May 17, 2015 Lost Boston at Dorchester Historical Society

 

“Lost Boston” by Anthony Sammarco
2 p.m. Sunday, May 17
 William Clapp House
195 Boston St.
Dorchester, MA 02125

Join DHS for an illustrated lecture by Anthony M. Sammarco, author of “Lost Boston.” The book is the story of some of Boston’s once well-known institutions that were demolished, lost to fire, or neglect. Learn about the Readville Trotting Park, the Boston Garden, the City Point Aquarium, Jordan Marsh Department Store, as well as the Parker House, Tremont House and Hotel Pelham.

The May program is also the Dorchester Historical Society’s annual meeting, which includes an election of members to the DHS board of directors.

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Dorchester Illustration 2190 chemistry class at Dorchester High School 1901

Dorchester Illustration no. 2190

 Dorchester High School chemistry class, 1901.

 Dorchester’s third high school building was constructed in at the corner of Talbot Avenue and Centre Street in Codman Square the year before.  It later became Dorchester High School for Girls, later Girls’ Latin School, later Boston Latin Academy and now Latin Academy Apartments.

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The Dorchester Illustration is sent occasionally. If you receive this e-mail by mistake, please reply to be taken off the e-mail list. If you know others who would like to receive the daily e-mail, please encourage them to join the group by going to http://groups.google.com/group/dorchester-historical-society. You may contact Earl Taylor at ERMMWWT@aol.com

If you value receiving the illustration, please express your appreciation by making a donation to the Dorchester Historical Society, either by regular mail at 195 Boston Street, Dorchester, MA 02125, or through the website at www.DorchesterHistoricalSociety.org

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Dorchester Illustration 2189 Home of Mary Mallon

 

Dorchester Illustration no. 2189

Scan of gelatine print from The American Architect and Building News, April 2, 1892. No. 349.  House of Mrs. Mary F. Mallon, Bowdoin Avenue, Dorchester, Mass., S.J.F. Thayer, Architect.

Sadly, the Samuel J.F. Thayer-designed mansion is no longer extant. Built in 1880, it stood at the corner of what is now Bowdoin Ave and Mallon Road. (from Boston Landmark’s description of Mt. Bowdoin)

The house was replaced with four 3-story, 6-family apartments numbered 20, 24, 28 and 32 Bowdoin Avenue. The house was lost sometime between 1918 and 1933.  The 1918 atlas shows St. Stephens Settlement as owner.

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The Dorchester Illustration is sent occasionally. If you receive this e-mail by mistake, please reply to be taken off the e-mail list. If you know others who would like to receive the daily e-mail, please encourage them to join the group by going to http://groups.google.com/group/dorchester-historical-society. You may contact Earl Taylor at ERMMWWT@aol.com

If you value receiving the illustration, please express your appreciation by making a donation to the Dorchester Historical Society, either by regular mail at 195 Boston Street, Dorchester, MA 02125, or through the website at www.DorchesterHistoricalSociety.org

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Dorchester Illustration 2187 Brooke Charter School Home for Destitute Jewish Children

Dorchester Illustration no. 2187

The Brooke Mattapan Charter School now uses the building at 150-165 American Legion Highway, formerly the Home for Destitute Jewish Children.

 Excerpt from National Register of Historic Places nomination for the Home for Destitute Jewish Children building.

Although the established German Jewish community was successful in helping to establish the new Eastern European and Russian Jews in Boston, there was a need for additional care for the second wave of Jewish immigrants. To meet this need, Russian-born lawyer and politician Samuel Borofsky founded Boston’s second Jewish orphanage in 1897, known as the Home for Destitute Jewish Children. The first was the Leopold Morse Home for Aged and Infirm Hebrews and Orphans, which began operations in Mattapan ca. 1890 and catered primarily to German Jewish orphans. Borofsky’s Ladies Helping Hand Society opened the Home for Destitute Jewish Children at the corner of Beech Glen Street and Fort Avenue in Roxbury, across the street from the Boston Nursery for Blind Babies. It was home to 65 boys and girls, most of whom were half-orphans whose parents were paid low weekly fees and brought their children home when they remarried or their poor economic situation improved.

 

By 1908, the Helping Hand’s Home for Destitute Jewish Children had outgrown its quarters. For the purposes of raising funds to build a new orphanage, the Hebrew Ladies Helping Hand Society and the Ladies Auxiliary formed a new organization, named The Ladies Helping Hand Auxiliary of the Home for Jewish Children. The Auxiliary successfully raised the $100,000 needed to construct and fully furnish the building upon completion. The Auxiliary raised the funds through private donations and by holding dances, concerts, and fairs. At the time of the opening, the group was only $30,000 short of its goal.

