Dedham (Mass.).

Proceedings at the celebration of the two hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the incorporation of the town of Dedham, Massachusetts, September 21, 1886 online

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Lion Engine No. 2, West Dedham, W. C. Fuller, Foreman.
12 men.

Norfolk Engine No. 6, West Dedham, J. Hannon, Jr., Foreman.

12 men.

Franklin Engine No. 8, West Dedham, George G. Bonney,
Foreman. 20 men.

Rescue Hook and Ladder No. i, Dedham Village, George Hogan,
Foreman. 10 men.

Supply Wagon.


Color White.

Baldwin's Cadet Band.

Chief of Division, Henry E. Crocker.

Guy C. Channell, J. H. Burdett.

D. F. Howard. E. J. Cox.

Willard E. Jones.

Arthur Whitman, Color-Bearer.

School Children of Dedham.

Boys of the several schools, 275 in number, marching in line, 4 abreast.

Girls of the several schools in barges, 9 in number.

Barge containing inmates of the Boys' Home, Dedham.


Color Purple.

Drum and Fife.

Chief of Division, F. F. Favor.

B. F. White. J. B. Smith.

E. a. Chase. C. A. Cotton.

E. P. Cassell, Jr., Color-Bearer.


Company of Continentals, 50 strong, under command of Captain
Daniel R. Beckford, Lieuts. Smith and Partridge.

Honorary Staff Officers of Continentals.

J. H. Griggs, Adjutant ; S. G. Bent, Ensign, 73 years old, -carrying

the old Pine-Tree Standard ; Richard Mackintosh, Henry

T. McClearn, Frank M. Bailey, Samuel J. J,

Watson, F. J. Bingham, C. L. Cotton.

First Float. — First Inhabitants. 1630. Wigwam surrounded by
pine branches and shocks of Indian corn. Original inhabitants,
savages, personated by Chauncey S. Churchill, as Big Chief;
H. L. Wardle, C. F. Foss, E. E. Norris, F. E. Clapp, Henry
S. Baker.

Second Float. — The coming of the First Settlers from Water-
town to Dedham in 1635, represented as coming by boat. The
first settlers were correctly personated by Martin Hanson and
his son John, two daughters. Misses Maria and Delia, and
Misses Annie and Bertha Kiessling, Miss Annie McGee, and
Herman Weber.

Third Float. — A House in 1636. Log-cabin, covered with spoils
of the early backwoods days in shape of fox, raccoon, skunk, and
other skins. Characters : Settler, personated by Henry Cham-
berlain ; his wife, at spinning-wheel, Miss Dolly Wale.

Fourth Float. — Capture of Indian Chief Pomham in Dedham
Woods, July 25, 1676. Pomham personated by Daniel R. Beck-
ford, Jr. ; Indians, by R. J. Fitzgerald, C. E. Luce, Joseph C.
McManus, W. M. Matta ; Puritans, by Fred. E. Robinson, as
Captain, Frank Green, George Cartwright, James Keltie,
Victor Reeve.

Fifth Float. — Capture of a Royal Governor by a Dedham man,
April 19, 1689. Royal Governor, Sir Edmund Andros, person-
ated by Charles H. J. Kimball ; his page, by R. W. Walker ;
Daniel Fisher, who captured him, by H. K. White, Jr. ; and his
men by A. H. and E. A. Watson, R. Cartwright, F. H.
Wright, Daniel McDonald.

Sixth Float. — Guarding Wife and Children to Church in 1690.
Scene, winter; place, woodland. Characters: Settler, Irving
Donley, armed with old flintlock ; his son, George Paul, a(so
armed ; his wife, Miss Mary C. Ellis ; his daughter, little Miss
Emma Donley.


Seventh Float. — Minute-man, 1775. Personated by Edward J.
Keelan, who, with one hand on the plough and the other on his
musket, presented a correct and striking picture of New England's
hardy and courageous sons, ready at a moment's notice to hasten
forth to do and die for American Liberty, — witness Concord, Lex-
ington, Bunker Hill. The musket Mr. Keelan carried is a his-
torical relic, an old flintlock of 1779. This tableau was awarded
much applause along the line of march.

Eighth Float. — Husking-party in 1826. A merry party busily at
work husking the golden ears of corn. Personated by Andrew
Wheeler, as grandfather; Jake, his son, William Parker;
Mrs. M. A. Nichols, as grandmother; Misses Liney Wheeler,
Millie Kreis, Gussie Graydon, Minnie Fitzgerald, and
Masters Edward Willcutt, Herbert Crosby, Harry Cham-
berlain, Eddie Welch, and little Willie Wheeler, as grand-

Ninth Float. — Old Father Time and the Seasons. Characters :
Old Father Time, Philip J. Wieland; Spring, Miss Lottie
WiELAND ; Summer, Julius Delmuth ; Autumn, Karl Wag-
ner ; Winter, Miss Minnie Zikendrath.

