That was then:
This is now:
The recently-razed house at 121 Lexington Street was home to Jonathan Simonds, a revered man in town.
- At age 23, he fought in Lexington and Concord.
- He served on the town’s first board of assessors, school committee and board of selectmen.
- He also served as a tythingman for five years, in Burlington’s seminal church near the common. A what? A tythingman maintained order in church, sometimes using corporal punishment! He carried a fancy pole that had a feather on one end and a brass knob on the other. If anyone was sleeping, oh tisk tisk tisk. Males received a rap on the head with the brass knob. Females received the ticklish feather under the chin. Don’t laugh. The church was extremely important in early America, so you had to be a very well-respected member of the community to even dream of becoming a tythingman.
- He eventually become deacon in the church.
- By 1821, Jonathan’s 93-acre property was valued at $2,042.00, a sum exceeded only by the farms of Jotham Johnson, William Kendall, Ishmael Munroe, James Reed, Thomas Skelton, Abel Winn and Sylvanus Wood.
More recently, the attached apartment (125 Lexington Street) this was home to Priscilla Kilgore, head of the Burlington high school art department, and Kathi Horton, a longtime teacher in Burlington schools. Kathi wrote this ode to the house: