Dorchester Illustration 2318 Axel W. Lagerquist

2318 Axel Lagerquist

Dorchester Illustration no. 2318        Axel  W. Lagerquist

 

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I. Using a collection of photographs we have of WWI Dorchester residents, we will be featuring servicemen and women in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and women and their service to our country.

Our next biography features:Axel W. Lagerquist

Axel Wilhelm Lagerquist was born 23 March 1890 in Hjalmseryd, in the Jonkoping region of Sweden which is in the Province of Smaland. Parent’s names are unknown. Axel immigrated to the United States in 1908. He was 18 years old when he left his father, G. Lagerquist, whom he listed as his nearest relative.  He traveled by train to Gottenburg, Sweden. He left Sweden on 28 September 1908 by boat to Hull, England where he would take a train to Liverpool.  He sailed on 8 October 1908 from Liverpool & Queenstown on the Lusitania (about 1 year after her maiden voyage) and arrived in New York on 10 October 1908 destined for Newton, Mass. Several years later on 23 February 1911, he filed his Declaration of Intention to become a U.S. citizen.

By June 5, 1917, when Axel registered for the Draft, he was 27 years old, married and living on Norfolk St., Dorchester.  He was a manager of a grocery store, J. T. Connor Co., 2249 Dorchester Ave., Milton and the sole support of his wife. He was tall and slender with blue eyes and blonde hair. His place of birth was listed as Jonkoping, Sweden.

He enlisted in R.A.N.G.E.R.C. and was inducted at Division #21, Boston, Mass. on March29, 1918 at age 28 at Camp Devens. He served in Company C, 303 MG Battalion, until November 7, 1918 and Company C, 148 MG Battalion until discharge. He became Private First Class on July 1, 1918 and Corporal on August 23, 1918. He filed his Petition for Naturalization on 5 June 1918 and then served overseas from July 10, 1918 until June 29, 1919. He was honorably discharged at Camp Mills, Long Island, New York, on July 7, 1919.

On his Petition for Naturalization signed at Camp Devens, he listed his spouse as Esther J. Lagerquist, born in Lamhult (Lammhult), Sweden, on 1 November 1889. He is listed as being born in Lamhult also which is in the same area as listed above, so perhaps they knew each other in the old country. They were listed living on Norfolk St., Mattapan and had a daughter born 1 June 1918. His occupation was listed as “soldier-merchant”.

In the 1920 census, the family consisted of Axel, Esther and daughter Ruth on Dorchester Ave., Boston. He was again listed as a manager of grocery store. In 1923, Axel became a member of the Macedonian Lodge of the Masons.

In 1930 and 1940 census, the family of 3 was living on Wendell Pak East, Milton, Mass. and Axel owned his business.

In 1942, Axel registered for the Draft at age 52. He lived on Dyer Ave, Milton and was his own employer at 1168 Washington St., Dorchester. His wife, Esther, was listed as his next of kin.

On 1 June 1949, Axel remarried to Janet Frances Bates and on 13 March 1956, he changed his Masonic affiliation to Wellesley, Mass.

On 6 November 1969, Axel died at age 79. He was living on Prospect St., Wellesley Hills, Mass. He was survived by his daughter Mrs. Joseph (Ruth) McCann of Norwood and 2 grandchildren. A Masonic service was held at the Waterman Chapel, 592 Washington St., Wellesley.

Do you know more about Axel Lagerquist? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers  at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing! You can reach us through the contact box at the bottom of the Dorchester Historical Society’s home page on its website www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org.

References:

Passenger List, 1908, Ancestry.com

Draft Registration, WW1 & WW11, FamilySearch.com

Naturalization Record, Ancestry.com

U.S. Census Records, 1920, 1930, 1940, FamilySearch.com

Mason Member Card, Ancestry.com

Death Record, 1969, FamilySearch.com

Obituary, Boston Globe, 7 Nov 1969

Service Record, Military Museum, Concord, MA

Dr. Perkins’ notes

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Dorchester Illustration 2317 Ralph Stevens Bissett

2317 Randolph S Bissett

Dorchester Illustration no. 2317       Ralph Stevens Bissett

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I. Using a collection of photographs we have of WWI Dorchester residents, we will be featuring servicemen and women in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and women and their service to our country.

Our next biography features: Ralph Stevens Bissett

Ralph was born on October 19, 1899 to Albert Bissett and Georgie Ellen (Stevens) of Falcon Street in East Boston. His father was born in St. John, New Brunswick and was a painter (listed as house decorator). His mother was born in Portland, Maine. In 1900, there were three Bissett families living at the same address or next door which included Albert’s brothers, sister and mother.