Tenth. — Old Stage-coach.

Eleventh. — Modern Tally-ho. The Boston and Providence Citi-
zens' Stage-coach Company ; Timothy Gay, President ; Thomas
P. Brown, Agent. Personated by members of the Boston Cham-
ber of Commerce.

Twelfth. — J. E. Smith riding a fat Ox. Mr. Smith's oxmanship
was much admired by the spectators along the route.


Color Green.

Chief of Staff, John Wardle, Jr.

B. F. Copeland. Charles W. Tucker.

R. S. Clisby. Samuel C. French.

Lawrence W. Feeney, Color-Bearer.

This Division was composed of the Trade exhibits of the town, and
was in line as follows : —


West Dedham Grange, No. 133, four-horse team driven by John
Rogers, containing old-fashioned farming implements as used by
the hardy toilers of Dedham in 1636, and those now in use in
1886 ; over and among which were arranged grains in sheaves, and

B. F. CoPELAND, a team loaded down with the products of plant,
vine, and tree, with John Sullivan as driver.

Merchants' Woollen Mills — Harding, Colby, & Co., owners ; Timo-
thy O'Callaghan, Agent — made a very fine display in two teams.
First team, four horses, Edgar Dean, driver, contained a loom,
with August Danner, who has had an experience of thirty-three
years at the loom, — a weaver at the mills in East Dedham since
1853. On the front seat with its owner, Samuel Robinson, was
a live sheep, and arranged about the team were the products made
from the fleecy coat of that most useful animal, from the time it
leaves its back until it becomes cloth. The second team, P. HowE,
driver, contained cloth cased ready for the market.

Nathaniel Morse, two teams : one loaded with the several kinds
of fertilizers of which he is agent, John McGee, driver ; the
other filled with bales of pressed hay and bags of grain, W. Nel-
son, driver.

Charles French, a four-horse team, load of wood decorated with
American flags, R. J. Buchanan, driver.

Amory Fisher, three teams, representing his business of coal, grain,
and ice-dealer ; established in 1854.

Franklin Square Market made an excellent showing of meats, vege-
tables, and fruits.

T. F. O'Neil made a handsome display of groceries, tastefully

S. A. Tuttle made a display of his business as veterinary surgeon.

W. C. Fuller, a team-load of house-moving implements. Team
neatly decorated with flowers ; H. T. Place, driver.

G. W. French, load of wood, decorated with National colors, with a
horse and saw on top as a suggestive hint; William Ellsw^orth,

Philander Allen exhibited a four-horse load of marble monuments
and gravestones ; while in the rear of the team workman Thomas
Donnelly showed how marble-cutting: was done.


J. Lynas made a fine display of horse-blankets and harnesses.

Carl P. E. Ziegler made an excellent showing, in a handsomely
decorated team, of carriage mats and robes, harnesses, and up-
holstery articles.

William Baker exhibited his business of whip-manufacturer in a
team uniquely arranged ; A. W. Finney, driver.

G. A. French made an exhibit of his business as a grocer ; G. E.
BoNNEY, driver.

M. Keelan, hardware-dealer, made a good showing of stoves.

F. C. Weeks exhibited a load of provisions.

Marshall, the expressman, with horse and team decorated with
magenta plumes, and Lewis J. Houghton, the veteran, twenty-one
years in the business, as driver, made a good showing of how
business is done in modern times.

Wallis Whiting, assisted by Thomas Proctor, Jr., and Master
Withington, as Puritans, showed how cider was made in 1636.

W. S. Macomber exhibited a wagon-load of furniture and carpets.

J. E. Smith represented his business of provision-dealer.

C. F. Macomber exhibited a neatly arranged load of carpenter's
tools, paints, etc.

Charles Winschman, in a prettily decorated team, showed how
cigars were made. Frank Thiel assisted him.

GoDiNG Brothers made a good display of grain in bags in two
teams. Each pyramid of bags was surmounted by a small ever-
green tree.

C. S. Churchill had two teams in line; one with a load of bricks
in barrels, the other with coal.

Moris Greenhood, in a neatly decorated team, advertised his busi-
ness as a clothing-dealer.

