Tour of Medford, MA

Bob introduces Medford, MA, a city five miles north of Boston. Settled in 1630, Medford once flourished with industry, including the shipbuilding building. Today, it is a bedroom community.

Clip Summary

Bob introduces the town of Medford, the fourth oldest English settlement in America. The town was settled in 1630, and was built on the lands of two wealthy British families.

North of Mystic River stands the house of Peter Tufts, whose house was built in 1680 (and has 18-inch brick walls). In1852, Peter's descendent Charles gave over 100 acres to what is now Tufts University.

The town originally prospered as a shipbuilding center. The ships ran trade in sugar, slaves, and rum between Europe, the Caribbean, and the colonies. Thatcher McGoon's shipyard employed 1000 workers, and the lumber for the yard came from all over New England.

Other businesses thrived also, such as brick and tile production outfits, and companies that manufactured carpeting, textiles, hats, linseed oil, and machinery for shoe making.

Now, Medford is a bedroom community for Boston, and homes with Victorian architecture, put up in the Industrial Revolution, are in high demand.

West Medford is where the project house is located, and an old map shows that it was an active dairy, which processed and delivered milk from 1886 to the 1960's.

The house is an example of New England architecture from the 1880s. Bob meets homeowner Rick Larsen on the front porch before the two walk around to the garden. Architect Richard Trenmaglio joints to talk about ideas for improvements and additions to the house-- a back deck, for instance, or a conversion of the carriage house into a studio connecting to the main house.