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'Minutemen' Set to Guard Sycamores


Seven Cambridge "Minutemen" began yesterday a dawn patrol to prevent a surprise attack on the Memorial Drive sycamores by the Metropolitan District Commission.

The seven, members of the Citizens Emergency Committee to save Memorial Drive in Cambridge, plan to alarm the townspeople if MDC hatchetmen attempt to cut down the trees.

"We'll begin by picketing peacefully," explained Edward L. Bernays, co-chairman of the Committee. "But if the MDC tries to tear down the trees, we'll stretch out in front of their trucks," Bernays said.

John R. Moot '43, the other co-chairman, expects the MDC to transplant ninety trees and tear down seven this fall.

The Minutemen intend to delay the destruction of the area until January, when they will seek legislation to halt construction of three underpasses on the Drive. "The trees," Moot said, "are only symbolic of the recreation space being destroyed and the taxpayers money being wasted."

Donald C. Byron '54, the first Minuteman to stand by the trees, began his watch at 5 a.m. yesterday morning. Byron "found his job rather pleasant and quiet. "I'm sorry it was cloudy so I couldn't see the sun rise," he said. "Nothing happened, thank God."

The Minutemen are finding various hours when Bernays and Moot expect ways to while away the long cold hours between sunrise and 7 a.m., the MDC to strike because there is little traffic on the Drive and few people besides Minutemen around. Malcolm E. Peaboy, Jr. '50 runs. Sheldon Diets '41 writes poetry.

Unlike their predecessors, the Concord Minutemen of 1775, the embattled businessmen standing by the rude Weeks Bridge will not fire a warning shot. They will run to Ellot House and blow a whistle to awake Mrs. Finley, who will alert volunteers by telephone. Mrs. Finley thinks it would be a shame "if the trees were chopped down while we lay in our beds anug and warm."

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