Brookline Historical Society
Photo Collection

Beacon St. & Marion, 1887
House of Austin W. Benton. Beacon St. looking east to the left, Marion St. to the right. Stone wall of Raymond Mansion visible across Beacon. The house, whose rear section was right at the edge of Beacon Street, was moved shortly after this photo was taken for the 1887 widening. It appears that the house was moved twice: first, it was rotated to face the apex of Beacon and Marion thus moving its extended tail sections away from Beacon to make room for the additional 110 feet of the widening; second, back to its original alignment but further down Marion where is still stands today.

From the 1887 photo series taken just before the widening of Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Beacon St., William H. Hill House, 1887
Beacon St. at Short St. No longer standing. Raymond mansion to the right on Summit Ave.

From the 1887 photo series taken just before the widening of Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Beacon St. just West of Short St.
Grace Stevenson House on Corey Hill. Houses on Prospect St. visible on the left of photo.
Beacon St. just West of Short St.
Grace Stevenson House on north side of Beacon St., just west of Short St.. House of H. B. Eager on Mason Terrace (formerly Prospect St.) visible in the upper left of photo. Likely taken in 1887 before the widening of Beacon.
Beacon St. between Short Ave. & today's Lancaster Terrace
Looking west on Beacon; property of John M. Clark, house in the distance
Corey Hill from Beacon St.
Beacon St.. & Brandon Hall, 1903
Brandon Hall, Beacon St., 1912
1566 and 1560 Beacon St.
North side of Beacon St. just west of Mason Terrace. The house on the left was built in 1892 and purchased by King Gillette, inventor of the safety razor, in 1907. It was torn down in 1944. The house on the right was designed by well-known architect Arthur VInal and built in 1889. It was acquired circa 1900 by Fred McQuestern who also owned land situated behind the house that fronted on Mason Terrace. In 1903, he moved the house up the hill to its present location at 41 Mason Terrace and constructed an even larger house at 1560 Beacon St. That was torn down in 1967 and replaced with a large apartment building.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
1566 Beacon St.
Built in 1892 for Benjamin Lombard Jr., a banker and real estate executive. The Lombards moved to 349 Coomonwealth Ave. circa 1905 and King Gilette, the inventor of the modern razor blade, bought the house circa 1907 and lived there until 1913. The house was torn down in 1944.
1575 Beacon St., March 1921
[Source: Olmsted]
Beacon St. Looking East, Circa 1913
Several blocks west of Washington Sq., looking east. 1714 and 1712 Beacon St., still standing, are on the far left. This is a fairly unique photo showing the simultaneous use of automobiles and horse-drawn carriages. Note that the eastbound vehicles are using the north side of the road while the carriage is on the adjacent bridle path. Brookline passed an ordinance in 1924 dictating unidirectional traffic flow, restricting the eastbound traffic to the south side of the road (obscured on the right side of the photo).
Virginia Aiken and Babcock Electrics, circa 1912
Virginia Elsie Aiken is pictured in front of the Hotel Beaconsfield, 1731 Beacon St., (destroyed by fire in 1966) driving one of the demonstration cars for Babcock Electric, a firm that first employed her as a teenager. Born in 1895, she moved from Chicago to Brookline, around the age of 16, and attended the Runkle School.

She lived with her father's sister Viola and Viola's husband, Day Baker, first at 145 Winthrop Road then at 33 Dwight St. Her uncle was the New England representative for the General Vehicle Co. (Buffalo, NY) and head of the Electric Vehicle Club of Boston. Remarkably, while still at the Runkle School, Virginia assumed the position of New England representative of the Buffalo-based Babcock Electric Carriage Company, responsible for sales throughout the six-state region. Aiken operated out of the Brandon Garage at 643 Washington Street, where she maintained an office, employed a stenographer and a bookkeeper, and kept several models of Babcock Electrics to demonstrate to prospective buyers.

Extensive details are avalable at Muddy River Musings.
Beacon St., 1912
Washington Sq., 1909
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Fire Station, Washington Sq.
With first steamer, bought in 1873
Washington Sq. Engine #2 House
Washington St., Washington Sq. In use today. Engine relocated from Devotion Engine House
Washington Sq. Engine #2 House
Team from Washington Sq. Engine #2 Combination 4 House
Across the street from the fire house. 676 Washington St. is to the left, still standing. He tall man with the moustache is identified as Jack Norton.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Washington Sq. Engine #2 Combination 4 House
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