THE MIDDLESEX TURNPIKE: Partner or Competitor to the Canal?

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Many of us learned in history class about the wooden plank road built in 1785 through the Cumberland Gap in Virginia. Few of us were taught that a flurry of turnpike building followed in the thirteen colonies, all built by private companies. All told, 118 turnpikes were completed in Massachusetts, most of which are still serving us in some way. The talk will cover the difficulties of travel, the contentious construction, and widespread use of the Middlesex Turnpike. 


Take a virtual journey over the complete route as it was built. See how it looked until the advent of the automobile in early 1900 and how it looks and serves today. You will learn that it was originally planned to go through the "flats" and bisect Winchester.


Free and open to the public.


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