Brookline Historical Society
Photo Collection

Beacon St., Looking East From St. Paul, 1887
The building of carpenter Josiah N. Christie, with a sign hanging in front, is in the distance along the edge of Beacon. On the right is the house of Marshall Stearns and at the center is the house of Edward Serrano Dane.

From the 1887 photo series taken just before the widening of Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Beacon St. at St Paul St.
[Source: Brookline Public Library]
2 Charles St.
Sears family home, looking north. Left, rear: Buildings on Pleasant St. on property owned by James Stearns.
[Source: Smithsonian]
2 Charles St.
Sears family home. Beacon St. to the left. Only structure in photo that is still standing.
[Source: Smithsonian]
Beacon St. at Pleasant St.
Looking east on Beacon toward St. Paul St. Corner of building from the Stearns property visible on the right
Beacon St., Looking East From Pleasant St., 1893
Pleasant St. coming in at the left. On the right are the Thomas Sears house at 2 Charles St. (still standing) and 1265 Beacon St. is partially visible behind it. At the bottom of the first decline St. Paul St. is visible.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Beacon St. At Charles St.
From right to left:
  • Rear building of the Second Unitarian Society Parish House, 50 Sewall Ave., still standing although greatly modified.
  • Second Unitarian Society Parish House, 11 Charles St., built 1916, still standing
  • 3 Charles St., built circa 1916, , no longer standing
  • 2 Charles St., still standing

[Source: Brookline Preservation Department]
Beacon St. Looking West Toward Coolidge Corner, 1888
This photo was taken shortly before the widening of Beacon St. The house of Charles H. Stearns is on the left. Its apparent standing as a typical house on Beacon St. is misleading and requires explanation:
  • The house was built in 1767 before Beacon St. existed (1851). It fronted on Pleasant St. and was positioned at a right angle to the street. It is seen at an angle here because Pleasant St. ran diagonally across Beacon St. approximately where the carriage is seen.
  • The driveway (viewed in the Pleasant St. photos) is on the left side of the house in this photo, as is the front of the house.
  • Charles Stearns would soon be compelled to move his house 400 feet to the southwest to Harvard St. to accommodate the 1888 widening of Beacon St., a requirement he actively opposed.
With the death of Charles H. Stearns in October 1935, the house, the last holdout in a prime commercial location, was demolished. This photo also has an excellent view of how the planks were slightly raised on the wooden sidewalks
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Pleasant St. Viewed From Beacon St., 1886
Looking northeast from Beacon, just south of Coolidge Corner
James Whitney House, Pleasant St., 1887
Viewed from Beacon St.

From the 1887 photo series taken just before the widening of Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
James Whitney House, Pleasant St., 1887
Beacon St. is running along the left border of the photo, the turn onto Pleasant is just visible in the foreground. On the left, in the distance, is the Coolidge & Brother store.

From the 1887 photo series taken just before the widening of Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Beacon St., Just East of Harvard St., 1887
Looking east on Beacon. James S. Whitney house on the northwest corner of Pleasant & Beacon. Stearns house is visible through the trees on the right.
Charles H. Stearns House, circa 1887
Beacon St. looking east on the left, The old extension, since removed, of Pleasant St. to the right.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Charles H. Stearns House, Rear, circa 1887
Looking west on Beacon St. at the rear of the house which sits at a right angle to its entrance around the corner on Pleasant St. The house would soon be moved 400 feet to the southwest for the widening of Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Charles H. Stearns House, 265 Harvard St.
The back of the house is viewed on Beacon St.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Charles Stearns House, 265 Harvard St.
Looking west from the Thomas Sears house on Charles St. Foreground right: Charles Stearns house. Foreground left: out-housing of Charles Stearns. Far distance: Aspinwall Hill. The large mansion at the top of the hill with the tall spire was built by Clarence Esty, part of a group of Esty houses that have since been replaced by Schick Park. The spire was an observation tower equipped with a high-powered telescope that enabled detailed viewing of distant scenes. Harvard St., south of Beacon St., runs roughly left to right in the middle of the picture.
[Source: Smithsonian]
Beacon St. Looking West From Pleasant St., 1887
Near left is the side of the old school house that was torn down for the widening. In the far distance is the watering station in fron of the Coolidge & Brother store.
[Source: Digital Commonwealth]
Boulevard Trust Co., Coolidge Corner
Inbound trolley stand, Boulevard Trust building at 1319 Beacon St. and rear of Charles Stearns' house; Harvard St. on the right.
[Source: Joel Shield]
Coolidge Corner
Looking east on Beacon St.
Background left: carriages are traveling both directions on the northern side of Beacon St. with no visible traffic on the southern side, presumably because of the greater width of the northern side. The town passed an ordnance in 1924 established unidirectional traffic.
[Source: Iowa State]
Boulevard Trust Co., Coolidge Corner, Circa 1925
Inbound side of Beacon St. at Coolidge Corner. [right to left] Boulevard Trust at 1319 Beacon St.; Frank A. Russell, Real Estate, at 1315 Beacon St.; Charles Stearns' house; a glimpse of the storefront at 1299 Beacon St. housing real estate brokers; the steeple of the Second Unitarian Society Parish House at 11 Charles St. (still standing); the house of George W. Wightman at 3 Charles St.

Also shown is the trolley for route #940 which was essentially the forerunner to the "C" line.
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