Self-Guided Tour: The Work of Revolution in Cambridge

Laundresses at a Revolutionary Army camp, circa 1780.

Introduction For many, the first image that comes to mind when thinking of Cambridge during the Revolutionary Era is that of General George Washington taking command of the Continental Army on Cambridge Common in July of 1775, under what would come to be known as the Washington Elm. Although we now know that this tale…

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Thanksgiving in Civil War Cambridge

Harper's Weekly 1864.

By Beth Folsom, 2021 From the beginnings of English settlement in the American colonies, both religious and secular leaders called for certain days to be set aside for fasting, prayer and thanksgiving, usually aligned with the change in seasons and their accompanying times of planting and harvesting. The earliest settlers to arrive in Massachusetts brought…

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1861: The Civil War Comes to Cambridge

Cornelius Gerrit Hendrick Bennick enlisted in April 1861, joining some 100 other Cambridge men in Company D, 5th Regiment, Massachusetts Infantry. The unit fought in several major battles, including Gettysburg. After the war, Bennick was a member of the Common Council and the Massachusetts House of Representatives. His papers are in the Cambridge Historical Society…

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Some Aspects of the East Cambridge Story

By John W. Wood, 1956 “This paper gives a totally inadequate account of an appealingly picturesque and colorful neighborhood, the area that might have been a slum and isn’t, the step-child of the University City. “ For some reason, the local history of East Cambridge has been almost completely neglected. It is a little hard…

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