It is unnecessary to spend words denying the position of Middlesex County in New England history, or to assert its preeminence over some of her sister counties of the commonwealth. The fact is that three separate counties in Massachusetts are entitled to the distinction of " historic counties," and to each of them belongs distinguished and peculiar honor for the parts they have severally borne in the civilization of New England, and in contributing to the patriotism, valor and intelligence of the century. The history is given in twenty-six divisions, beginning with the history of the Massachusetts Company, giving biographies of the leaders, their religious ideas and political ambitions; next treating of the Pequot and King Philip's wars; the period of historic transition from the Colonial to the Provincial government, and the events immediately preceding the Revolution. Naturally the interest in Mr. Drake's narrative centres in the great events attending the outhreak of the Revolution, and we accord high praise to his treatment of the battles of Lexington, Concord and Bunker Hill, the feeling of the country at the beginning of hostilities, and its condition after the investment of Boston.
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