By 1910, the Bissett families had moved. Ralph was an only child at age 10 living with his parents on Temple Street in West Roxbury.  His uncles, aunt, and grandmother had moved to Stoughton and Malden.

According to Dr. Perkins in 1917, Ralph was living on Branch Street in Dorchester. He enlisted May 10, 1917, in the Harvard University Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) and then re-enlisted at Camp Devens on September 17, 1917 (Camp Devens was established in 1917 and didn’t become Fort Devens until 1931). He served in the 302nd Field Artillery of the American Expeditionary Forces (AEF) as a musician, first class, Headquarters Company; his photograph from Dr. Perkins shows him holding a clarinet.

In 1920, Ralph was again living with his parents on Branch Street and was listed as an electrical inspector. In 1925, he became a member of the Macedonian Lodge of the Massachusetts Masons. His occupation was listed as musician and Northeast District Manager of the White Rock Corporation, one of the largest producers of mineral water in the U.S. at the time. He married about 1928 to Charlotte Josephine Anderson and they were living with Ralph’s parents in 1930. Ralph was listed in the census as a “WW veteran” and a beverage salesman. The census indicates the house was owned and the family owned a radio set. By 1932, Ralph and Charlotte moved to Roosevelt Road in Weymouth. They had one child, Joan, around 1936.

By 1961, the family was living again in Dorchester on Branchfield Street. Ralph’s occupation was listed as “president,” but we are unsure of what this refers to. He retired by 1965 and was living in Clearwater, Florida when he died on May 8, 1969. Services were held Monday, May 12, 1969 from the Deware Brothers Memorial Chapel on Hancock Street in Quincy.

Do you know more about Ralph Stevens Bissett? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers  at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing! You can reach us through the contact box at the bottom of the Dorchester Historical Society’s home page on its website www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org.

 

References:

Birth Record 1899: Familysearch.org

Census Records, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940: Familysearch.org

City Directories, Weymouth 1932, 1941; Quincy 1955, 1961; Boston, 1965; Ancestry.com

Death notice: Boston Globe, May 10, 1969

Massachusetts Mason Membership Card: Ancestry.com

 

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Dorchester Illustration 2316 Morgan Brothers Creamery

2316 Morgan Bros. 238 Bowdoin Street

Dorchester Illustration no. 2316    Morgan Brothers Creamery

Some of us are old enough to remember glass milk bottles with cardboard tops.

The Dorchester Historical Society has acquired a quart-sized milk bottle from the Morgan Brothers Creamery.

Their store was located at 238 Bowdoin Street.  The building is gone, and the site  now makes up part of the parking lot of the Bowdoin Street Health Center.

The illustration of the store comes from the Official Program of the Dorchester Day celebration, Saturday, June 5, 1915.

 

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Dorchester Illustration 2315 Harry Erving Morrissey

2315 Harry Erving Morrisey

Dorchester Illustration no. 2315    Harry Erving Morrissey

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100-year anniversary of World War 1. Using a collection of photographs we have of World War 1 Dorchester residents, we will be featuring servicemen and women in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and women and their service to our country.

Our next biography features Harry E. Morrissey:

Harry Morrissey (he also signed his name “Morrisey”) was an immigrant, born  January 31, 1890, in Waterford, New Brunswick. He arrived by train with his mother Mary and three older siblings in Boston on April 15, 1906, a young man of medium height, dark complexion, with black hair and blue eyes. His statement on the border crossing registration was “no relatives in Canada,” so his father may have been deceased.  He gave his full name and his occupation as plumber, a trade he followed throughout his life. Their original address was on Hamilton Street in Dorchester, where his mother is listed as head of household.

Harry registered for the WWI draft on June 5, 1917, having announced his intention to become a US citizen. At that time, he had already married Catherine V. McGuire and had two children, living on Mattapan Street in Mattapan. He served with the American Expeditionary Force, QMC, Chief Purchasing Office.

By 1920, they lived on Cypress Road, Brighton, with three daughters and two sons. By 1930, he had remarried to a woman named Margaret Costello, with whom he had a daughter and son.

At the time of the the WWII draft, Harry was working for J.P. Landers, plumbers, on Bowdoin St., Dorchester, and living on Torrey St., Dorchester. There’s no evidence he was called to serve in that war. He died May 2, 1972, while living in Dorchester. His funeral was at St. Ambrose in Dorchester and he is buried in Braintree.  He was survived by 27 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren.

