The Baystate Objectivist

The Baystate Objectivist

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Pine Point Library

A flashback.

No time for anything new, but here's a blast from the past, which originally appeared in a May 16, 2005 post that is no longer available:

Former Springfield resident Carol Palmer wrote to me asking whether I had any pictures of the old Pine Point Library, which burned down in a never solved case of arson around 1970. As a matter of fact I do have a few pictures taken of the library in the now hopelessly distant year of 1968. Here's me in 1968 (far right) with my mother and sisters.

Even in my tender youth I was an obnoxious shutterbug who zoomed around on my banana-bike taking pictures of my neighborhood and its inhabitants with a little red plastic camera my grandmother gave me for Christmas. I annoyed everyone by insisting on taking their picture. I am the same today, only more so.

This is the Pine Point Library as it appeared in 1968 from the top of Denver Street.

Before it was a library the building was The Boston Road School, where my maternal grandfather attended as a boy when he lived in a house on Boston Road long since torn down and presently occupied by a convenience store/gas station on the corner of Harvey Street. When The World Famous Thomas M. Balliet Elementary School opened, the Boston Road School closed for good.

It stood vacant for years until around 1930 when the city re-opened it as a library. The building's most prominent feature was the large bell tower seen below, which in my granddad's day would ring every morning warning slowpoke kids to start running to school. I don't believe I ever heard the bell when I was a kid, but then maybe I just don't remember. In any case that wooden building with the prominent bell tower was the most famous landmark in Pine Point for as long as it stood.

Here is an extremely rare photograph of the back of the library, where there was some kind of abandoned, boarded up structure that none the less was attached to the library itself. Nothing you could see from the inside of the library indicated that the back structure even existed. Maybe it was where a secret coven of librarians held decadent book worshiping rituals after hours!


Mary E.Carey said...

You haven't changed!

Anonymous said...

My father went to Boston Rd school in 1911 when he lived next door in a house that was last known as City Towing Co. around 1950. I lived at 191 Boston Rd in 1939 in a little house that sat far back from the street.