Deemed the Home for Destitute Jewish Children, the building was designed by architect John A. Hasty. Hasty first opened a practice in Cambridge, MA, moving to Milk Street in Boston in 1904, and later to offices at 46 Cornhill Street in Boston.

 

Hasty designed numerous private residences, commercial buildings, and industrial complexes, many of which are listed in the State and National Registers. These include the Eagle Bowling Alley (1902) in Roxbury, located within the Dudley Station Historic District (NR 1985); Temple Ohabei Shalom Cemetery Chapel in East Boston (1903, NR 2008); 20 Elmwood Avenue (1892), located within the

Old Cambridge Historic District (NR 1983); three buildings within the Central Square Historic District in

Cambridge (NR 1990); and 153 Naples Road (1908) in Brookline, located within the Graffam-McKay Local Historic District (LHD 2004). He also designed the Temple Beth El located on Fowler Street in Dorchester, in 1911. It was the first synagogue built in the neighborhood, a Neo Classical-style building with a domed roof, and the only wooden temple constructed in Boston. It was sold by the congregation in 1967, and was demolished in 1998. Hasty’s multistory apartment and commercial buildings were designed in a variety of revival styles popular at the turn of the century, and the Home is consistent with the character of his other works. Hasty was likely awarded the commission for the Home due to his ongoing association with the Jewish community.

 

Designed in the Classical Revival style, the building is typical of many late 19th- and early 20th-century

institutional buildings in Boston. Stemming from the Beaux-Arts tradition, which celebrated the composition and symmetry of Greek and Roman architecture, the Classical Revival style in the United States was often selected by architects for its more refined and restrained expression. While many Classical Revival-style buildings were constructed of cast stone, Hasty selected brick as the primary cladding, likely for its local availability and warmer tones more appropriate to a residential building. Classical Revival-style character defining features of the building include the symmetrical facade, monumental central entrance, and cast-stone quoins, sills, lintels, and pediment.

 

The new building opened in 1911 with great fanfare (see Figure 1, 1913 photograph). Boston Mayor John F. Fitzgerald addressed the large audience at the opening ceremony, along with Rabbi Harry Levi of Temple Israel, who stated his desire for Jewish children to be sent to the Home over public institutions to allow Jewish beliefs and traditions to be carried on by the children. At its opening, the Home provided shelter to scores of children under the age of 16. By 1912, the then underpopulated Morse Home merged with the Home for Destitute Jewish Children, thereby turning over its assets, claims to FJC funds, and ties to the affluent German Jewish community to the Home for Destitute Jewish Children. It was noted by the Jewish Advocate in 1919 that many of the Home’s children came from different classes, resulting in a wide variety of habits, propensities, and lifestyles. The Home was run much like a boarding school of the day, including rules and regulations. The new orphanage provided housing to roughly 200 boys and girls annually, aged 6 to 18.

 

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The Dorchester Illustration is sent occasionally. If you receive this e-mail by mistake, please reply to be taken off the e-mail list. If you know others who would like to receive the daily e-mail, please encourage them to join the group by going to http://groups.google.com/group/dorchester-historical-society. You may contact Earl Taylor at ERMMWWT@aol.com

If you value receiving the illustration, please express your appreciation by making a donation to the Dorchester Historical Society, either by regular mail at 195 Boston Street, Dorchester, MA 02125, or through the website at www.DorchesterHistoricalSociety.org

 

 

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April 19th, 2015 Program: Hidden Treasures of Dorchester: Architecture of the Railroad Suburb by Andrew Saxe

Mr. Saxe will give his popular talk on the history of Dorchester architecture for the third time. Refreshed and revised, with new research, new photos and a more historical photos, Mr. Saxe’s lecture examines the history of Dorchester’s first three hundred years through the changing styles of its houses.  As one of the oldest towns in the United States, and one affected by sweeping social and economic changes, Dorchester presents an unusually textured picture of American history.  From Puritans, to Tories, to Patriots, Industrialists, Victorian professionals, and immigrant Irish, Dorchester’s residents built their homes in ways that reflected political, religious and aesthetic beliefs of their era. Few towns have experienced such an evolution or posses such a rich variety of historical styles.  While sadly many of Dorchester’s grand estates have been demolished, happily hundreds of homes have survived and are being restored by the town’s latest generation.

 

Mr. Saxe uses a mix of the collections of historic photographs from the Society’s own archives, from Historic New England and Boston Public Library. The bulk of his lecture, though, presents extant houses in their current condition from his own archive of over 10,000 vivid photos taken since his move to Melville Park in 2008 from the South End.  Following his last talk to the DHS in 2013, Mr. Saxe was asked to write on this topic for Design New England and to address the Boston Society of Architects.