Do you know more about Harry E. Morrissey? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing! You may contact us through the Dorchester Historical Society website in the box at the bottom of the home screen www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org

References:

Ancestry.com:

Massachusetts State and Federal Naturalization record, 15 April 1906.

US Border Crossings from Canada to U.S., 1825-1960

US Draft registration, WWI, WWII

US Census, 1910, 1920, 1930, 1940

 

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Dorchester Illustration 2314 Harold Frederick and Joseph Ralph Bradshaw

2314 Joseph Ralph Bradshaw and Harold Frederick Bradshaw

Dorchester Illustration no. 2314    Harold Frederick and Joseph Ralph Bradshaw

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I. Using a collection of photographs we have of WWI Dorchester residents, we will be featuring service men and women in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and women and their service to our country.

Our next biography features: Harold Frederick and Joseph Ralph Bradshaw, brothers born in different countries; the picture of the brothers was taken in France.

Harold and Joseph (J.R.) were born to Frederick W. Bradshaw and Susan Winters. Frederick was a laborer born in St. Martin’s, New Brunswick and Susan was born in Liverpool, Nova Scotia.

Harold, the first child, was born in Liverpool, N.S. on November 1, 1896 and J.R., the second child, was born April 20, 1898. The family was living on Pope’s Hill St., Dorchester.

In 1900, they lived on Dickens St. in Dorchester and the boys have a younger sister, Edna. Their father is listed as a mill sawyer. He had immigrated to U.S. in 1891 and their mother immigrated with son Harold, on May 1, 1897. As their mother, Susan may have done some visiting in Nova Scotia, she is found on a passenger list as Mrs. Frederick Bradshaw with her 3 children on the ship “Prince Arthur”. They left Yarmouth, N.S. and arrived in Boston on October 11, 1900.

In 1910, the family is residing on Arcadia St. Dorchester. The father is listed as a carpenter at a refrigeration facility.  By 1917, the family is living on Neponset Ave., Dorchester.

Harold enlisted in the Army on June 1, 1917 at age 20, at Base Hospital #6, A.E.F. located at Mass General Hospital, Boston, MA.  He is listed as Private 1st Class on Army Transport Service Passenger List 1910-1939. He departed New York on the ship “Aurania” and arrived with his Military Unit: Enl Med Res Corps, July 10, 1917. He was an orderly in Bordeaux, France; he served overseas from July 11, 1917 to March 24 1919 as a nurse and a cook. Harold filed petition for naturalization at the Base Hospital in France on November 6, 1918 and was released from service on June 7, 1919. He had been honorably discharged on April 9, 1919 on demobilization at Camp Devens.

Joseph enlisted in the Navy June 1, 1917 at age 19. He trained at Newport, R.I. and Portsmouth, N.H. and was assigned to USS Michigan, September 8, 1917 thru November 30, 1917 and USS Western Hero Battleship as a gunner from November 30, 1917 thru November 11, 1918. He was overseas several times. He was discharged as a Seaman on July 7, 1919.

By 1929, both sons are home, back on Neponset Ave., Harold a student rubber maker at a tire factory and Joseph a machinist at an arsenal.

On April 18, 1923, Harold married Gertrude M. Bohm in Detroit, Michigan. He was a fireman and she a stenographer. By 1930, they had one son, Harold F. Jr. and the census taker commented he was “In war against Germany”.

Joseph was boarding at Sanford St., Dorchester, and was managing a grocery store. He married about 1935 to Doris and by 1940, lived at Elliot Ave., Quincy and had 2 children, Beverly and Phyllis.

In 1942, Harold, age 46 registered for the draft, WWII. He lived on Penrose St., Detroit, MI. He was an employee of the Detroit Fire Department, Wayne & Larned, Detroit, MI. His son, Harold F. Bradshaw, Jr. served in WWII. He was a Private who is listed in the Michigan Casualties of World War as a POW January 13, 1945 and was freed on June 13, 1945.

Harold was issued his Social Security in Michigan 1956-58 and had retired to Florida with his wife by 1960. He lived on Camellia Drive OBTS, Daytona Beach, Daytona, FL. He died August 11, 1979, at 82, then living at Ormand Beach, Volusia, FL

Joseph was issued his Social Security in Massachusetts 1961-62 and spent time in Florida because he died in Pompano Beach, Broward County, FL, on October 23, 1980, at age 82. His residence was given as Moultonboro, N.H. He is buried at Blue Hills Cemetery, Braintree, MA.

