WARNING: For the historical thought experiment that follows, imagine there’s no traffic on Route 3A/Summer Street. Yes, it’s not easy, and if you can’t persuade yourself, please DON’T stand in the middle of the street! You have been warned!
Stand in the middle of Summer Street just south of Evergreen and face north to recreate this view. Competing merchants Myrick’s (the whole building since picked up and moved around the corner onto Evergreen) and Burges & Keith are to the left, the railroad crossing a directly ahead, and the Post Office block to the right. The hydrants on the sidewalk give one clue to the date: no earlier than 1887, when the water pipes were laid.
Watch out there’s a buggy coming!
Step aside for the buggy, turn around 180 degrees and look up the hill toward Green Street for this view. The stairs up to Myrick’s can just be seen at right, although the post and rail are different than in the preceding image. The water pipes ready to be installed on both sides of the street provide the date.
Ignore the caption — you’re still on Summer Street — and walk up the hill past Green. Turn around again. A little closer to the sidewalk, that’s right. A corner of the Kingston Inn (now the site of the Library) can be seen at left and the columns of the Frederic C. Adams Library at right.
Here’s a quick look at one of the first negatives I’ve scanned in the Local History Room. This is Emily Drew’s photograph of Elm Street at the Jones River. The Pumping Station is just out of the frame to the right side.
Meanwhile, somebody’s best friend is nosing around for a treat.
The house now known as 53 Lake Street was once the home of “Squire Holmes” whose father Jonathan Holmes Sr. built it at the time of his marriage to his second wife, Rebecca Tilden in 1752. Although it was a small structure, it was a double house and easily accommodated two families. In 1773, “Squire” Jedediah Holmes, son of Jonathan Sr., married Sarah Adams and they moved into this house with his step-mother. Their descendants lived in the house for many generations. The tale is told that Sarah , the “grandmother” to later generations, had planted a rose at the front doorstep when she came as a bride to live in the house. Later daughters of the house took slips of this “white rose of Savoie” from the original to plant near their marital homes, bringing the familiar to the new.
The view of 53 Lake Street above dates to around 1890; the one below from April 2008. In the newer photograph, despite the additions to both sides and the rear of the house, as well as front and back dormers, the original small structure can still be seen.
Source: Lantern Slide card file, Emily Fuller Drew.