P. B. Gaffney ended the division with a team-load of live-stock,
representing his business as a butcher and marketman. The team
was separated into three pens, containing respectively a big hog,
a calf, and a pair of lambs, of which J. F. Moran had charge.


At precisely 12 o'clock the procession arrived on
the Church Green, where the Governor and staff
and invited guests reviewed it from the band-stand
on the Green, the marshals being drawn up near
the stand. At this hour the chimes were rung
upon the Episcopal Church, and a national salute
was fired.

At 12.30, the review being over, the procession
was dismissed, and the Governor and guests entered
the church.

At 11.30 the galleries of the church had been
opened to ladies, and upon the arrival of the pro-
cession and the entry of the Governor and guests to
the church the building was crowded to its utmost
capacity, and presented a most brilliant appearance.
The pulpit had been elaborately decorated with
plants, flowers, and evergreen, and upon a platform
in front sat the Governor and staff ; the Orator of
the Day, Erastus Worthington ; the President,
Thomas L. Wakefield; President Timothy Dwight,
of Yale College, Hon. John D. Long, Dr. George
E. Ellis, and other invited guests.



By Charles J. Capen.



Bv Frederic J. Stimson.
Music composed by Arthur W. Thayer.^

Athwart the way our fathers laid

The summer sunh'ght falls ;
The elms our fathers set still shade
The road, 'twixt church and pasture made ;
The stones their ploughshares first uplaid

Still lie in mossy walls.

Down from the western hills our own

Still, roaming river runs,
Content in Dedham's arms alone
To lie, and mirror spire and stone ;
The robin to our fathers known,

Still sings for us, their sons.

^ For the music, see pages 199-204.



For the fulness of earth,

For the hght of the sky,

For their death, for our birth,

For the heritage high
Born of the word of light,
Won by the deed of might,
Saved by the sowing of sight ;
For the light in the eyes and the love in the hearts of men that brings
Men to be brave in war and true in the love of all things ;
Glory of deed that is past,
Safety of State that is fast,
Hope that is now and shall last ;

For the flower and the fruit.

For the eye and the word,

For the tree and its root,

For the sleep of the sword, —
We praise thee, our Lord.

The harvest falls from broader fields,

The waning woods are few ;
Food for the world their homestead yields.
All earth's oppressed their shelter shields,
A nation's nerved arm now wields

The truth that first they knew.

Be not alone a harvest won

Of gold, from labored hours ;
Undo not what their hands have done,
Nor bind with wealth they sought to shun ;
Still ring the bells at set of sun, —

Our fathers' God, and ours.


From sins of the few.
From crimes of the many,
From prophets untrue,
From rule of the penny ;


Crime, that ignorance frees ;
Lust, that is born of ease ;
Hate, that is born of these ;
From the curse of false lights, and worship of earth, and then
Doubt, and forgetting of God, and death of the soul in men ;
Wealth, that is easy won.
Freedom, too soon undone,
Malice, that masks the sun ;
From conflict of class,
From rage falsely stirred,
From greed of who has.
From death of thy word, —
Deliver us. Lord.



By Rev. Joseph B. Seabury.

/^ LORD God of Hosts, Ruler of nations and
^-^^ of men, we adore Thee as our father's God.
Obedient to Thy voice, we " remember the days
of old." With devout gratitude for Thy present
favor, " we ask for the old paths."

We bless Thee for our honored heritage, for the
simple virtues, the ripe wisdom, the kindly graces,
the spiritual fortitude that distinguished our fathers.
We would not be unmindful of the trials through
which they passed, loyal to an unerring conscience.
Grant that we may have power to discern the deep
principles for which they suffered banishment from
native land, that they might rear on a free soil the
enduring monument of justice to personal convic-


tion, liberty to fellow-men, and " the honor that is
due unto Thy name."

We remember with self-distrust their fealty to
the cause of education, that the school and the
church were made to grow together, the pledge
and promise of an intelligent Christian common-

We give Thee thanks for their valiant rebuke
of injustice at the hands of the mother-country, for
that patriotic response which met the appeal to
arms for the assertion of independence, when the
white-haired veteran and the youthful volunteer
stood side by side in the heat of battle. We
thank Thee for that holy impulse which suddenly
transformed the patriot civilian into the patriot

We bless Thee for the unrecorded fidelity of
our ancestors, for the faithful but tranquil labor
of the husbandman, who, from year to year sowed
the seed in springtime and reaped the harvest in
autumn, — they whose memory is chronicled in
simple epitaph ; for the industrious mother who
taught her sons and daughters with tender and
patient affection, that she might present them in
mature life, an honor to their station, " meet for
the Master's use."

