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1826 Map of Boston "Free" Bridge from Boston to Dorcester; South Boston

SKU: biblio 32 $2,225.00
A hand written manuscript document (1826) for the construction of a Free Bridge from Boston to South Boston, called Dorcester. Condition and Size: Measures 16 by 13 1/2 inches with ribbon binding and multiple paper separations at the folds, sustained by conservator's tape (from a previous owner), staining and toning on front cover which had the most exposure, some spots and paper loss at the edges and separation along the ribbon as well.The drawing is a Distinct Diagram of the proposed bridge starting at Wright & Dame's land on Sea Street (Federal Street) in Boston and progressing to the proposed location in Dorcester (South Boston, which is not shown on the drawing). Extensive list of participants, signed the document with the following hand written description: " The undersigned having examined the annexed plan of Mssr's Wright & Dame's Wharves at Sea Street, and viewed the premises in reference to the exetension of the most Southerly Wharf as described on said plan, so approve of the same, as it would in the opinion facilitate the passage of vessels through the draw of said Bridge- and be exceedingly beneficial to navigation, provided the Easterly side of said contemplated Wharf shall be appropriated exclusively for the accommodation of vessels passing through said Bridge and at the same time afford the protection of the Bridge itself which seems to be in....(cannot read last two words). Modern photos are NOT included but will show where the old bridge was and what is there today. Signed by 35 Boston and Dorcester individuals. Names include: Blanchard, Merryman, Doeney Clapp, Newcomber, French, Lovell, Hersey, Dexter, Torrey, Clifford, Lincoln, Pratt, Reich, Ingalls, Newcomb, Batt, Rice, Lawson. Further information as found on the web: Boston District Court Records: Wright Vs Dame and others: Greenleaf & J.P. Rogers for the Plaintiff. Bartlett & B. R. Curtis, for the defendants. Hubbard, J. This case comes before the court on the amended bills and answers, and sundry depositions and proofs; and the follwoing appear to be the material facts upon which the questions arise, and which have been argued by the counsel in the case: In the year 1826, sundry individuals, of whom the complaintant, Wright, was one, procured an act from the legislature, authorizing them to erect a free bridge from or near Sea Street (Boston, MA) to South Boston, where Wright lived. This movement brought the flats, lying on the line and in the vicinity of the contemplated bridge, before the public as an object of valuable speculation, into which the complainant entered; and through the aid of N. R. Cobb, of the house of Freeman, Cobb & Co., (and having an understanding with Dame to become interested therein,) he made the bargain for the flats which are the subject of the present controversy. At the time when the purchases were completed, in May 1827, he received from Cobb the means of paying the purchase money, and Cobb also agreed to make further advances to enable him to fill up the flats and make them saleable for building lots. For the purpose of interesting Dame in the purchase, and to secure his name and joint cooperation in the buisness, the complainant made a conveyance of an undividied half of th epremises to Dame, and they, on the same day, joined in a conveyance of them to Cobb, by two mortgage dees to secure the money advanced for the consideration of the land, and to supply the means of filling up the flats. About the same time, an obligation was also given to on Thomas Kendall, in consideration of services rendered in regard to the purchase of the property, and for future advice and supervision concerning the filling up of said land and making sales thereof, to account with him, on the close of the speculation, for one fifth part of the net profits. Under thses arrangements, the parties, Wright and Dame, went on expexpeding large sums of money in filling up the flats, aa part of which money appears to have been supplied by Dame from his own resources, and a part from Cobb, who gave them assistance from time to time, taking security on the property. The parties being disappointed in not making sales as they expected, and Wright, being apparently considrably in debt to Dame, for the purpose of giving him security, conveyed to Dame his undivided half of the premises, by deed of release and quitclaim bearing date September 29th, 1829, and subject to the outstanding mortgages in favor of Cobb. At the same time, they entered into an agreement, by which the trusts were set forth under which Dame was to hold the estate; one of which was, that Dame should not sell any part of it without the written consent of said Wright, until after the 1st day of May 1832; at the end of which time, as much of the land and property, so released by said Wright to said Dame, as should be necessary for the payment of all debts due from said Wright to said Dame, and of all moneys which said Dame migh have paid or should thereafter pay to said Cobb