​​Tewksbury Historical Society

Winter 2015 - 2016

Line-of-March Program Given Final Approval!

The Tewksbury Selectmen voted unanimously to allow the Tewksbury Historical Society to put up 9 granite posts as Memorials to the Tewksbury Militia that marched to Concord to protect and keep safe that community on April 19, 1775.  One hundred men marched that morning and fought the British who had invaded Lexington and then Concord.  Tewksbury’s three Militia Companies arrived at Meriam’s Corner and fought the British on the flanks and from the rear of the British column as they returned to Boston.  

The Selectmen were very supportive, asking questions about Tewksbury History and giving suggestions as to placement of the granite memorials.  Installation will be during March or early April 2016.  Join the following Corporate Sponsors and many private citizens that have already donated. 

I will be donating to the Line-of-March to take a tax write-off on my taxes.  Please join me with a small or large donation  before the end of this year.  It is the season for giving and lets honor our Tewksbury veterans that came before us.  Watch for details on the dedication of this exciting program on April 17th, 2016.

          `                  David E. Marcus, Interim President



Winter 2014-2015

Tewksbury News from the Friends of Minute Man National Park

The North Bridge Visitor Center opens for spring hours from March 3-31, on Tuesday through Saturday from 11am to 3pm.  A short eight minute video, “Treason or Liberty?” about the North Bridge fight is being shown.  The brass cannon, named the “Hancock”, is on display courtesy of the Bunker Hill Monument Association. It was one of four cannons hidden in Concord and a reason for General Gage to send British troops to Concord on April 19, 1775.  Gage’s troops marching to Concord was what started the Alarm carried by the Unknown Rider through the center of Tewksbury.  He ended his ride in north Tewksbury where John Trull lived. 

At Battle Road Trail you can learn the story of the British marching to Concord and the battle on the British’s Regulars round-trip march back to Boston.  Beginning their trip back to Boston, near the Meriam Farm House, this marks where the 100 Tewksbury Militia and Minutemen first engaged the British along with 1,200 other Militiamen.   After going down to Battle Road Visitor Center, take a short walk to Parker’s Revenge where a militiaman from Tewksbury helped two Concord militiamen catch a runaway horse.  Ironically, the Friends of Minute Man National Park asks a question, “Get fit by walking the Battle Road Trail?”  This is one of the same reasons, the Tewksbury Line-of-March is marking the streets our Militiamen marched going to that fateful battle to defend American freedom and liberty in Concord.  Community wellness is a byproduct of walking and being healthy.   That same route is where our militiamen marched 240 years ago in Tewksbury to Concord.  When we have our Line-Of-March Memorial Posts up with permission by the Selectmen and after we finish off fund raising, we can learn about Tewksbury war history and the Shot Heard ‘round the World that happened in Concord.  A Tewksbury musket helped fire that shot for our neighbors, our neighboring towns, our neighboring states, and all of American that came to join us and fight for freedom. 

Spring 2015

Parchment Document about Tewksbury Revolutionary War Veterans Is Being Preserved in Lowell

A lot of Tewksbury, Chelmsford, and Dracut history now belongs to Lowell.  The Lowell Parks and Conservation Trust is preserving Tewksbury history because they can with help from those towns!  This story really started in 1913 when Sarah Swan Griffin, a noted Lowell historian created a list of people from what is today Lowell, who fought in the Battle of Bunker Hill.  The veterans on her Lowell list all lived in those towns during the war. 

Four parts of Tewksbury voted at Town Meeting to annex itself with the newly incorporated Lowell.  First on April 9, 1832, a petition was voted by 132 voters to annex with Lowell.  This part was called Tewksbury's Belvidere Village.  It was followed by two more votes at Town Meeting in 1874, 1888, and finally in 1906.  Lowell grew and Tewksbury shrank. If you look at the 1831 map of Tewksbury, you will see that Belvidere Village was the population center of Tewksbury.  Harold S. Patten wrote in his 1964 book that the people from Belvidere took wagons, carts, and any horse they could to go to the Brown Tavern before walking across the street to Town Hall.  The Brown Tavern served up some beverages that livened up their spirits and made for a raucous Town Meeting.  They packed the meeting with Belvidere people to win annexation of Belvidere to Lowell. They had quite a parade back to their new, larger town of Lowell. 

The 4th vote included part of Clark Road where a Lt. Thomas Clark lived.  He lived near the Powwow Oak and led the 2ndTewksbury Southeast Militia Company to Concord on April 19, 1775.  Clark did not fight in the Battle of Bunker Hill.  Last year a parchment list was found among papers owned by the Lowell Parks and Conservation Trust.  Rita O'Brien Dee, through Marie Sweeney, brought the word to a Board meeting that Jane Calvin needed help in conserving this list. I talked with Marie and recognized the list as one done by Sarah Swan Griffin.  I met with Jane Calvin and produced an identical list of Tewksbury Veterans from Griffin's 1913 book.  Calvin had the author of the parchment list.  But another problem surfaced, the parchment list was in need of conservation. 

The Line-of-March Committee is raising funds for placement of 9 memorial granite stones that mark the way of the Tewksbury Militia and Minutemen Companies march from Tewksbury Common to Concord.  With the help of the Greater Lowell Community Foundation's Wish Grant Program, $900.00 was raised from generous donors and the Tewksbury Historical Society.  The Tewksbury Library added funding and all goes to conserve the parchment.  The Tewksbury Library will receive a framed high quality, digital copy.  This will hang proudly in the Tewksbury Library.  The Society’s L-O-M Program will use the image on a L-O-M stone on Chandler Street.  Lt. Clark's role in the Battle of Lexington/Concord will be on a plaque shared with Griffin's list on a granite stone in today's Lowell Belvidere Village on Clark Road.  This proves Tewksbury's history is shared with Concord, Charlestown, Lincoln, Lowell and Lexington.