We devoutly recall that this rich patrimony of
sterling worth has come down to us in unbroken
continuity, that we are closely and intimately re-
lated to the early past. Thou hast taught us in


Thy servants, our fathers, that " The Lord's portion
is His people."

We would not seek to patronize their virtues.
We sit humbly at their feet. We cherish the soil
that tabernacles their dust. We would memorialize
their deeds in lives of filial devotion to humanity,
truth, and God. May the joyous commemorations
of this day inspire us to strengthen the things that
remain, bind us more closely together in charity
and hope, that we may grow thereby into the like-
ness of Him who died and rose again, their Saviour
and ours, in whose name we pray. Amen.

Mr. Seabury concluded with the Lord's prayer,
in which many of those present joined.


Hon. Thomas L. Wakefield.

Fellow- Citizens, — We have assembled in com-
memoration of the Two Hundred and Fiftieth
Anniversary of the incorporation of the Dedham
of 1636. This ancient town was not limited to
the boundaries of this our present municipality,
but included within its limits the present towns of
Dedham, Medfield, Wrentham, Medway, Needham,
Bellingham, Walpole, Franklin, Dover, Norwood,
Norfolk, Wellesley, Millis, and parts of Sherborn,


Natick, Foxborough, Hyde Park, and the city of
Boston. We, who are honored by retaining the
old name, welcome you all, sons and daughters of
the ancient Dedham, back to the old hearthstone,
to join with us in this celebration. We unitedly
bid a hearty welcome to your Excellency, the Chief
Magistrate of the Commonwealth, and to all others
in authority ; to all invited guests ; to all veterans
of the several Grand Army Corps ; to all military
and civil organizations ; and to all other good citi-
zens who have come up hither to honor us with
their presence and participate with us in the cele-
bration of this interesting anniversary.

On Sept. lo (old style), 1636, the General Court
granted to nineteen persons the land forming ancient
Dedham for the purpose of making a settlement, —
a common plantation. These nineteen persons were
the sole projDrietors of these common lands, subject
to any claims of the Indians who inhabited them,
until they admitted associates.

They adopted a town covenant, or constitution,
as we might call it, by which they were governed,
and under which others, upon strict examination as
to fitness, were admitted as inhabitants of the town,
by signing the covenant binding them to fulfil its
provisions. Subsequently the Indian titles were
extinguished by equitable contract with Philip, the
Sagamore, and the Sachems Chicatabot, Josias,
Nehoiden, and Magus, whereupon their title became


The proprietors of this then infant township
increased in numbers by constant additions from
without; defended their rude but happy homes
from the attacks of the hostile and treacherous
Indians by whom they were surrounded; intro-
duced the arts of industry and civiHzation ; and
with sturdy hands, year by year, turned the forests
into fruitful fields, and caused the wilderness to
blossom as the rose.

When these first inhabitants came to this place,
there were no general laws in the colony to regulate
their intercourse and protect their lives and in-
terests. They were a law unto themselves. As
was said by a worthy historian of the town : " They
formed a civil society out of its first simple ele-
ments." This society originated in a compact;
the laws derived their force from the consent of
the people. This, with other similar settlements,
"was the beginning of the American system of

These little communities of Pilgrims, imbued with
the idea of religious liberty in their native country,
thus began in this then wilderness land to lay the
foundations of a democratic civil government, upon
which has been reared this grand superstructure of
a free and independent republic. With pious care
in establishing schools for the education of the
children, and churches with devoted teachers and
ministers of the gospel for their spiritual instruc-
tion, under the fostering care of the Colonial and


subsequently the State governments, this little com-
munity has grown from infancy to mature age.

We meet on this occasion to celebrate its birth-
day with mutual congratulations, and to recount the
virtues and heroic deeds of the fathers. In the
felicitous language of the orator upon the two hun-
dredth birthday of the town, which may well be
repeated as often as this birthday celebration occurs,
permit me to say: "Citizens of Dedham, you will
find in your history much to gratify your just
pride, much to excite honorable emulation. By
intelligent and godly ancestors was this town
planted ; by a manly and virtuous race has it been
nourished and sustained. Its sons have fought the
battles of their country; they have led in its coun-
cils. At no time, in no manner, have they failed to
contribute an honorable share of the talent, the
patriotism, the domestic virtues, which created and
have built up this great Republic."



By Rev, Seth C. Beach.

Tune — " Dedham."

To Him who formed the rolling spheres
And guides them on their way,

The circle of a thousand years
Is but as yesterday.


