History

By - 1/3/19 - 5:56 pm
Durgin-Park matchbook cover

Old Durgin-Park matchbook cover. See it larger.

The place that's been serving food since before you were born will close forever on Jan. 12, NBC Boston reports. The joint just doesn't make money anymore, WBZ reports. Has anybody checked on the Union Oyster House?

Image from the BPL matchbook-cover collection.

By - 1/3/19 - 4:06 pm
Molasses flood aftermath

Stephen Puleo, who literally wrote the book about the 1919 Great Molasses Flood (Dark Tide), will give a talk on the deadly, brown, gooey tsunami at the BPL on Jan. 15 - 100 years to the day after a shoddy, 50-foot-tall molasses tank on Commercial Street in the North End exploded, sending a deep river of warm molasses along the waterfront at 35 m.p.h., killing 21 people and several horses, demolishing a fire house and warping the elevated tracks that then ran above the street. Read more.

By - 1/3/19 - 9:39 am

Aline Kaplan explains its link to the Marquis de Lafayette and takes a look at its later descent into a key part of the Combat Zone.

By - 1/1/19 - 7:57 pm
Flag raised in Somerville

Ron Newman attended the annual recreation of the first ever raising of what we now know as an American flag, on Jan. 1, 1776 over Prospect Hill in Somerville.

Washington himself ordered the flag raised over the camp of what was the new Continental Army.

By - 12/28/18 - 3:35 pm

The Boston Fire Department reports firefighters were summoned to a fire at 94 Endicott St. in the North End around 5:14 a.m. by a resident who thought to use a street fire-alarm box when calling 911 from a phone didn't work - from the same location where the world's first ever municipal fire-box alarm was pulled in 1852. Read more.

By - 12/16/18 - 1:39 pm
By - 12/13/18 - 8:58 am

A Dig reporter has to get up pretty early in the morning to catch the one train a day that leaves Plimptonville for Boston - it departs at 6:58 a.m.

I drove to Plimptonville one morning this fall, I think to find its reason for existing. Assuming there is one.

By - 12/11/18 - 10:57 am
Horses in the snow in old Boston

The folks at the Boston City Archives wonder if you can place this horsey, snowy photo. See it larger.

By - 11/30/18 - 11:05 am
Old Black Angus on Boston street

The Chevy billboard gives away the rough date of this photo, but the folks at the Boston City Archives wonder if you can figure out the street where this photo was taken. See it larger.

By - 11/26/18 - 7:34 pm

The BBC revisits the history of Watch City, a.k.a. Waltham, the city that made time regular.

Well, except for Ashland, a.k.a. Clocktown (the high-school teams are the Clockers), named for the factory that made the world's first electric clocks, as designed by Henry Ellis Warren.

By - 11/22/18 - 9:48 am
Quincy House menu

The Quincy House hotel, at the corner of Brattle Place and Brattle Square, had this cover printed for its Thanksgiving dinner in 1899 (from the New York Public Library collection). Read more.

By - 11/14/18 - 9:00 am

With Redcoats firmly ensconced in Boston 250 years ago, they weren't going to tolerate major infractions among troops - such as desertion. J.L. Bell recounts the execution of Pvt. Richard Eames of the 14th Regiment on the Common for desertion.

By - 11/13/18 - 9:54 am

The Tufts Observer recounts the university's long history of taking opium-linked money, from donations from a member of the Cabot family to the building named after the couple who gave us OxyContin.

By - 11/11/18 - 12:03 am
Back Bay Armistice celebrations

One hundred years ago today, people all over the Boston area stopped what they were doing to celebrate the end of the War to End All Wars. Read more.

By - 11/8/18 - 10:51 am
Trolley station in old Boston

The folks at the Boston City Archives wonder if you can place this scene. See it larger.

By - 11/4/18 - 12:40 pm
Gilchrist's at the corner of Washington and Winter streets in downtown Boston

Marion Trikosko captured the scene at the intersection of Washington and Winter streets, looking towards Tremont Street in what we now call Downtown Crossing, one August day in 1964. Gilchrist's is now the Corner, Albert's is an AT&T store.

From the Library of Congress's collection of Boston photos and drawings.

By - 10/23/18 - 12:31 pm
Fire in old Boston

The folks at the Boston City Archives wonder if you can date and place this photo of a well known Boston fire.

By - 10/22/18 - 11:11 am
Von Braun, Arthur Fiedler and Ellen Fiedler

On March 23, 1963, Arthur Fiedler and his wife Ellen visited with Werner von Braun at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, AL. Read more.