Do you know more about the Bradshaw brothers? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers  at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing!  Contact us through the contact box at the lower left of our home page www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org

References:

Birth, Marriage and Death Records (Familysearch.com and Ancestry.com)

Death notice, Boston Globe, October 25, 1980

Military Records, Archives-Museum, Office of Adjutant General, Concord, MA

Naturalization Record (Ancestry.com)

Passenger List (Ancestry.com)

Social Security Death Index (Ancestry.com)

U.S. Census Records, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930  (Familysearch.com)

U.S. City Directory (Ancestry.com)

WWII Draft Registration Card and Michigan Casualties List (Ancestry.com)

 

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Dorchester Illustration 2313 John Joseph Cheever

2313 Cheever, J.J.

Dorchester Illustration no. 2313      John Joseph Cheever

J.J. Cheever – 1924.0001.021

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I. Using a collection of photographs we have of WWI Dorchester residents, we will be featuring servicemen in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and their service to our country.

Our next biography features:  J.J. Cheever

The index card for Cheever reads: Lieut., 15 Fairmount St, Officers Unit No 1 Camp J. E. Johnston, Jacksonville, Florida.

John Joseph “J.J.” Cheever was born in South Boston in 1886 to parents John and Mary Cheever, both Irish immigrants. He married Elizabeth Earle in June of 1912 and had their first child, Dorothy, the following year. When we see John registering for the draft in 1917, he is already 30 years old and married with a wife and two young children, Dorothy (4) and John (2).

After the war, in the 1920 United States Census, John is listed as renting a house on Fairmount Street in Dorchester’s Codman Hill neighborhood and living with his wife Elizabeth and their three young children: Dorothy (7), John Jr.(5), and Elizabeth (6 months). His occupation is listed as owning his own business.

In 1930, John is still living in the same neighborhood, but now renting a house on Washington Street. The United States Census now lists his occupation as a furniture salesman and indicates that he is a veteran of World War I.

From the census records and business directory records, it looks as though the family moved around quite a bit but always stayed in the same Codman Hill neighborhood of Dorchester. The 1943 business directory lists the Cheever family living on Armandine Street and their adult children living with them with Dorothy and John Jr. having occupations listed – Dorothy as a stenographer and John Jr. as a guard.

John Jr. would go on to serve in the United States Army as well but would be killed in action while serving with the 36th Armored Infantry in Germany during World War II. Tragically, John’s wife, Elizabeth, died only a week later.

John died on November 26, 1951 at the age of 65. His obituary refers to him as a “well known political figure” and a veteran of World War I, serving in the Transportation Corps. Before his death, he was working in the Boston Public Works Department.

Do you know more about J.J. Cheever? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing!  Contact us through the contact box at the lower left of our home page www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org

Sources

Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2010.

Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2002.

Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2012.

Ancestry.com. Massachusetts Birth Records, 1840-1915 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2013.

Ancestry.com. Massachusetts, Death Index, 1901-1980 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2013.

Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2011.

“John J. Cheever” obituary, Boston Globe, 28 Nov 1951.

“Pfc John J. Cheever Jr.” obituary, Boston Globe, 21 Mar 1949.

Check out the Dorchester Historical Society’s online catalog at

http://dorchester.pastperfectonline.com/

The archive of these historical posts can be viewed on the blog at www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org

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Dorchester Illustration 2312 Wilbur George Ashcroft

2312 Wilbur George Ashcroft

Dorchester Illustration no. 2312      Wilbur George Ashcroft  

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of World War I. Using a collection of photographs we have of WWI Dorchester residents, we will be featuring service men and women in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and women and their service to our country.

Our next biography features: Wilbur George Ashcroft

Wilbur George Ashcroft was born on July 7, 1897, on Bearse Avenue, Dorchester to Richard and Caroline (Carrie Williams) Ashcroft. His father was born in Canada, the child of parents who were born in Ireland; he was a mill operative. Caroline was born in England.

By 1910, Wilbur was one of 4 children, an older brother Alvin and 2 younger siblings, Myrtle (Marie) and Stanley. Their father Richard was a chocolate maker at the chocolate mill.

