Recent Submissions

  • Danvers Iron Works, Danversport, Mass. A.G. Tompkins & Co., Boston.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co.; Jones, Joseph L. (1884-01-01)
    When Arthur Gordon Tompkins died in 1892, he bequeathed the sum of $100,000 to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. The purpose of this trust, as outlined in his will, was to allow the museum to make as many free admission days as possible with no financial burden to the institution. He also stipulated that whatever sum was left over after his estate was settled should be given to the MFA for use in purchasing modern oil paintings. Tompkins also left money to Massachusetts General Hospital, the Young Men's Christian Union, the Home for Aged Men, the Home for Aged Women, the Home for Aged Couples, and the Home for Little Wanderers. His firm, Arthur G. Tompkins & Co., owned the Danvers Iron Works.
  • Pine Lodge and Spring Brook Cottage. Property of E.F. Searls, Methuen, Mass.

    1884-01-01
    Born in Methuen, Massachusetts in 1841, Edward F. Searles was an architectural designer who made a name for himself when Herter Bros. sent him to San Francisco to help Mary Hopkins, a famously wealthy widow, complete her Nob Hill mansion. Mary Hopkins and Edward Searles soon developed a more intimate relationship. Though their romance received much scrutiny from San Francisco high society (not least of all for the twenty-two year age difference between them), they were married in 1887. Mary and her first husband had no children of their own, but Mary had adopted Timothy Nolan, the adult son of her housekeeper, who changed his last name to reflect his new parentage. Shortly after her marriage to Edward, Mary altered her will to exclude Timothy and left her enormous fortune to her new husband. They removed to the East Coast where Edward began building mansions. Mary died after a mere four years of marriage. Her death led to a fierce and public legal battle between Timothy Hopkins and Edward Searles over her estate. The court case, closely followed by the media, involved claims of conspiracies, forgery, spiritual exploitation, and overall manipulation. The West Coast newspapers sided with Hopkins while the East Coast papers firmly stood by Searles. The court eventually ruled in favor of Searles, although Hopkins did receive a multi-million dollar settlement. A close friend of both Mary and Edward who had been involved in the case, General Thomas Hubbard, suggested that Searles leave a lasting testament of his love for Mary by paying for a new science building at Bowdoin College. Searles, who had admitted in court that he had married Mary “partly out of affection and partly for her money” immediately funded the project, and the resulting facility became known as the Searles Science Building. After the trial Edward Searles became largely reclusive. He did, however, continue to build mansions until he died. When he died in 1920, his estate was bonded in Massachusetts for $45,000,000. One of his creations, Searles Castle in Windham, N.H., is currently the Presentation of Mary Academy.
  • Shoe Factory of V.K. & A.H. Jones. 120 Broad St., Lynn, Mass. Erected 1883.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    V.K. & A. H. Jones Shoe Factory manufactured fine ladies’ shoes and boots. They were known for hiring only the most skilled people in the trade and as a result their products were highly sought after. Despite their popularity, they only concerned themselves with the New England and Western trade. They had a factory in Hampton, New Hampshire but closed it down when they consolidated their business in Lynn, causing an economic collapse in Hampton.
  • Residence of A. Webster, Topsfield, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Albert Webster was born in Ipswich on 16 March 1824. Both of his parents died when he was still very young, and so at age seven he was bound out at Topsfield. He remained in Topsfield for seven years before running away at age fourteen, apparently having been treated cruelly. He made his way to Boston where he began working at a candy store. By the time he was twenty, he had purchased the business at which he had been working. In 1861 he moved the store to a new location and established himself as the first exclusive confectioner. In addition to being a candy entrepreneur, Webster was also a member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company from the age of twenty-two until his death, and a thirty-second degree Mason in the Massachusetts Consistory. After retiring from the candy business in 1890, Webster lived out the last twelve years of his life at his farm in Topsfield with his family. He had three daughters and one son with his first wife, Catherine Falvey. His son was engaged to Una Hawthorne, daughter of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Before they could be married, however, the younger Webster drowned in Honolulu.
