cost about 5500 dollars, including the common which cost about 130 dollars. The pews sold for several hundred dollars more than enough to pay for the house. The highest pew sold for 172 dollars. On the 14th of December we assembled in the new Meeting House to dedicate it to bod. There was a vast concourse of people. Rev. Mr. Sanborn, Kcv. Mr. Reynolds, Rcv. Mr. Nelson, and Mr. M— attended with myself- Mr. Reynolds read and made the first prayer. Mr. Sanborn made the conseerating prayer. 1 preached on Haggai, a, 7,'I will fill this house with glory,'and made the concluding prayer. The choir concluded with a dedicating anthem. Great order and solemnity marked all the proceedings. Onthe Sabbath before I preached a farewell sermon at the Old Meeting House, and the day after dedication the people took it down. I have written this that after generations might know about it, especially my successors in the ministry." (Signed), John H. Stevens.
In 1803 it was voted to request the Selectmen to lay out a new road from the road south of the Old Meeting House by the corner of Deacon Jabez Lynde's house straight to the New Meeting House." In 1805 William Street was'built, and the Medford and Andover Turnpike the next year. In 1806, also, Daniel Gould was elected to represent the town in the General Court.
In 1810 Spring Street was also laid out and was known as Captain Daniel Green's road. This year for the first time a bell was placed on the meetinghouse, having been purchased by subscription, the committee to purchase it consisting of Thaddeus Richardson, Benjamin Geary and Lieut. John Bucknain. In the early days Stoneham and its people seemed to be rather fond of indulging in law-suits. In building William Street the road passed through the land and near or over the upper dam of Captain David Hay. They could not agree upon the damages, so the Captain sued the town, recovered judgment, and obtained execution. The Richardsons also had a good deal of trouble about their damages, and finally the town was indicted for not opening that part of the road lying between the meeting-house and the houses of Aaron and Peter Hay through the land of Lieut. John Buck nam, now from Pleasant to Central Street.
On the 18th day of June, 1812, war was declared by the Congiess of the United States against Great Britain. This war was generally unpopular in New England, though there was a minority strongly in favor of it. The people of the town supported the government, and cheerfully met the demands that were made upon them. At the May meeting they voted "to make up the pay of the soldiers who have volunteered or shall volunteer their services or who shall be drafted out of the militia in Stoneham in pursuance of the recent general orders of the Governor for raising ten thousand men out of the militia of the Commonwealth, to the sum of fifteen dollars the month, including the United States pay, when they shall be called into the actual service." Again, in August, Captain Caleb Richardson, Lieut. John Bucknam, Deacon Jabez Lynde, Captain Nathaniel Cowdrey and Mr. James Hill wer: chosen a committee to draw up resolutions upon the national affairs. About this time a famous company of riflemen was organized, known as the Washington Rifle Greens. Most of the men came from Stoneham and South Reading, though the first commissioned officers were all from Stoneham. It was tor a long time the crack company of the vicinity, and was called out in 1814 from September 22d to October 31st, and stationed on Dorchester Heights. Its first commander, Captain Jonathan Hay, is said to have been a very efficient officer. Some of the old-time captains whose names were familiar thirty or forty years ago, such as Captain Wright, Captain William Richardson and Captain Steele graduated from this company. The following is a roll of the company while in camp on Dorchester Heights: "Inspection and musterroll of Captain Jonathan Hay's company of riflemen, of Maj. William Ward's battalion in Gen. Maltby's brigade, of the detached corps under Major-Gen. Whiton (October 25, 1814.) Jonathan Hay, Captain; John H. Wright, Lieutenant; William Richardson, Ensign; Sergeants—William Deadman, Benjamin Geary, Jr., Samuel Richardson, William Bryant. Corporals— Abraham Marshall. Ephraim Pierce, Samuel Wiley, Jesse Converse. Musicians—Jedde Brown, William Holden, Joseph Matthews, Thomas Parker, Nathaniel Richardson. Privates—James Brown, Jeremiah Converse, Samuel Evans, James Emerson, Joseph Eaton, Benjamin Flint, Samuel Geary, Amos Howard, Pierpont Hay, Simon Jones, Henry Knight, Charles Lewis, Jas. Lathe, Asahel Porter, Timothy Pierce, Alpha Richardson, Jonas M. Rowe, Frederick Slocumb and Saiv.uel Sweetser."
