Traditional American Thanksgiving in Art and Song

Among America’s most beloved 19th century renderings of Thanksgiving Day are Currier & Ives lithographs, Grandma Moses’s paintings, and Lydia Marie Child’s famous poem/song “Over the River and Through the Wood.” In the 20th Century, Norman Rockwell depicted an idealized version of American Thanksgiving. By Helen Breen… Continue reading Traditional American Thanksgiving in Art and Song

After electoral defeat, neither Adams President attended his successor’s inauguration

John Adams, our second President, and his eldest son John Quincy Adams, our sixth President, both quietly departed Washington on the eve of their opponent’s inauguration. Each did so in good conscience, leaving their successors, Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson respectively, to enjoy two terms in office.… Continue reading After electoral defeat, neither Adams President attended his successor’s inauguration

Daniel Low’s Silver “Witch Spoons” among Salem’s First Souvenirs

By Helen Breen Daniel Low & Co. started on the bottom floor of the First Church, Unitarian, 231 Essex Street at the corner of Washington Street in Salem. The jewelry company purchased the church in 1923, elegantly refitting the structure as an appropriate setting for its luxurious merchandise. THE BUSINESS Daniel Low & Co. jewelry… Continue reading Daniel Low’s Silver “Witch Spoons” among Salem’s First Souvenirs

Boston Irish Long Remembered the 1834 Charlestown Convent Fire

Featured image: Woodcut image of the 1834 burning of the Ursuline Convent in Charlestown, Massachusetts. Catholics and fair minded Bostonians were dismayed by the tragedy. by Helen Breen This week marks the 183th anniversary of the burning and ransacking of the Ursuline Convent in Charlestown, Massachusetts on August 11, 1834. The outrage would smolder in the… Continue reading Boston Irish Long Remembered the 1834 Charlestown Convent Fire

A Nostalgic Glance at Harvard’s Early History

*From it’s earliest days, the people of Ipswich made frequent contributions to Harvard College. William Hubbard of Ipswich, the son of the Rev.William Hubbard, in his twenty-first year, ‘was one of that remarkable group of nine young men whom Harvard College sent forth in 1642, as the first specimens of high culture achieved in the… Continue reading A Nostalgic Glance at Harvard’s Early History

A Heated Battle – Lodge vs. Curley 1936

In the midst of the inflammatory rhetoric of the American Presidential campaign, let reflect on the no less acrimonious Massachusetts US Senate race of 1936. In the ring – Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., a Harvard educated Brahmin of impeccable credentials. His opponent – James Michael Curley, combat-scarred Irish politician who had served as mayor of Boston and Governor of Massachusetts.… Continue reading A Heated Battle – Lodge vs. Curley 1936

The Merchant Princes, Cyrus Wakefield and George Peabody

by Helen Breen Question: What Do Wakefield and Peabody Have In Common? Answer: Both renamed their Essex County towns in the mid 19th century to honor their “favorite sons” and benefactors – Cyrus Wakefield (1811-1873) and George Peabody (1795-1869). The 19th century “merchant princes” of Boston were ambitious, clever men who made their fortunes in… Continue reading The Merchant Princes, Cyrus Wakefield and George Peabody

Glen Magna and the Joseph Peabody Family of Salem

The Glen Magna Estate is now managed as a non-profit by the Danvers Historical Society. Photo courtesy North of Boston magazine Article by Helen Breen Before the advent of the modern transportation, affluent city dwellers often built their summer residences within a few miles of home. Such was the case when shipping magnate Joseph Peabody… Continue reading Glen Magna and the Joseph Peabody Family of Salem