  • Parochial School for Boys. Convent. Parochial School for Girls. Parochial Residence. Rev. A.J. Teeling, Pastor.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    When Rev. Arthur J. Teeling began as the pastor of the Church of the Immaculate Conception, one of his initial goals was to build a parochial school. In 1873 he bought the site of the Female High School, which was at the corner of Washington and Court Streets, in hopes that it would become the building for the parochial school. In July of 1873 more Court Street property (the First Christian Baptist Church) was purchased by a church member, Elder Pike. In July of 1878 Teeling bought a residence on Court Street. In November of that same year he announced to his parishioners that within a year they would have a Catholic school. The residence was moved further down Court Street and expanded to create a convent for the nuns who would teach at the new school. The property that Elder Pike had bought was expanded and turned into the Parochial School for Girls. The part of the building that faced Washington Street became the Parochial School for Boys. The Sisters of Charity of Nazareth in Kentucky came to Newburyport at the request of Rev. Teeling to teach in the schools. The school itself had ten classrooms equipped with new desks, chairs, and blackboards. Five of the rooms were for the boys, and five were for the girls. Six hundred could fit into the first floor hall of the building. The school opened officially on 4 September 1882 with 520 students, 420 of whom had transferred from surrounding public schools. This had an adverse impact on the public schools of the town. Due to the large exodus of students from public to parochial schools, three of the public schools reported in October 1882 they would shut down. Two years after the school had opened there were seven hundred students enrolled and fifteen teachers. Several years before the school opened, a new policy had been implemented in the Catholic Church that allowed priests to withhold sacraments from parents who did not send their children to Catholic schools. This policy lasted into the 1890s, which meant that the Immaculate Conception Parochial School was guaranteed to have a large student body for the years that the policy was in place. In 1945 the Immaculate Conception Parochial School burned down. The fire also destroyed the steeple of the parish church. The fire occurred after school had been let out for the day, so there were only 50 people (children and nuns) left in the building. Those children were attending confirmation and music classes.
  • Church of the Immaculate Conception, Rev. A.J. Teeling, Pastor. Newburyport, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Arthur J. Teeling was born in Dublin in 1844 and came to this country when he was three years old. He lived in the Boston area and in 1864 decided to enter into the Catholic priesthood. He entered the Provincial Seminary in Troy, New York. In the time between being ordained and being assigned to the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Newburyport, Teeling sailed to Liverpool and spent the next six months travelling through Europe, Egypt, and the Holy Land. In Rome he met with Pope Leo XIII who bestowed his blessing upon the Church of the Immaculate Conception through Teeling. In the days before an official church was established, Catholics in Newburyport would gather at one person’s home and priests from other towns would conduct Mass there. As the number of Catholics in Newburyport grew, the need for a chapel became more urgent. Property was purchased but the congregation continued to multiply, and the chapel was outgrown. Finally, in 1852, a brand new church was erected to accommodate the sizeable congregation. A rectory was purchased shortly after the dedication of the new church. But by the time the well-respected priest who was largely responsible for these expansions, Father Lennon, passed away in 1871, the Church of the Immaculate Conception was $9,000 in debt and still did not have a Catholic cemetery. The rectory had passed out of the church’s hands, as had most of the property that they had owned and on which they had worshipped. This is what faced Father Teeling when he finally arrived in Newburyport. He was left to pick up the pieces, and he rose to the challenge. He paid off the church’s debt. In 1872 he bought back the parochial residence that had been used by Father Lennon. He had a spire built on the church in 1874. In April 1874 he bought land on Storey Avenue for a Catholic cemetery. He bought property on which he had built a parochial school for boys and girls, and a convent for the nuns who taught at the school. The school opened in 1882. He was known for his excellent counsel to his parishioners in spiritual, personal, financial, and other aspects of their lives. As a priest, Arthur J. Teeling was considered to be wildly successful and garnered much praise.
  • Residence of C. H. Bond, Cliftondale, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Charles Henry Bond, born in Saugus in 1846, made his fortune as the president of Waitt & Bond, Inc., a cigar manufacturing company. Once he had amassed a sizeable fortune, Bond became less interested in cigars and devoted more of his time to his one true passion: music. He sought out poor but talented singers and would fund their European training, even giving them monthly living stipends. Bond invested in the construction of what was to be the Lyric Theatre in Boston. Unfortunately Bond took a financial hit after the Panic of 1907. He tried to ignore the trouble and continued to accrue debt in order to keep funding the Lyric Theatre project. In May of 1908, Bond was kicked off of the project. In July of the same year he was found dead in his bathtub. He left a signed note that read, “I have been killed by my friends and enemies. It is more than I can bear. I can stand it no longer. My heart is broken. I leave everything to my wife.” The Lyric Theatre project was bought by the Shubert Organization, which opened it under the name the Shubert Theatre in 1910.
  • Residence of Joseph Davis, Lynn, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
  • Residence of A.A. Abbott. Washington St., Cor., Main St,; Peabody, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Alfred Amos Abbott was born in Andover on 30 May 1820 and attended Phillips Andover Academy. After graduating, he attended Yale, then Union College. He continued on to the Dane Law School at Cambridge, finally finishing his law studies in the office of Joshua Holyoke Ward. He moved to and began practicing law in Peabody, where he remained until his death. He held a variety of jobs in the legal field throughout his life. He represented Essex County in the senate in 1853, whereupon, having been appointed district attorney for the Eastern District he took that job and remained there until 1869. Following that position he was appointed the clerk of the courts, an office that he held until his death. He was respected as a lawyer but was also known to be a man of culture and knowledge beyond law. William D. Northend, president of the Essex Bar Association in the Superior Court at Salem said this of Mr. Abbott, “He read the best books and was a thorough student of English literature.” Abbott died on 27 October 1884.
