To learn how this map can be used in the classroom click here
While most bird's eye views depict only one community, or may include a smaller inset of a neighboring village, this one is very unusual. It consists of three separate views of equal size on a single sheet of paper. To make the composition more intriguing, the three villages are not viewed with the same orientation.
The view shows the neighboring villages of Cliftondale, Saugus, and East Saugus, all in the town of Saugus. The former is viewed from the west, while the other two are viewed from the east. Despite the disparate perspectives, the railroad displayed prominently in each view provides a unifying element. The same line passed through all three villages. In traveling north from Boston, the first village encountered was Cliftondale, followed by Saugus and East Saugus.
Although the Saugus area was first settled in the early 17th century, the township was not established until 1815. At that time, the town's economy was agricultural. When this view was published, an extensive directory listed many churches, public buildings, and commercial businesses within the three communities. There were also several factories, with two woolen manufacturers located in Saugus and five leather and shoe manufacturers in East Saugus. One of the prominent attractions in Cliftondale was the Old Saugus Race Course, a harness racing track which operated from 1870 to 1905.