Blue lights, green lights, and red lights rose out of the dusky fog. Men emerged carrying bright Japanese lanterns; women held dim electric bulbs. As summer waned in Boston during the last days of August in 1899, a new regulation came into effect. Starting on the night of August 21, 1899, bicyclists in Boston were…Read more Oh, The Many Queer Lights of Franklin Park! – The Advent of Bicycle Lights in Boston, 1899
Few people living today remember the 1920s - let alone the specifics of travel during the era. Luckily, New England's commitment to preserving its history makes it relatively easy to envision the region as it appeared in decades past. This becomes obvious during any ride through many of its cities. The YouTube video below shows the…Read more A Train Accident in Lowell – 1928
Familiar sites greet you as you step from the twenty-minute electric car ride on the Lowell & Suburban into the Billerica Center of 1896. Like today, Town Common dominates the view, its Soldiers’ Monument and flagpole just now disappearing behind the late spring foliage. The Unitarian church and Town Hall (now the Library) bookend today’s…Read more A (true) story about Victorian Billerica Center, a church and its scandal
Rogers Street,today, is one of Lowell's main gateways into the city, providing access from Tewksbury, the city's southern neighbor. Known by many outside Lowell simply as Route 38, the road has a long past that is deeply connected to Lowell's history, and to the history of its Belvidere neighborhood especially. Rogers Street gets its name…Read more The Story of Lowell’s Rogers Hall
In May 1904, ten yards beyond a barbed wire fence in the East Billerica woods, James Marnell stumbled over a small mound of dirt, uncovering an ornate silver serving tray. “Sanborn’s treasure!” Marnell, a railroad worker, excitedly deduced. Townspeople knew Sanborn’s treasure to contain silverware, jewelry, and furs stolen the year before from Billerica’s plush…Read more Billerica, 1904: The Peddler’s Sons and Their Buried Treasure
Like today, the summer months of a century ago were no stranger to hot spells in the Greater Lowell area either. One particular hot spell, during the middle of July in 1910, was said to be 'hotter than the hobs of Hades', as it was reported by Oscar, a popular downtown Lowell personality who worked at…Read more Hot Spells of Long Ago – Lowell, Massachusetts, 1910
Is Massachusetts getting warmer? Wetter? There has been a lot of talk about global warming, climate change, its causes and its implications for our future. But, how has climate change affected Massachusetts? To really identify climate change, one needs a consistent set of data, taken reliably, continuously, and consistently at the same location over a…Read more Climate Change: Is Massachusetts getting warmer and wetter?