British Soldiers Quartered Here Among the Tories.
Nathl Ray Thomas, who built and occupied the manison before the Revolution, afterwards the residence of the Hon. Daniel Webster, was in direct line from Wm. Thomas, one of the first settlers of Marshfield. Mr. Thomas was a royalist. He was one of Gage's Madamus Councillors" (so called, because they were appointed to hold office during his pleasure, in place of being chosen annually by the popular assembly, as had been the method under the first charter).
"When affairs" says Bacon, "grew threatening, he went to Boston, there joined the British army and sailed off with it, on the evacuation, to Halifax, never to return. He built his mansion house in or about 1774, and it was the scene of a little affair which might have had large consequences had not a certain British officer displayed that discretion which we are told is the better part of valor. This affair happened in Marshfield shortly after the Lexington-Concord outbreak. A detachment of British troops called the 'Queen's Guards,' under Capt. Balfour, were quartered here in Mr. Thomas's mansion (now known as the 'Webster estate'), sent down from Boston, by Gage, at the request of the Loyalists of Marshfield and neighborhood, who feared trouble with the Patriots. In this house wine closets were constructed in the cellar by this British officer, Capt. Balfour, for the use of himself and officers, and were in existence until the house was burned a quarter of a century or more ago." Webster used them, let us hope, not too freely.
"The presence of the troops in the Old Colony was resented, and when the news of Lexington and Concord came,
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