Secure in His eternal might
Our fathers braved the sea,

And founded here in truth and right
An empire of the free.

He made the few and weak His care,
And gave their seed increase ;

He listened to His children's prayer.
And led them on to peace.

As unto them, thou God of grace,
Still be from age to age ;

Still grant the favor of Thy face,
And bless our heritage.



By Erastus Worthington.

We mark to-day the lapse of two hundred and
fifty years since the name of Dedham was given to
the plantation begun here in 1635. It is the name-
day of the town, rather than its birthday, that we
celebrate. The actual settlement was gradually
made by successive steps, which may be distinctly
traced by existing records. In May, 1635, leave
was given by the General Court for the inhabitants
of Watertown to remove whither they pleased, pro-
vided they continued under the government.^ On
the 3d of September, 1635, the Court ordered a
plantation to be settled about two miles above the

1 Mass. Col. Rec, vol. i. p. 148.


falls of Charles River, on the northeast side, with
land on both sides of the river, to be laid out as
the Court should appoint thereafter.^ The language
of this order clearly implies that an exploration
had already been made. According to Governor
Winthrop, the town was begun in September, 1635.^
The town record of births began in the same year.
In the succeeding March the Court appointed com-
missioners to set out the bounds of the new planta-
tion,^ who made a report April 13, 1636.* There is
no existing record of any meeting of the settlers
here until Aug. 18, 1636. Finally, on the fifth day
of September, 1636, at a meeting of nineteen per-
sons, the petition was signed for the enlargement
and confirmation of the grant of the previous year.
The Town Covenant had already been drawn up, and
had been signed by the petitioners. On the 8th of
September, according to the General Court records,^
or on the loth of September, according to our town
records, the order was passed which gave to the
plantation the name of Dedham, with lands not
before granted to any town or person, on the east-
erly and southerly side of the river, and an addi-
tional grant of five miles square on the other side
of the river. In this brief and informal order are
comprised all the corporate powers with which the
town was ever specially invested. To borrow the

^ Mass. Col. Rec, vol. i. p. 159. ^ Winthrop, vol. i. p. 167.

3 Mass. Col. Rec, vol. i. p. 169. * Ibid., p. 175.
^ Ibid., vol. i. p. 180.


words of an old legal definition, the " invisible and
immortal " corporation then created under the name
of Dedham has now existed for two hundred and
fifty years, without any essential change in its civil
constitution. The old town still preserves its cor-
porate identity and its name. In outward conditions
great changes have been wrought. Fifteen other
towns now occupy territory included within the
original grants, beside that portion within the limits
of Boston. Political revolutions have changed the
Colony to the Province, and the Province to the
Commonwealth. The union between church and
town, for two hundred years an inherent part of its
legal constitution, has been dissolved. Eight gen-
erations of men have been born, have lived and died
here. But the town government, protected by the
just limitations of legislative authority on the one
hand, and giving to the people the right to manage
and direct its civil administration on the other, has
retained its hold of life with a wonderful tenacity.
The Dedham of 1636 and of 1886 are one and the
same by historic continuity, however they may be sep-
arated by time. Let us then first congratulate the
old town that two hundred and fifty years have not
so diminished the vigor of her corporate life, that she
may not look hopefully forward to another century ;
and may we not appropriately ascribe to her the
words of the refrain in Tennyson's familiar song, —

" For men may come, and men may go,
But I go on forever."


Dedham was not among the more conspicuous
towns of the Massachusetts Colony. It never
gained the prestige of the college town, nor the
importance of the maritime towns. No dramatic
event is associated with its name. It never expe-
rienced the horrors of an Indian attack, nor was it
a battle-field in the opening scenes of the Revolu-
tion ; but it was one of the first two inland towns,
— the other being Concord, — and they were coeval
in their settlement.^ It was a Puritan town of the
best type, founded by men of intelligence, foresight,
and enterprise, admirably organized, and favored by
a wise administration of its affairs from its very
beginning. In its full, continuous, and well-pre-
served records we find clearly exhibited the leading
ideas of the Colonists, as well as a rare aptitude for
public affairs. In the great crises of colonial his-
tory its quotas of men and money were not far
behind the leading towns, and there was scarcely
a period for two hundred years when Dedham did
not furnish some man of more than a local renown
for the public service. While therefore its history
may be wanting in those thrilling events which
arrest the attention of the world, yet it is one

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Online LibraryDedham (Mass.)Proceedings at the celebration of the two hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the incorporation of the town of Dedham, Massachusetts, September 21, 1886 → online text (page 2 of 13)