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|would come from the Merrimack River, taken at
an inlet station above Pawtucket Falls on the Pawtucketville shore.
Legislation was passed stating that Lowell could take any water and make
use of any land in Pawtucketville in order to supply the city with healthy
In an address of 1871, in which he urged the construction of a new iron bridge at Pawtucket Falls, Mayor Edward Sherman also said:
A petition will be presented to the Legislature asking for the annexation of a portion of Dracut to Lowell, the area to include the entire line of the Water Works ... the romantic and attractive locality will demand a large share of our attention.
In 1870, a system to purify the water of the Merrimack River by means of natural filtration was implemented. The filter gallery was located in Pawtucketville above the Dam. Water quality became an issue again in 1889. The City of Lowell decided that the solution to its need for water would be driven wells dug on ancient farmlands that had once belonged to the Varnum and Coburn families. By 1895, there were hundreds of driven wells in West Pawtucketville. These wells, along with some on River Meadow Brook supplied all of Lowell's water by February of 1897. The wells of Pawtucketville numbered 479 by 1918.
In conjunction with the new wells, an initiative was launched to establish a driving park or riverfront boulevard in West Pawtucketville. According to a Lowell Evening Citizen article of May, 1889:
Citizens will present the city forty acres of land ... what a magnificent stretch of land will be opened up ... the country in all its freshness and beauty… It made accessible to homeseekers a region of farms extending from Varnum Avenue to the river.
Two Communities Become One
Their relations to our people have been so intimate and constant that the transition will scarcely need to be celebrated in any ceremonious way...
Once annexation had been finalized, changes proceeded
rapidly. Pawtucketville had only two schoolhouses. The Varnum
Avenue Schoolhouse, built in 1755, was the last school in Lowell where
students ranging from 5 to 16 years were all taught in one room. The Mammoth
Road School was also
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