History of Lynn, Essex county, Massachusetts

It may properly be remarked that the volume now in the reader's hand, is intended in one sense to be complete in itself; that is, to embody a general view of our history, from the beginning of the settlement to the present time. Yet, so far as its record is in the form of annals, it is supplementary to the 1865 edition of the History of Lynn; and the reader as he proceeds will find many references to that work. This course was adopted for the purpose of economising in the matter of space, by avoiding repetition, and at the same time apprising the reader where further information upon a given topic might be found. For the same general purpose, also, occasional reference is made to the "Centennial Memorial." And the writer is, on the whole, prepared to claim, with some confidence, that this volume, in connection with that of 1865, embodies a full and reliable history of the place from the first settlement, in 1629 down to 1882, with as few repetitions, reviews, or recapitulations as would be consistent with an intelligent and comprehensive view.

There has been no waste space to be provided for; and some things have been omitted with hesitancy, where the press of matter upon the writer's attention allowed him only the privilege of choice; a privilege that he has always exercised in a manner that seemed most desirable for the reader.

There is, in a work of this kind, far more danger of omission than redundancy. And it is almost certain that the reader will think of some topic which it appears to him has not been set forth with desirable fullness. Hut before concluding that there is an omission, accidental or intentional, it would be well to consider whether the matter is of general interest or of interest only to himself and perhaps a few others, or to any limited or particular class.

While it has not been thought expedient, when speaking of persons, to extenuate in a degree to give false coloring to character, nothing has been set down in malice. The endeavor has been to give an honest and fair account of whoever and whatever has come under notice.

With the reception of his former imperfect works by those whose opinions are of value, the writer has had abundant reason to be pleased; and all courteous and well-intended suggestions have been gratefully received and duly considered. Whether his escape from criticism is attributable to excellence or insignificance is a question about which he need not trouble himself The unfledged critic, as every writer knows, often fancies that he has demolished an author when he has only amused him. And it is well for both writer and reviewer to bear in mind that no author can be written down by any pen but his own nor written up, as to that matter.


Table of Contents

I. Introduction: beginning on page 9:
This Section embraces remarks concerning the Northmen, and their supposed early visits to our coast, together with a brief notice of the Indians found here.

II. Annals: beginning on page 17:
In this Section our history is brought forward, in the form of Annals, from 1864 to 1882, the 1865 edition having, in the same form, recorded events from the time of the first settlement, in 1629, to said year 1864.

III. Biographical Sketches: beginning on page 97:
In this Section appear, alphabetically arranged, the names of more than two hundred individuals, some deceased, and some now living, who have been residents of Lynn, with sketches, more or less extended, of a large number who have in various ways become conspicuous.

IV. Miscellaneous Notes: beginning on page 221:
This Section is devoted to a collection of detached topics connected with our history, chiefly illustrative of the condition of things at various periods.

V. Chronological Table: beginning on page 275:
This summary is full, and intended of itself to give a comprehensive glance at our whole history, comprising notices of remarkable events and interesting occurrences, with details sufficient for a clear understanding.

VI. Conclusion: beginning on page 285:
In this Section appear compendious remarks of a somewhat desultory character, but pertinent and in accord with the general purpose of the volume.

VII. The Index: occupying the closing pages of the volume:
This contains all the personal names in the book, arranged alphabetically with the subjects.

VIII. Pictorial Addenda: page 311.


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The volume of the History of Lynn, by Alonzo Lewis and James R. Newhall, known as the 1865 Edition, embodies our history from the first settlement, in 1629, to 1864. Another volume, by the last-named writer, bringing the history down to 1883, was published. The main body of the volume now in hand is this last-named work with a Supplement continuing the Annals on to 1890 thus furnishing what is believed to be a complete History of Lynn from its first settlement, in 1629 to 1890 two hundred and sixty-one years.