In 1891, the moderator of Braintree's Town Meeting appointed a five-member committee to study the feasibility of bringing electric lighting to the town. As chairman of that group, Thomas A. Watson began compiling information on the subject. The committee reported back that Braintree was the only town along the Old Colony Railroad route from Boston to Scituate that did not have streetlights. Lack of electric lighting, the committee found, was the only negative to Braintree's continued expansion and development. It said the cost of a lighting system was a good investment, "sure to return dividends in increase of population and value of real estate."