1919 USA: Guildhall Railing

IMG_0173.jpg
photo by B.A. Cotton

Not long after the City Council of Boston, Massachusetts received the box made from a portion of the Guildhall Court rail, Alfred J. Ogston, acting British Counsel in Boston, presented a portion of the ancient oak balustrade the once stood in the Court Room of the old Guild Hall and before which some of the Pilgrim Fathers appeared in 1607.

Surprisingly, in 1918, George W. Coleman, President of the Boston Massachusetts City Council, found this relic being used as a backyard fence along the river in Boston Lincolnshire. He then suggested to A. Cook Yarborough, Mayor of Boston Lincolnshire, that it would be very fitting if he were able to send the rail to Boston Massachusetts. The following year, the Guildhall Court railing was sent to Boston Massachusetts and house in the Boston Public Library at Copley Square.

The inscription on the railing reads:

  • BEFORE THIS RAILING,
  • ONCE PART OF THE DOCK
  • IN THE GUILDHALL OF BOSTON,
  • LINCOLNSHIRE,
  • STOOD ON TRIAL IN 1607
  • SOME OF THE PILGRIM FATHERS

The gift of the City of Boston, England, 1919.

drawing of old guildhall court copy
sketch of the Guildhall Courtroom

 

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