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Posts Tagged ‘Salem Massachusetts’

Hey Readers,

I know I have been woefully neglecting you, but I have a good reason I swear!  It’s  National Preservation Month  and here at work that is combined with a time heavy in reviewing Architectural Plans and preparing for our awards ceremony, then add to that the fact that a co-worker and I promised  to give a presentation to a Local Historical Commission on re-purposing disused Municipal buildings, so yeah… I might have over-extended myself just a bit.

I don’t want to leave you hanging, though, so I’m going to leave you with a couple of pictures from one of the buildings in my presentation on re-using your town’s Municipal buildings. This particular building is the Salem Jail in Salem, Massachusetts. It underwent a MASSIVE rehabilitation where it went from an unused former jail to luxury Condos and a great jail-themed restaurant called The Great Escape. Check out their website, since it gives some before photos of the jail.

Here is a before picture from the Preservation Nation Blog:

Here is a an artistic view of  the after  from the company who markets the Condos (I love the guy hanging out in the doorway!):

I will be back when things quiet down a little bit. Enjoy Preservation Month!

-Etta

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Today, I got to do something almost unheard of in my part of the office: I got to go on a site visit!  You see, at Old Stuff Inc., we don’t often have the time or resources to go into the field, but one of the projects I was involved with had a Grand Opening celebration, and I got to be there!

The Eustis Street Fire House, or ‘Torrent Six’ as it was called after its construction in 1859, will now be the headquarters to a great and very deserving Preservation group called Historic Boston Incorporated.  HBI’s mission is to carry out bricks and mortar preservation work, saving endangered buildings in Boston by fixing them up.

Below is a picture that I borrowed from their website (hopefully they won’t mind…. as I want to spread the word about their good deeds!) of the Fire House before its restoration. Talk about rough shape!

Also, below is another picture from the Boston Fire Historical Society which also has several great historical photos if you look at their site.

Finally, below is a picture of the rehabilitated Torrent Six sign and a bit of the building (Photo again from HBI).  Much of the Restoration work was done by students from the North Bennett Street School, which specializes in traditional craftsmanship and trade work.

It was wonderful to see a project through to such a wonderful conclusion. Good luck in your new home, HBI, and thanks for inviting me to join the fun!

-Etta

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Good morning all.

Today’s Friday fantasy is one that I have visited no less than 10 times and it is so famous it even had a book written about it (and I don’t mean one of those guide book things you get in a gift shop, I’m talking about actual “Literature” here), by a man you might have heard of. His name is Nathaniel Hawthorne, and the house is, of course, the House of Seven Gables.

The House of 7 Gables is located in Salem, Massachusetts, the site of America’s most infamous trial, which took place in 1692-1693 and during which I actually had a relative (Sarah Wildes) tried and hanged, so I always feel an extra sense of connection to history in Salem. Salem, by the way, has TONS of great places to visit, and it has THE BEST Halloween celebration (possibly in the world, if you can stand the crowds).  Since Halloween is my favorite holiday, I try to get to Salem in the fall whenever possible. (I think Gingerbreadbagles would agree that Halloween is the best holiday out there. Check out her blog, she has the sweetest treats around!)

Anyway back to business, one of the best parts of the House of Seven gables (well, besides everything) is the element that all fantasy homes wish they had: A Secret Passage!  That’s right. When you visit the House of Seven Gables, you will get to use the secret passage (assuming you’re built like an 18th century New Englander and aren’t claustrophobic, because it’s a tight fit) as part of your tour.

The House has roots to 1668, when the first portion was constructed by Sea Captain, John Turner. It remained in the Turner family for 3 generations before it was sold to Captain Ingersoll.  Ingersoll died at sea, leaving the house to his daughter, Susanna, who was cousin to Nathaniel Hawthorne.  Hawthorne so enjoyed his visits to the home that he made it a focal point of the setting when penned his famous Gothic romance in 1850.

For more information and to plan your visit, check out the House of Seven Gables website and take a look at all of the great things Salem has to offer here.

And I’ll leave you with a couple more pictures for good measure

-Etta


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