One of the curious relics of bygone days was the office of tythingman, a part of whose duty it was to preserve order in the church. The sense of propriety and decency which exists among the young people of to-day must be greater than that which prevailed seventy-five years ago. In 1816 it was necessary to instruct the tythingmen to "clear the stairway of the meetinghouse so that the people can have a free passage into the gallery, and the people when they leave the house will turn to the right hand or the left hand as soon as they get out of doois, so that others may have a free passage through the porch, and to keep the hoys and girls from whispering and laughing in the gallery. The tythingmen will post up these instructions at the Meeting-House."
In passing from Stoneham towards Spot Pond over Pond Street, the traveller notices on the right about one-fourth of a mile below the junction of South Street, the well-kept buildings of what was formerly known as the Tom Gould Farm. For generations it had been the home of a branch of this old family. David, a grandson of the original settler, John Gould, had bought it in 1714. The present dwelling occupies the site of the old house. On this spot, and during the night of November 25, 1819, occurred the brutal murder of Jacob Gould, which produced a profounder sensation in the town than any other local event in its history. The family at that time consisted of two brothers, David and Jacob, and a maiden sister, Polly Gould, together with one Mrs. Winship, who was hired to help do the work. David and Polly were supposed, for those times, to have considerable money. On the evening of the 25th, between eight and nine o'clock, they were sitting in the kitchen, when three men rushed in with disguised faces, armed with dirks, and demanded of Jacob his money. He attempted to defend himself with a chair, but was overcome, and fell pierced with several wounds, one of which, in the region of the heart, proved fatal. David also received two wounds. The hands of David and Polly were then bound, and each one of the three was in turn taken tip slairs to produce the money. From Jacob was obtained five dollars, from David two hundred dollars, and from Polly six hundred dollars, hers being deposited in six deer-skin bags, in Jacob's chest In going up stairs the light went out. In the scuffle that ensued Polly's fingers were badly cut and a finger of one of the robbers. Daniels was afterwards detected partly by means of this wound. A fourth man stood at the door to keep watch, supposed by some to have b en one Clifton, who had formerly resided in the town. After the robbery the members of the family were all put down cellar, a feather-btd thrown down for them to lie upon, a table placed against the door, and warning given that one of the robbers would be left to guard them for two hours. About eleven o'clock, however, David was impelled by the dying groans of his brother to venture up-stairs and give the alarm to their next-door neighbor. Stephen Lynde.
Iiy daylight the whole town was aroused, and scouring the country far and near. Jacob died at three o"clock on the morning of the 26th. A reward of five hundred dollars was offered by David for the detection of the murderers, and five hundred more by the Governor of the Commonwealth. Several men were arrested, but no one was convicted, though Daniels was probably one of the guilty parties. He hung himself while in jail before the trial.
From the early settlement of the town the school-house had been located near the spot where the first meeting-house was built. This was about the geographical centre of the inhabitants. During the period of a century or more, one building followed another. The town-meetings were sometimes held in the meeting-house, and sometimes in the school-house.
In 1820 the town "voted to build a school-house on or near the spot where the O'd meeting-house stood, large enough to be convenient for the whole town for school and town meetings, by excluding small children under a certain age." But it was not built till 1826. The first story was used for a school, and the second for a town hall.
The structure which was erected in accordance with this vote remained where it was built until 1833, when it was moved to the corner of Pleasant and Central Streets where it now siands-, known as the Old Town House. As has been said, the practice prevailed for many years of putting up the town's paupers, for support, at public .miction, an occasion attended, very likely, at times, with some festivity, judging fiom the fact that the meeting adjourned for the sale, sometimes to the tavern, and sometime- to Alpheus Richardson's Hall, neither of which places in those days was surrounded by an atmosphere of total abstinence. The last auction of this character occurred in 1825, when Benjamin Blodgett was struck off to Col. Eldridge Geary at seven shillings per week; Phineas Blodgett to the same person at fifty-three cents per week; Thomas L. Knight to Captain Daniel Green at one dollar and twelve cents per week; Daniel G. Brown to Col. Geary at forty cents per week; Chloe and Nancy Freeman (colored) to Daniel Gould, Esq., at one dollar and ninety-eight cents for both; John Crocker to Joseph W. Noble at eighteen cents per week, and John Green to Benjamin Geary at one dollar per week.
In 1826 the town bought the old Poor Farm, and this cheerful and economical custom has become a relic of by-gone times. It is a pleasant reflection that the number of paupers is much less at the present time, in proportion to tl e population, than it was seventy years ago. With the progress and development of the nineteenth century poverty is greatly diminished. The laboring man of today enjoys comforts and luxuries almost beyond the conception of our grandfathers.
During the first century of our history one of the principal burdens imposed upon the town had been the support of the minister. The last appropriation