Thursday, October 23, 2014

Family History Month and Another Residential History Project (October 23, 2104)

The High Street apartment, Cumberland, Rhode Island (2005)

Since Family History Month 2014 is coming to a close in just over a week, today is a good time to post another residential history to create and preserve for the descendants of my parents a photo history of all the family homes they occupied during more than 63 years of marriage (and counting). 

To document the history of the homes my parents have had, we begin with their first residence after they were married (which also happens to be my first residence as I was born 11 days short of a year after they were married). The house shown above is on High Street in Cumberland, Rhode Island and it was just up the street from my mother's parents' home at 551 High Street.  My parents occupied the apartment on the second floor of the home.

The Boswell Ave. apartment in Norwich, Connecticut (2005)

When my father left the Merchant Marine after I was born, he joined Sears Roebuck and Company as a management trainee on May 18, 1953 -- almost a month to the day before my sister was born. The first place the family lived was in an apartment my father found in the house pictured above on Boswell Avenue in Norwich. The family moved from Cumberland, Rhode Island to Norwich, Connecticut after my sister was born and my father began work as a Trainee in the Sears store in Norwich.

The family home was the right half of this duplex -- 15 Melrose Park Rd., Norwich, CT (2005)

Not long after we arrived in Norwich, it became clear that the Boswell Ave. location was not the place for a family with two children under two years old and my parents moved across the Thames River into a new duplex in a development on Melrose Park Rd. in Norwich (pictured above).

4 Glenn Street, Holyoke, Massachusetts (2005)

In March 1955, almost seven months to the day before the older of my two brothers was born, my father was promoted from Trainee and the family moved to Holyoke, Massachusetts where my father became the Big Ticket Sales Manager at the Sears store. Initially, we lived in the first-floor apartment at 4 Glen Street in Holyoke (shown above).

30 Taylor Street, Holyoke, Massachusetts (2005)
The family did not live on Glen Street for more than a few months and we next moved to Taylor Street in Holyoke.  We were living in the first floor apartment at 30 Taylor Street (entrance on the right in the photo above) when my brother was born and we got our first dog, Cindy. It was while living on Taylor Street that I began school in Kindergarten at the Highland Grammar School.

84 Falmouth Rd., Chicopee, Massachusetts (2005)
We were living on Taylor Street when my father was promoted to Assistant Manager of the Sears store in Holyoke on March 1, 1956.  Almost exactly two years later my father's father died on February 28, 1958 and shortly afterward my parents bought their first home in a development across the Connecticut River in Chicopee. The home had a full basement and three bedrooms. At the time, the home was painted red and we used to refer to it as "the Little Red House by the side of the road." The garage and breezeway pictured above did not exist when we lived there.

18 Joseph Rd., Salem, New Hampshire (2005)

In 1959, my father was transferred by Sears again and the family moved further north to Salem (then called "Salem Depot"), New Hampshire. My father was the Assistant Manager at a larger Sears store across the state line in Lawrence, Massachusetts and my parents bought their second home (shown above). The home on Joseph Road in Salem Depot was a nice Cape Cod with four bedrooms, two baths, a fireplace, full basement and a yard that bordered acres of woods. We were living in this house when the younger of my two brothers was born in Lawrence in 1961.

28 Essex Street Extension, Concord, New Hampshire (2005)

In 1962 the family moved further north again when my father was transferred to the Concord, New Hampshire Sears store as the Assistant Manager. We first moved to a house on Essex Street Extension in Concord where my parents decided to rent again. The home was three stories with a walk-out basement and a full attic.  It also had a garage to the left, but as of 2005 the garage no longer existed. The home was just across the street from White Park, one of Concord's largest city parks. The park had a pool, a maintained skating pond, athletic fields, and an outdoor hockey rink in winter.  There was also a good sized hill where we learned to ski.

4 Dartmouth Street, Concord, NH (2005)

We lived on Essex Street Extension in Concord for about two years before we moved to a home at the south end of Concord just a couple of blocks from Rundlett Jr. High School where I entered 7th grade. The house was another rental with a full basement, kitchen with a butler's pantry and serving window into the dining room, a full attic with a ladder up to a widow's walk, and a large side yard.

4 Dartmouth Street (August 2011)

In February of 1965, my father was transferred out of the stores and down to the Sears Eastern Territorial Office in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. My parents decided to buy a house again and this time they chose to build a new home in the growing residential community of Cinnaminson, New Jersey.  Cinnaminson was directly across the Delaware River from Northeast Philadelphia where the Sears Territorial Offices were located on Roosevelt Boulevard. The family remained in Concord so we children could finish the school year and so our new home could be completed. In July 1965 we left Concord and New England and moved south to New Jersey and our brand new house at 505 Lexington Drive in Cinnaminson. The home was a four-bedroom split level with recreation room, one and a half baths, kitchen, dining room, living room and laundry room -- all on about a quarter acre. This was the last family home my parents had.

505 Lexington Dr., Cinnaminson, New Jersey (circa 1968)

505 Lexington Dr. (September 2013)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 

All 2005 photographs by the author.  

The August 2011 photo of 4 Dartmouth Street and the September 2013 photo of 505 Lexington Drive captured with screenshot from Google Maps "Street View."
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ 



No comments:

Post a Comment