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Enjoy Swampscott History Every Day: Get Your Historical Society 2014 Calendar

Buy your calendar during the week at the Collector’s Office at Swampscott Town Hall or on the weekend at the Farmers’ Market at Swampscott High School.

File photo of a previous SHS calendar's photo.
File photo of a previous SHS calendar's photo.
A dozen History Buffs met in the Swampscott Library today and discussed the new Swampscott Historical Society 2014 calendar.  The cover, in color, shows the New Ocean House Hotel, golf course, beach and grounds. The inside front cover has an etching of the Swampscott Fish House in 1896. It clearly shows an area with big wooden reels holding the drying fishnets.  The next picture is the Swampscott train station in 1890. The train station is on the National Register of Historic Places.

January. In the past, the Baptist Parsonage and Church was on the corner of Burrill Street and Rock Avenue, where they are presently erecting a large building. Later the church steeple was removed and the building modernized to become the Church of the Redeemer, Methodist.  

February.  The aerial view of Black Will’s Cliff was taken in 1922.  If viewed carefully, you can see the Greenwood Avenue High School, and a corner of Fisherman’s Beach. The Catholic church is there, in its former Victorian Gothic glory. The first building to the right of St. John’s Church is the first brick building in Swampscott. The house belonged to Martin Van Buren Stone, the captain of the Mayflower, which was the the victorious United States defender of the sixth America’s Cup in 1886, beating the English Galatea. 

March.  In 1890 Theophilus Brackett posed holding a codfish and wearing the roughly palmed mittens fishermen used to scale fish. Brackett developed and built the first Swampscott dory, which became known far and wide as the most sea-worthy boat of its kind.  He was believed to be a least ninety when the picture was taken. 

April.  The picture, taken in front of the old town hall, is of the last five Civil War G.A.R. veterans of Post 188, in Swampscott. George Laurillard was the lone remaining Civil War vet and he died in 1941.

May.  The fishhouses on Fisherman’s Beach, 1885, before the town built the big fishhouse.The fish house just to the right of center was Blaney’s fish house and even after the new fish House was built, Blaney kept his fish house until the town of Swampscott finally took his property by eminent domain. The second house from the left  is the original home of the old hand tub, the fire engine, Atlantic 1.That building was moved to the beach from across the street and finally to Elmwood Road. It is where town meetings were held and where the decision was made to separate from Lynn. 

June.  The bathers at Blaney Beach (Fisherman’s Beach), in 1892.  Notice the tiny waist on the woman in the center and the air filling the skirt of the woman on the right. In the background is the Lincoln House Hotel. A smaller building in front of the hotel was barged across the harbor and placed on a new foundation on Puritan Road.

July. Phillips Beach train station, July 4, 1939.  It was the first stop of the five stops on the Marblehead short line branch after leaving the Swampscott depot. It has a locomotive and a limousine in the picture.

August. Teen aged girls on King’s beach, 1888. The buildings in the background were at the end of Cliffside Terrace, on Black Will’s Cliff. The young ladies have wool suits, shoes, stockings and hats,  The younger girl has no stockings, no hat.

September. Humphrey Street and Blaney Street in the 1920’s. Lynch Brother’s Store had an ice box and sawdust on the floor. In the back of the store was a pot-bellied stove with chairs all around it. Old timers used to gather around the stove to settle the problems of the world, or at least the town.  Perhaps closed in the early 1960’s.

October. Orient Street (Puritan Road) and Lincoln House Avenue, on the left.The picket fence on the right would be at Woodbine Avenue and the other fence is now a wrought iron fence in front of the house which was known as Page Cottage, owned by the New Ocean House. Through the center of the picture beyond the trees, you can see a section of Fisherman’s Beach.

November. The Swampscott High School football team at the Swampscott Club, November 30, 1905. 

December.  The Ice Rink at Jackson Park, now a parking lot for the high school. On cold winter days men and boys played hockey there. Later a cement block warm-up house and rest room was added. On the Fourth of July early evening open air dances were held there with Lou Marino’s orchestra providing music before it was time for fireworks at Jackson Park.
The back cover shows Monument Avenue in summer with Swampscott spelled out in beautiful flowers. 

These 2014 Swampscott Historic Society calendars will be for sale at the Sundays at Farmers’ Market at Swampscott High School and during the week at the Collector’s Office at Swampscott Town Hall.

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