CIVIL WAR BUS TOUR, with reference to Wayland Town Characters
The original tour organized by the Wayland Local Studies Center has been simplified in presentation. This revision links to several texts online that can be read or summarized at selected stops, and includes a Wayland map with home sites of Wayland Town Characters. The Town Characters section also has additional texts for those who want more details.
Some of the sites listed are pointed out enroute and viewed through the bus window. At designated stops, the bus pulls in to a safe parking place as civil war locations are pointed out and commentary is read. At both cemeteries students get out to seek gravestones of Wayland characters. At the Grout-Heard house students have their bag lunch and an activity, unless teachers plan for a separate day.
9:00 Begin at Town Center, rtes 20, 126 & 27 intersection
Stop 1 Unitarian Universalist Church by carriage sheds
of Wayland Center from Unitarian Church:
Alfred Wayland Cutting“Old-time Wayland” paints the Center scene when the Boston Post Rd (Rt. 20) turned North and West instead of today’s newer route. The stage coach tavern Cutting mentions was across the street where the Public Safety Building now stands.
Call to War: In April 1861 two meetings were held at the Unitarian Church to respond to war acts and call for troops.
9:10 South on Cochituate Road (27/126)
Stop 2 Trinitarian Congregational Church parking lot
Second church in Wayland Center,
Soldiers’ Aid Society: Both the Unitarian and Trinitarian Churches had women involved in the war effort and met in both churches.
Soldiers’ Relief Society: Citizens organized to assist the Wayland soldiers.
9:20 Lyon's Corner (27 to corner of Main and E. and W. Plain Sts.)
Stop 3 Lyons Corner, west side, Finnerty's parking lot
Background on Cochituate
9:25 Lokerville (Villa intersection of Rte 30, Villa parking lot )
Stop 4 Lokerville School site (in triangle)
Lokers were early landowners of part of the southern grants; also Damons and Jennisons.
Until 1873, the Lokerville School was the only school within walking distance for all Cochituate Village children. (site of brick ranch facing east toward triangle) In attendance during their youth would have been:
Next to the schoolhouse (probably where the triangle is now) was the Wesleyan Methodist Church.
Excerpt Lokerville Methodist Church:
9:30 E. Plain St. to Lyon's Corner then south on Main St. to Bentville
Š Dora Thurston Whitney was a member in 1870s but left
Š Other members: William Henry Garfield?
Š James Madison Bent?
Š Thomas Alfred Dean?
9:35 Bentville (corner of Rte 30 and Main St., pull over before corner)
No one else in the Bent family had the same success as James Madison. At the time of the Civil War he employed several hundred people and boasted the latest machinery.
We passed Shawmut, near the Methodist Church where son William’s house was located. With his brother and sons William brought the family into debt, requiring the factory’s sale to the Dean family.
Stop 5, James Madison Bent - Area of house site (NE corner - Cochituate Motors Sales); older family house site to SE, now a mall (Brooks Pharmacy); Bent Shoe Factory site (SW corner - small mall with Starbucks)
James Madison Bent, millowner
Reading on Bentville and Bent Shoe Factory:
of Cochituate center, formerly Bentville
9:40 West on Rte 30 (Lake Road in Civil War time) to Cochituate State Park gatehouse entrance on Right just past cemetery (main Park entrance over bridge in Natick)
Point out enroute
Stop 6 Lake Cochituate gatehouse driveway
Formerly Long Pond - becomes water source for Boston and given
Indian name; southern center renamed Cochituate .
Read excerpt about Lake
9:50 Rte 30 back to Lakeview Cemetery (left into cemetery, left around loop)
Stop 7 Cemetery walking tour: teacher has clues or diagram to assist students.
10:10 Pemberton to West Plain
Left at West Plain to Bent Ave. - turn right onto Bent Ave. to the Pond
Stop 8 Bent summer home site overlooking Dudley Pond (built after Civil War)
Excerpt on summer estate and boat Hannah Dexter
Hannah Dexter, a steam-powered boat fascinated Cochituate and local newspapers. Dudley Pond became a popular summer location. Next to Bent’s estate a wealthy carpet millowner, Simpson, age 73, built an imposing estate for his young bride. A widow before long, she sold the estate which become the Mansion Inn (resort burned down in 1956).
10:20 West Plain / Old Connecticut Path, and Cochituate Rd. North, back to Center
10:25 Through Center, Pass Grout-Heard House, turn R on Plain Rd to Mill Pond
(Note: Plain Rd. is in North Wayland, E and W Plain St. in South)
is best known for writing “It Came Upon A Midnight Clear” which he introduced in the Wayland church, but he wrote essays and hymns and
was an ardent supporter of the war and opponent of slavery.
read excerpts from sermon against slavery preached at Wayland Mass, Sunday, June 15, 1856
10:35 Plain Rd to Draper Rd. (point out several Draper homes)
10:40 Turn R on Plain Rd, L to Glen Rd,, stop at corner
Stop 10 Draper family:
Remind students of importance of this family in knowing about war perspectives (Frank Draper memoir) and town events (father James Sumner Draper editor of Memorial), including attitudes toward slavery and enlistment of blacks on the North side. Frank became a capt. of 39th Colored Infantry Regiment.
Read excerpt from Frank Draper about Petersburg battle in 1864 .
Turn R to Rte 20 west, view John Noyes Morse house on R (#202). This was built by his father and has been recently remodeled. JNMorse served in the 35th and saw much action, Looking back on his service, Morse was a proud veteran.
10:50 Town Center - north on Concord Road, L to Bow Rd,
Lydia Draper's house during war years (#47 Old Sudbury Rd - on hill NE corner Bow/Old Sudbury Rd). She lived here with widowed mother and boarder, Alfred Hudson, whom she married. He became minister, historian of local communities including Sudbury/Wayland.
Stop 11 Baldwin’s Pond - turn into Water Dept Baldwin’s Pond
Read from Cutting’s Childhood Memories re LM and David Child as neighbors and Baldwin's Pond for picnics
11:00 Old Sudbury Road south to North Cemetery
Stop 12 North Cemetery, teachers provide clues (map, markers?) in search for gravesites:
11:20 North Cemetery to Town Center
11:25 R on Pelham Island Rd
Brick School facing triangle 1808-1840 (now a salon and spa)
Stop 13 Charles Campbell house at # xx Pelham Island Rd. (Heard Family house)
We learned that uncle Wm. Heard took care of the Pelham Island farm (now conservation land of the town) while Charles went to war. Charles was over 40 with 4 children when he volunteered.
Excerpt from Campbell Biography re recruitment:
A great grandson of Charles, also named Charles Campbell, met the Wayland students and recalled old stories until his recent death. There is a Campbell room in the Grout-Heard house with family memorabilia.
Pelham Island was divided into four Heard farms at the time of the war, and two other original Heard houses are still standing. One was lived in by Rev. Edmund H. Sears’ descendents (the last house on the right before Heard’s Pond) where the original of “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” was discovered.
11:35 Pelham Island Road to Center, N. on Concord Rd to Grout-Heard House
(lunch and afternoon lesson or back to school)
14 The Grout-Heard House
was on its present location at the time of the Civil War.
It is fitting that the tour ends at the Grout-Heard house where most of the Civil War materials for the town are preserved and interpreted. Students will complete their preparations for the Reunion in the afternoon half of this field trip or on a separate day.
Bus Tour map of Civil War Home Sites