Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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COX, Lemuel, master mechanic, born in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1736; died in Charlestown, Massachusetts, 18 February, 1806. Until about the age of forty-five his life is hid in obscurity. At this time he was, on 29 December, 1775, imprisoned at Ipswich, because of his strong attachment to royalist principles. In 1786 began the first of his most prominent works by building the Boston and Charlestown bridge. Its length was 1,500 feet, its width 43 feet, and it was especially adapted to withstand the tidal currents and ice. its construction occupied but thirteen months. In 1787 he built the Essex bridge at Salem, which was nearly as large. His success with these and others built by him in Maine and Massachusetts caused him to be invited to direct the construction of the great bridge at Waterford, Ireland, in 1793. Mr. Cox was the inventor of a machine for cutting card-wire, the first projector of a powder-mill in Massachusetts, and the first to suggest employing the prisoners on Castle island to make nails. For these reasons and for various other discoveries in the mechanic arts a grant of 1,000 acres of land in Maine was made to him by an act of legislature.
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