On April 4, 1917, at age 19, Wilbur enlisted in the Army at the South Armory, mustered on April 7, 1917 with 11th Co. N.G.C.A.C. (National Guard Coast Artillery Corps) and called to Federal Services July 25, 1917. He reported to Ft. Andrews July 28, 1917 and was detailed to Fore River for guard duty October 12, 1917. He was Private First Class as of January 1, 1918. His overseas duty was with Battery B, 55th Artillery Regiment C.A.C. He arrived Liverpool, England on April 2, 1918, La Havre, France on April 8, 1918 and was at the front July 30, 1918 to November 1918. He was engaged in the offensive at Oise-Aisne and Meuse-Argonne and in the defensive at Vesle (Champagne). He sailed for home January 11, 1919 and arrived back in the U.S. on January 22, 1919. He was honorably discharged on February 6, 1919.

In 1920, the whole family is together on Bearse Avenue. Wilbur was a machinist and his brother Alvin was a chocolate maker.  Around this time, Wilbur became a member of the Massachusetts Masons in the Macedonian Lodge, A.F. & A.M., Milton. There he received a Veteran’s Medal in 1970.

Sometime about 1920, Wilbur married Linda (Matott) and by 1930 they had 3 children, Richard N., Georgina M. and Ruth M. They lived on Bearse Ave.

Wilbur still lived on Bearse Ave., when he retired in 1974 and was listed as a millwright. He died on March 19, 1977 at about age 80, having lived his whole life in the same house.  He had 11 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. He is buried at Cedar Grove Cemetery, Dorchester.

Do you know more about Wilbur George Ashcroft? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers  at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing!

References:

Birth and Death Records (Familysearch.com and Vital Statistics, Mt. Vernon St., Dorchester)

Boston City Directory (Ancestry.com)

Death notice, Boston Globe, March 20, 1977

Massachusetts Mason Membership Card (Ancestry.com)

Military Records, Archives-Museum Branch, Office of Adjutant General, Concord, MA

U.S. Census Records, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930 (Familysearch.com)

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Dorchester Illustration 2311 Ray A Campbell

2311 Ray A Campbell

Ray Alexander Campbell -1924.0001.015

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100-year anniversary of World War 1. Using a collection of photographs we have of World War 1 Dorchester residents, we will be featuring servicemen in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and their service to our country.

Our next biography features Ray A. Campbell:

Ray was born April 13, 1893 in Boston to David B. and Lavinia M. Campbell, both of whom had immigrated from Nova Scotia, Canada. In 1910, he lived with his parents and siblings on Hillside Terrace in Dorchester. His father was a carpenter and his mother a homemaker.  He had three older sisters and two younger brothers. At age 17, he worked in the cement industry. He’s described as being of medium height and build, with brown hair and gray eyes.

He enlisted Dec. 26, 1917 and served with the Aviation Force in France as a Carpenter’s Mate 2nd Class. The photo shows him in naval uniform. The Naval Aviation Force predated the modern Air Force.

On returning from the war, he married Sarah Adams Boyle, known as Sadie, on July 3, 1919. They apparently lived with his parents on Clermont Street in the Ashmont neighborhood of Dorchester, but later bought a home on Sawyer Avenue in Savin Hill. They had two sons, Ray A., Jr., and  John R., and Sadie’s brother William also lived with them.

Ray died November 24, 1957, while living on Franklin Road in Lexington. Services were held at his home.

Do you know more about Ray A. Campbell? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing!

References:

Ancestry.com:

US Federal Census, 1910, 1920, 1930

US WWI Draft registration, 1917-1918

 

Check out the Dorchester Historical Society’s online catalog at

http://dorchester.pastperfectonline.com/

The archive of these historical posts can be viewed on the blog at www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org

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Dorchester Illustration of the Day 2310 Fred C. Gilpatric, Jr.

2310 Fred C. Gilpatric, Jr.

Dorchester Illustration no. 2310       Fred C. Gilpatric

Fred C. Gilpatric – 1924.0001.018

At the Dorchester Historical Society, we are in the process of a year-long project to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of World War I. Using a collection of photographs we have of World War I Dorchester residents, we will be featuring service men and women in a number of short biographies throughout the year. At the culmination of the project, we hope to produce an online exhibit which highlights these men and women and their service to our country.

Our next biography features: Fred C. Gilpatric, Jr.

Fred Cook Gilpatric, Jr. was born on March 8, 1897 to Fred and Flora May Gilpatric, and he appears to have been their only child. At the time of his birth, and for his childhood, the Gilpatrics made their home on Richmond Street in the Lower Mills neighborhood of Dorchester. Fred’s father, Fred Sr., was a lawyer in Downtown Boston, listed in the Boston City Directory as working on Court Street as well as Pemberton Square.

