Quincy, Massachusetts - Encyclopedia

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QUINCY, a city of Norfolk (disambiguation)|Norfolk county, Massachusetts, situated on Massachusetts Bay, and separated from Boston by the Neponset river on the N. and from Weymouth by Fore river on the S. Pop. (1890) 16,723; (1900) 23,899, of whom 7662 were foreign-born; (1910 census) 32,642; area, about 16 sq. m. It is served by the New York, New Haven & Hartford railway, and by an interurban electric line. To a large degree Quincy is a residential suburb of Boston. The birthplaces of John Adams, built in 1681, and of John Quincy Adams, built in 1716, are still standing. The Stone Temple, or First (Unitarian) Congregational Church, is the burial-place of the two Adamses. Quincy was also the home of Charles Francis Adams. John Adams gave to the town his valuable private library, and in 1822 founded here the Adams Academy for boys (now closed). In the home of Josiah Quincy (1802-1882) in Wollaston Park is the Quincy Mansion School for Girls. Woodward Institute (1894) is an endowed high school for girls. The public school system, the "Quincy System," was made famous in1875-1880by Col. Francis Wayland Parker (1837-1902), who abolished learning lessons by rote, and introduced Froebelian principles. A public library was opened in 1871, and in 1882 it was housed in the Crane Memorial Hall, designed by H. H. Richardson, and given by the family of Thomas Crane (1803-1875), who had spent his early youth in the town, but had lived in New York City from 1827 until his death. The library contained about 26,000 volumes in 1908. The city has a fine system of parks, among them being Merrymount and Faxon, the latter named in honour of the family of Henry H. Faxon, who in 1882 secured a negative vote by the town to the question whether "licenses be granted for the sale of intoxicating liquors"; subsequently there has been a similar vote each year. The manufactures of Quincy were long unimportant, with the exception of "Quincy granite,'" which was first quarried in 1825,-this being the first "systematic siliceous crystalline rock quarrying" in New England-and of which the output in the form of tombstones and monuments in 1905 was valued at $2,018,198, and in the form of "marble and stone work" was valued at $364,924. But manufacturing rapidly increased in importance between 1900 and 1905; in this period the value of factory products increased 198.2%, to $8,982,446, and the capital invested increased 389%, to $9,220,870. Quincy granite, a hornblende, pyroxene, bluish or greyish, without mica, was used for the construction of the Bunker Hill monument at Charlestown (in 1826), and of King's Chapel, Boston; and for interior decorations it has found some use, for example in the Philadelphia city buildings. Engines, and iron and steel ships are built at a shipyard 2 on the Fore river, and tubular rivets and studs, gearing, foundry products, and translucent fabrics are among the city's other products.

Since 1877 the Granite Cutters' Journal has been published here by the Granite Cutters' International Association of America. For a description of the granite quarried in the vicinity of Quincy, see T. N. Dale, The Chief Commercial Granites of Mass., New Hampshire and Rhode Island (Washington, 1908), Bulletin 354 of the U.S. Geol. Survey.

2 Here were built various vessels of the U.S. Navy, including the battleship "North Dakota." The site of the present city was settled in 1625 as Merry Mount or Mount Wollaston by Thomas Morton - the present Wollaston Heights is a part of the grant of 600 acres made in 1636 by the town of Boston to William Hutchinson, husband of Anne, the Antinomian, and was formerly known as Taylor's Hill. A Puritan settlement was made here in 1634. This first settled part of Braintree - a name given in 1640 to the community then organized - after 1708 was officially called the North Precinct of the Town of Braintree; here the Adamses and the Hancocks lived, and Quincy was the birthplace of John Hancock - in a house on Hancock lot lived the first Josiah Quincy; the Mount Wollaston farm was a legacy to John Quincy (1689-1767), in whose honour the township was named on its separation from the township of Braintree in 1792, and whose name was borne by his great grandson, John Quincy Adams. In 1826 a railway about 4 m. long to the Neponset river was built here - the first in New England - for carrying granite from the quarries to tide-water; the cars were drawn by horses. The township had previously been engaged in maritime pursuits, agriculture, and the manufacture of leather. Township government, owing to the abolition of the committee on general business and the consequent confusion of handling so many and minute details, and to the addition to the population of a large Irish element and a large New Hampshire element, both workmen in the quarries, reached the minimum of efficiency in 1840-1870; in 1870, however, the town-meetings were reformed, and in 1874 a committee to consider business details was again appointed. In 1888 Quincy was chartered as a city.

See "A Study of Church and Town Government," by C. F. Adams, in the second volume of his Three Episodes of Massachusetts History (Boston, 1892), for an admirable history of the community; his Centennial Milestone, an Address in Commemoration of the One Hundredth Anniversary of the Incorporation of Quincy, Mass. (Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1892); D. M. Wilson, Quincy, Old Braintree and Merry Mount (Boston, 1907), and Where American Independence Began (Boston, 1902); and D. M. Wilson and C. F. Adams, Col. John Quincy of Mount Wollaston, 1689-1767 (Quincy, 1909), published by the Quincy Historical Society, and containing addresses made at the celebration in February 1908 in honour of Col. Quincy; and W. S. Pattee, History of Old Braintree and Quincy (Quincy, 1878).

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