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Dorchester Illustration no. 2186 Landing of the Dorchester Settlers

Dorchester Illustration no. 2186

 

Scenes from Dorchester history from Harper’s Weekly, June 26, 1880, celebrating the 250th anniversary of settlement. Engraving by Charles Graham

 

You may need to use your picture viewing program to zoom in to see the illustration to best advantage.

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The Dorchester Illustration is sent occasionally. If you receive this e-mail by mistake, please reply to be taken off the e-mail list. If you know others who would like to receive the daily e-mail, please encourage them to join the group by going to http://groups.google.com/group/dorchester-historical-society. You may contact Earl Taylor at ERMMWWT@aol.com

If you value receiving the illustration, please express your appreciation by making a donation to the Dorchester Historical Society, either by regular mail at 195 Boston Street, Dorchester, MA 02125, or through the website at www.DorchesterHistoricalSociety.org

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Dorchester Illustration no. 2185 Keystone Building

 

Dorchester Illustration no. 2185

The Keystone Building at 151 Hallet Street is featured in this advertisement for Fairfax Towels in Nations Business magazine in March, 1961.

At that time the building was owned by the Keystone Company, manufacturer of toys and cameras.

The building permit to construct the building was granted to Hallet & Davis Piano Co. in 1910.  When they applied to add a stable to the property in 1921, one of the conditions of the permit approval was that manure pits in connection with stables were prohibited.  In 1927 the Geo. Steck Co., also a piano company, applied to build a new kiln.  In 1939 the building was owned by Chickering.  Keystone seems to have come on the scene in 1955.  In 1977 a permit application was approved to convert the building to 223 units of housing.

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The Dorchester Illustration is sent occasionally. If you receive this e-mail by mistake, please reply to be taken off the e-mail list. If you know others who would like to receive the daily e-mail, please encourage them to join the group by going to http://groups.google.com/group/dorchester-historical-society. You may contact Earl Taylor at ERMMWWT@aol.com

If you value receiving the illustration, please express your appreciation by making a donation to the Dorchester Historical Society, either by regular mail at 195 Boston Street, Dorchester, MA 02125, or through the website at www.DorchesterHistoricalSociety.org

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March 22, 2015 Urban Religion and the Origins of Addiction Recovery

Urban Religion and the Origins of Addiction Recovery

2:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 22, 2015 at the William Clapp House

Eoin Cannon, aide to Boston’s Mayor Martin J. Walsh and author of The Saloon and the

Mission. Tales of surviving the depths of addiction are among the most popular

stories in American culture today, combining compelling drama with spiritual uplift and

psychological insight. At the same time, story-telling plays an important role in recovery

practices. When did Americans start telling recovery stories and why? Eoin Cannon traces

this phenomenon to the evangelical Christian missions run by reformed drunkards in

American cities in the late 19th century.

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Urban Religion and the Origins of Addiction Recovery

2:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 22, 2015 at the William Clapp House

Eoin Cannon, aide to Boston’s Mayor Martin J. Walsh and author of The Saloon and the Mission. Tales of surviving the depths of addiction are among the most popular stories in American culture today, combining compelling drama with spiritual uplift and psychological insight. At the same time, story-telling plays an important role in recovery practices. When did Americans start telling recovery stories and why? Eoin Cannon traces  this phenomenon to the evangelical Christian missions run by reformed drunkards in American cities in the late 19th century.

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Dorchester Illustration 2184 McGovern Coal

Dorchester Illustration no. 2184

McGovern Coal on Geneva Avenue, circa 1940.

“Then there was the McGovern Coal Company down on Geneva Avenue. It’s interesting to know how the McGoverns got their money to go in the coal business. Well, when old Mr. McGovern and his brother came over from the old country, they went out west to get their fortune. They were panning gold and when they had enough, they started home on horseback. On the way home they got chased by Indians and they had sacks of gold across their saddles. Mr. McGovern’s brother got shot by an arrow, an Indian arrow. Well, he couldn’t do anything to save him crossing the river, so he reached over and he got his brother’s gold, and put it on his saddle, and he came home here and started in the coal business. “

 

Quote from John Ward in Dorchester. Boston 200 Series. (Boston, 1976)

 

 

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The Dorchester Illustration is sent occasionally. If you receive this e-mail by mistake, please reply to be taken off the e-mail list. If you know others who would like to receive the daily e-mail, please encourage them to join the group by going to http://groups.google.com/group/dorchester-historical-society. You may contact Earl Taylor at ERMMWWT@aol.com

If you value receiving the illustration, please express your appreciation by making a donation to the Dorchester Historical Society, either by regular mail at 195 Boston Street, Dorchester, MA 02125, or through the website at www.DorchesterHistoricalSociety.org

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