Maybe you love to stare into the faces of those captured in long-ago photographs and search for a lost image of a long-dead ancestor. Maybe you just like old photos. In our family, we’ve had an old group photograph from 1924 for … well, since it was taken in 1924. The story behind the photograph…Read more Old Group Photos: Someone Else’s Ancestors
Where would you find the site of Lowell's first kindergarten, first day nursery, first night school, and first foray into community education? Where would find one of the city's few buildings remaining from the 1820s? Would you go to one of the city's downtown parking garages? Probably not, but that's just where you'd see all…Read more Lowell’s Early History, Hidden in Plain Sight.
Whether you’re looking for inspiration for fighting an unjust government, evidence for climate change, or a role model for living a more deliberate life, all those roads can lead to Henry David Thoreau, born 200 years ago on July 12. Born in Concord, Thoreau had Merrimack Valley ties, living several years in Chelmsford as a…Read more Henry David Thoreau, at 200: A Genius Old Sixpence whose Influence still Resonates Today
It's no secret that Lowell of long ago was more rural, especially in its outskirts - which included the land where Cross Point, Showcase Cinema and Route 3 now sit today. As you drive along Lowell's Route 110 East today (also known as Chelmsford Street), you'll cross into Lowell just before you pass under Route…Read more Behind the White Fence: Lowell’s Poor Farm
As far as hiking trails go in Eastern Massachusetts, Groton's Gibbet Hill offers an interesting story, as well as spectacular views. Pronounced "jib-bet" and meaning 'gallows,' the name for the hill off Groton's Route 40 comes from another hill in England and was named by Groton's English settlers when they first came to the area in the 17th…Read more Groton’s Castle of Broken Dreams – Bancroft Castle on Gibbet Hill
An article by Lowell Historical Society Curator Ryan W. Owen appears in the May/June 2016 issue of Merrimack Valley Magazine, which hits Greater Lowell newsstands soon. Lowell has lots to see, and do! Some of Lowell's best history-related points of attraction are featured in the article, A Peek into Lowell's Past. The list includes the downtown…Read more Merrimack Valley Magazine Feature! A Peek into Lowell’s Past
In our last post, we revealed how we learned that the Hi Hat figurine within our collection was carved in the likeness of former Hi Hat owner, Mo Rochette, who was also famous as the 'old guy' behind the snack bar at the Hi Hat during the 60s, 70s, and 80s. But to get there,…Read more The Early History of Lowell’s Hi Hat Rollaway
We call him Hi Hat Guy, at the Lowell Historical Society, after the name of roller skating rink that is lettered across his red tie. To the modern eye, Hi Hat Guy looks a little like Phil Dunphy, at least at first glance. He's the father figure played by Ty Burrell on ABC's Modern Family. Hi…Read more Among the Artifacts: Remembering Lowell’s Hi Hat Rollaway