and the Boston Free Bridge Corporation, on said Wright's account, and all taxes and expenses incurred on said property, with interest thereon half yearly, should be sold in suitable house or store lots, and the same should be disposed of at public auction. And it was also further agreed, that the proceeds of the sales shoule be applied to the payment of any just and lawful claims or demands which said Dame might have against Wright, and also for the payment of any sum or sums which said Dame might have or should have advanced towards said Wright's half part of the expenses and cost of improvements, makde by said Wright and said Dame on said premises....etc. etc. By the act of March 4, 1826, Nathaniel Whittemore, Noah Brooks, Cyrus Alger, William Wright, and others, were made a corporation by the name of the Boston Free Bridge Corporation. The corporation was authorized to build a free bridge across the channel from or near Sea street, in Boston, to the newly-made land at South Boston, and nearly in the direction of the Dorchester turnpike, and to erect a Wharf or pier on each side of said bridge, near said draws, for the accomodation of vessels passing through said bridge. No duty or toll should ever be 1828 the bridge was opened and called the South Boston North Free Bridge and later its name was changed to Federal-street Bridge, connecting at a late date in the 1850's was Page's Wharf Federal Street Bridge, Boston and South Boston, 1857; from 2 Dorchester Avenue over Fort Point Channel to Dorchester Avenue in South Boston; formerly from the foot of federal (formerly Sea) Street to Turnpike Street (now Dorchester Avenue), South Boston; built by the Boston Free Bridge Corporation in 1827 and 1828; bought by the City of Boston, September 26, 1828; opened later in the year; called Sea Street, or South Boston North Free Bridge, when opened in 1828; name changed to Federal Street Bridge, May 11, 1857; widened in 1869; now Dorchester Avenue Bridge; Dorchester Avenue extended over Federal Street Bridge, April 8, 1897. note: The Dover Street Bridge was initially called the South Bridge, which is why the Federal Street Bridge had the awkward name of South Boston North Free Bridge. The Boston South Bridge over Fort Point Channel, on the site of today's West Fourth Street Bridge, opened on October 1, 1805 as the first bridge connecting downtown to South Boston. Until it was sold to the city of Boston on April 19, 1832, it was a toll bridge. The Dorchester Turnpike Corporation (sometimes called the South Boston Turnpike) was created by the state legislature on March 4, 1805, to build a turnpike from the east end of the Boston South Bridge (Nook Point) to Milton Bridge over the Neponset River, on the other side of which the Blue Hill Turnpike later continued. Construction cost more than expected, and thus high tolls were charged, so many travelers took the old longer route through Roxbury. Despite that, the Dorchester Turnpike was one of the most profitable turnpikes, with earnings steadily climbing to a peak in 1838. When the parallel Old Colony Railroad opened in 1844, earnings quickly fell. The North Free Bridge, on the site of today's Dorchester Avenue Bridge, opened in 1826, providing a more direct route form the north end of the turnpike to Dewey Square downtown.[1] On April 22, 1854, the turnpike became a free public road, named Dorchester Avenue. The name was changed to Federal Street in 1856, as it provided a continuation of that street from downtown Boston (via the North Free Bridge), but it became Dorchester Avenue again in 1870. As part of the building of South Station (opened 1899), Federal Street was cut between the bridge and Dewey Square. Dorchester Avenue was extended north from the bridge around the east side of the new union station, along the shore of the Fort Point Channel, intersecting Mount Washington Avenue (which was also cut by the new station) and Summer Street and ending at Congress Street. Additionally, the Atlantic Avenue Viaduct was built as a second bridge just west of the Dorchester Avenue Bridge, connecting to Atlantic Avenue at Dewey Square. By 1923 the viaduct was gone, but the extension of Dorchester Avenue remains to this day. In the 1990s it was closed to the public, including pedestrians and bicyclists, from the bridge to Summer Street, due to its proximity to Big Dig construction.[2] It has remained closed due to security concerns, as it runs next to the South Postal Annex (a sorting facility of the United States Postal Service). The North Free Bridge, as it was originally called, on the site of today's Dorchester Avenue Bridge, opened in 1826, providing a more direct route from the north end of the turnpike to Dewey Square downtown. On April 22, 1854, the turnpike became a free public road, named Dorchester Avenue. The name was changed to Federal Street in 1856, as it provided a continuation of that street from downtown Boston (via the North Free Bridge). It was during that time that the bridge became known as the Federal Street Bridge. It became Dorchester Avenue again in 1870 and the name of the bridge changed again with it!