  • Residence of Mrs. Eliza Sutton. Main St., Peabody, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Eliza Dustin Sutton of Peabody believed strongly in using her wealth to help others. She established the Charitable Tenement Association, which provided housing for poor, elderly women in Peabody. It still stands today as the Sutton Home for Women. She donated $20,000 to the Peabody Institute to build the Eben Dale Sutton Reference room, named for her son, who had suffered from a variety of maladies and died at age fourteen. The Eben Dale Sutton Reference Room has recently been restored and it continues to house the archives for the Peabody Institute Library. George Peabody was a good friend and stayed with Eliza and her husband when he returned to visit Peabody in 1856, 1857, and 1866.
  • Town Hall, Peabody, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    The government of Peabody built a brand new town hall to replace the one that was built as Danvers was splitting into two towns. The new town hall was dedicated on 22 November 1883. The enormity of the building was often joked about, but when Peabody became a city the huge building was perfect for city hall. The basement of the building held the police station and was equipped with twelve cells. In 1907 a fire almost destroyed city hall. During the fire there were six prisoners in the basement cells who would have perished if James Gilman and William C. Mahoney of the fire department (with the help of Thomas Grady and Captain McCarthy of the police department) had not saved them. Between 1967 and 1971 the city of Peabody spent $176,920 on renovations and repairs to the city hall.
  • Residence of Wm. Blaney. Stevens St., Peabody, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    William Blaney, a master painter, was born in Lynn on 17 December 1834 to Philip and Mary Blaney. Philip was also a painter, and William started in the business when he was still a boy. He moved to Peabody and established himself there as a painter as well as a leader in town affairs, although he never held an official position. One night, at the age of seventy-nine, Blaney was walking through Peabody by the Soldiers’ Monument when he was struck by a car. The driver of the car, H.J. Pushard, took Blaney to the hospital where they thought he had sustained only minor injuries. In fact, his skull had been fractured, and he died the following afternoon, 15 November 1913.
  • Stevens Block, Lynn Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
  • Pinder & Winchester's Tannery, Peabody Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Pinder & Winchester was a tannery started by John Pinder and George J. Winchester. They opened in 1867 and did well until a fire destroyed their factory. After the fire, John Pinder retired from the business.
  • Residence of J. T. Wilson, Nahant, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Joseph T. Wilson was well known as a building contractor who constructed some of the finest mansions on the North Shore, including that of Henry Clay Frick at Prides Crossing. However, Wilson was more than a builder. Originally from Maine, Wilson eventually made Nahant his home, holding more public office positions than seemed humanly possible. He was the chairman of the school board for twenty years, a trustee of the public library for twenty-five years, and a well respected judge. He was a member of the boards of selectmen, assessors, and health for thirty years and chaired those boards for 29 of those years. Supposedly he was up for election to public office more than a hundred times and was never defeated, all the while never soliciting votes for himself. It was long rumored that he was instrumental in securing the party nomination and ultimate Senate victory for Henry Cabot Lodge, a longtime friend of Wilson’s. Wilson was a 33rd degree Mason. He and his wife, Sophlia, who was also from Maine, had three children. His son entered into the contracting business and became a partner of the company which was renamed J.T. Wilson & Son.
  • Residence of Mrs. E. D. Kimball, Washington Sq. Salem.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Edward D. Kimball was a merchant and a ship owner whose vessels could be found all over the world, from the west coast of Africa to the East Indies. He married his cousin, Susan Sawyer Kimball. They had three sons and one adopted daughter. Edward Kimball died in Paris in 1867. Susan continued to live a quiet life. She was a charitable woman who was known for her sympathetic nature. She died in 1902.
  • Residence of Hon. John I. Baker, Beverly, Mass.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    Hon. John I. Baker was the first mayor of Beverly. Having been born there on 16 August 1812, Baker devoted himself to improving Beverly. He was interested in the idea of temperance (he was nominated for Congress and Governor on the Prohibition ticket) and was strongly against slavery. For seventeen years he served as town clerk and selectman. He was county commissioner for sixteen years, school committeeman for twenty years, and he was in the House of Representatives for eighteen years. He also served in the state senate for two years. The list of his public service extends further still, having served on a variety of commissions. He lived to be eighty-three, and was well known and loved by the citizens of Beverly when he died.
  • Residence of George Peabody, Washington Sq. Salem.

    Geo. H. Walker & Co. (1884-01-01)
    George Peabody was a financier and a philanthropist who donated millions of dollars to charity. He was known throughout the world for his generosity and modesty. He was born in Peabody, Massachusetts, and even after he moved away from there, he continued to give money so freely to his hometown that a group of Peabody citizens held a banquet on the eve of his birthday each year. He lived for many years in England, where his philanthropy continued. He was the American darling of the British. Queen Victoria was fond of him and gave him a portrait of herself. He died in England and, though he had made it clear he wanted to be buried in Peabody, he was still given a funeral service in England at Westminster Abbey. His body was then sailed home where it was met with great reverence. Throngs of people came to see the casket, numbering in the tens of thousands. He was buried at a plot he had picked out, in a tomb where he had already laid his mother to rest.

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