Fred graduated from Boston Latin School in 1914 and went on to study at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire. He was set to graduate in 1919 but never would; he was chosen for military service after enlisting on June 5 ,1918. Interestingly, Dr. Nathaniel R. Perkins is listed as the registrar on his draft registration card. His draft card describes him as a young man of “medium height and build, light blue eyes, and dark brown hair.”

Fred did not serve very much time in the military as he was stricken with influenza pneumonia and never recovered. On September 27, 1918, Fred died at the Base Hospital in Camp Lee, Virginia while he was still in officer training school. His death certificate lists him as a “soldier, private in Company 26, Central Officers Training.” He is buried in Dorchester at Cedar Grove Cemetery, and his grave is marked with a stone that reads: “Our Soldier Boy.” Dr. Perkins notes on his index card for Fred, “ This young man had brilliant prospects in the future but he answered his country’s call and made the supreme sacrifice.”

In 1920, the Old Dorchester Post honored Fred and three other young Dorchester men who died during World War I, by dedicating street squares in their names. The square at Adams and Milton Streets was renamed Fred C. Gilpatric Square and dedicated in a ceremony held on November 21, 1920.

Do you know more about Fred C. Gilpatric? We would love to hear from you! All material has been researched by volunteers at the Dorchester Historical Society, so please let us know if we got something wrong or you think a piece of the story is missing!

Check out the Dorchester Historical Society’s online catalog at

http://dorchester.pastperfectonline.com/

The archive of these historical posts can be viewed on the blog at www.dorchesterhistoricalsociety.org

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Dorchester Illustration 2309 Adams Corner

2309 Adams Corner circa 1880

Dorchester Illustration no. 2309           Adams Corner circa 1877

The Dorchester Historical Society has received a set of three photographs from descendants of the Pierce family.

This photo came in three parts. The three photos appear to have been separate, mounted on card backing.  It looks as if someone cut the card backing to allow the photos to be set side by side to create the wide landscape view that we have been able to achieve by scanning each one separately and combining the panels using Photoshop.  A rough edge on the left panel indicates that there may once have been another panel to the very left.

The photo shows Adams corner between 1874 and 1882, before Gallivan Boulevard was created and when Marsh Street was a faint impression on the landscape leading toward the houses in the distance.  The photographer was probably standing on Pierce land on the south side of what is now Beaumont Street up on the hill, somewhere about 53 to 71 Beaumont Street – in their backyards down toward Westmoreland Street, which did not exist at the time.

Adams Street runs horizontally from left to right, turning the corner around the coal gas building, continuing a block and passing the entrance to Malvern Street (now Millbrook Street), which extends vertically at the right side of the composite photo.  Marsh Street runs from behind the coal gas round-house toward the houses in the distance.  Granite Avenue runs diagonally to the right from that same intersection.  The 1874 map indicates that the round house was owned by the Dorchester Gas Light Company, and continues to appear on the maps through 1910.  Coal gas was used for illumination for street lights and residential and commercial buildings.  The 1918 map shows the round house as a garage owned by Bernard Murphy.

The street extending from Adams Street in the center at an angle going off toward the left is Minot Street.  Notice that on the near side of Adams Street between Minot Street and the coal gas house is a small stream that became larger as it went under Adams Street.  This is the beginning of Davenport’s Creek leading to the Neponset River.  A part of this stream is visible today as a gully on Hallett Street between the Firefighter’s Credit Union and the car dealership on the corner of Gallivan, although that location is not in this photo.  I am told that the basements of houses along Minot Street are sometimes quite damp due to this underground stream.  Between 1910 and 1918 the stream was capped from Adams Street to Ross Road.  Between 1918 and 1933 the stream was capped as far as Hallet Street, probably as part of the construction of Gallivan Boulevard in the late 1920s.

The house in center in the distance is the S.S Pierce property whose site is now occupied by St. Brendan’s Church.  The buildings in the left of the picture on the near side of Adams Street were the property of Thomas Pierce in 1874 and George Pierce in 1884.

On the 1874 map, the stream on the near side of Adams Street is visible, but Minot Street on the near side of Adams Street is only a proposed street. The bottom center of the photo shows a definite street on the near side of Adams and the upper portion of houses, so it would seem the photo is after 1874.  The 1882 map shows Minot Street on near side of Adams Street, but the stream is no longer visible on the near side of Adams, so the stream must have been covered over in that eight year period. Therefore it seems the photo is earlier than 1882.

 

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