“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Arlington in Middlesex County, Massachusetts — The American Northeast (New England)

Captain Cooke’s Mill Lane

1630 – 1930

Captain Cooke’s Mill Lane Marker image. Click for full size.
By Roger W. Sinnott, June 2, 2011
1. Captain Cooke’s Mill Lane Marker
Inscription.  The road to Captain Cooke’s grist mill, built in 1638; the first water mill in this vicinity.
Erected 1930 by the Massachusetts Bay Colony Tercentenary Commission.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Colonial EraRoads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the Massachusetts Bay Colony—Tercentenary Commission Markers series list.
Location. 42° 24.965′ N, 71° 9.281′ W. Marker is in Arlington, Massachusetts, in Middlesex County. Marker is at the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue (U.S. 3) and Water Street, on the right when traveling west on Massachusetts Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Arlington MA 02474, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Old Men of Menotomy (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Whittemore Park (about 600 feet away); Samuel Whittemore (about 600 feet away); House of John Cutter (approx. 0.2 miles away); Jason Russell House (approx. 0.2
View down Water Street image. Click for full size.
By Roger W. Sinnott, June 2, 2011
2. View down Water Street
miles away); Cooper’s Tavern (approx. 0.2 miles away); Arlington Reservoir (approx. 1.3 miles away); The Foot of the Rocks (approx. 1.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Arlington.
Regarding Captain Cooke’s Mill Lane. Capt. George Cooke lived in what is now Arlington, Massachusetts, from 1635 to 1645. Here he owned more than 500 acres and built his water-powered grist mill. After returning to England, he served as an officer in Oliver Cromwell’s army and died during a battle in Ireland in 1652.

The mill no longer exists, but the History of the Town of Arlington (Boston, 1880) by Benjamin and William R. Cutter makes clear how important it was to the local economy (see the link below). Note that in the 17th century Arlington was known by other names, such as Menotomy or West Cambridge. What was originally called Captain Cooke’s “mill-lane” is Water Street today.
Also see . . .
1. History of Arlington. This 1880 book contains numerous references to Capt. George Cooke and his mill, beginning on page 6. (Submitted on June 2, 2011, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts.) 

2. Tercentenary Commission. Original 1930 publication by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Tercentenary
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Commission, commemorating the 300th anniversary of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. (Submitted on June 2, 2011, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts.) 

3. Arlington Historical Society. The Arlington Historical Society was founded amidst rapid residential development in what had been a quiet agricultural town. The purposes of the Society are to (1) promote and encourage the knowledge of the history of the Town of Arlington and the preservation of its antiquities, (2) disseminate historical information in the Town and elsewhere, (3) preserve and operate the Jason Russell House, the Smith Museum, and The Society's collections and (4) engage in other activities as may be permitted by the Articles of Organization when deemed useful by the Board of Directors of the Society. (Submitted on November 6, 2011, by Russell Chaffee Bixby of Bernardston, Massachusetts.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on June 2, 2011, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. This page has been viewed 776 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on June 2, 2011, by Roger W. Sinnott of Chelmsford, Massachusetts. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 1, 2021