William F. Wright House, Springfield, Mass

The house at 15 Churchill Street in Springfield, around 1938-1939. Image courtesy of the Springfield Preservation Trust.

The house in 2017:

This house was built in 1898 for William F. Wright, although he does not appear to have lived here long, because by 1902 it was the home of attorney Wallace R. Heady, his wife Sarah, and their two young children, Joseph and Mary. Prior to moving into this house, he and Sarah had two other children, but they died young, just six months apart in 1898 and 1899. They would go on to have three more children, but Sarah died of tuberculosis in 1907, only a few months after their youngest child was born.

By the 1910 census, Heady was living here with the five children, his mother Elvira, and a 16 year old Irish servant. He was still working as a lawyer at the time, but in 1914 he was appointed as a judge for the Police Court of Springfield, which later became the District Court of Springfield. In the meantime, his oldest surviving child, Joseph, also became a lawyer. His education was interrupted by World War I, when he left high school to serve in the Navy, but after the war he graduated from high school and subsequently received his law degree from Boston University.

Wallace Heady served as a judge for 22 years, until his resignation in 1936 at the age of 71. His decision was prompted by Governor James Michael Curley’s newly-established policy requiring judges over the age of 70 to undergo physical and mental evaluations. Rather than submitting to an examination, he tendered his resignation, and he made his reasons very clear in his letter to Governor Curley.

When the first photo was taken in the late 1930s, Heady was still living here in this house, but he died a few years later in 1942. The house was subsequently sold, and at some point the wood shingles and clapboards on the exterior walls were replaced with asbestos shingles. Otherwise, though, the house retains its 19th century appearance, and in 1982 it became part of the Forest Park Heights Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.

David Bordeaux House, Springfield, Mass

The house at 19 Churchill Street in Springfield, around 1938-1939. Image courtesy of the Springfield Preservation Trust.

The house in 2017:


This Colonial Revival-style two-family home was built in 1898, and was originally owned by David Bordeaux, a photographer who had a studio on Main Street. In the 1900 census, he was 38 and was living here in one of the units with his wife Elizabeth, and they rented the other unit Dwight and Flora Hakes, a newlywed couple. Dwight worked as a bank clerk for the Springfield Institution for Savings, and he and Flora later moved to a house on Central Street, where he died of cancer in 1910 at the age of 36.

By the 1910 census, David and Elizabeth Bordeaux no longer lived here, but they still owned this property and rented it to two other families. It continued to be used primarily as a rental property throughout the next few censuses, with a variety of middle class residents whose occupations included a lithographer, a contractor, an architect, and an engineer. Most families did not seem to stay here for long, though, because each census between 1900 and 1940 has entirely different residents here. Around the time the first photo was taken, each unit was rented for $35 a month. One unit was the home of leather worker Benjamin Pressler, his wife Fay, and their two young children. The other was rented by Alice M. Welch, a divorced secretary who lived here with her five young children and a maid.

Today, the house is still a two-family home, with few changes to the exterior. The only significant difference is the wide, shingle-covered columns, most of which have since been replaced, except for the one on the second-story side porch on the left. Otherwise, though, the house has retained its original appearance, including the clapboards on the first floor and shingles on the second and third floors. Since 1982, the property has been part of the Forest Park Heights Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.

Fred E. Webb House, Springfield, Mass

The house at 33 Churchill Street in Springfield, around 1938-1939. Image courtesy of the Springfield Preservation Trust.

The house in 2017:


This house was built in 1895, and was originally owned by milk dealer Fred E. Webb. He and his wife Mary had two children, Maude and Everett, who grew up here, and by 1900 they also lived here with Mary’s parents and three boarders. Both Maude and Everett remained here as adults, with Maude working as a teacher, while Everett had a variety of jobs listed on the different census records. In 1933, Maude married Merrill L. Clifford, a printer who was originally from Maine. The couple lived here with her parents, although Fred died in 1939, right around the time that the first photo was taken.

The house remained in the family until 1965, when Merrill sold it, four years after Maude’s death. Since then, very little has changed with the exterior of the house. For the most part, it looks the same as it did when the Webb family lived here, and it has retained its original Queen Anne-style appearance. It is one of many well-restored historic homes in the neighborhood, and in 1982 it became part of the Forest Park Heights Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.

Frank B. Morse House, Springfield, Mass

The house at 41 Churchill Street in Springfield, around 1938-1939. Image courtesy of the Springfield Preservation Trust.

The house in 2017:

This Queen Anne-style house was built in 1893, right around the time that the Forest Park neighborhood was beginning to be developed on a large scale. It was originally the home of Frank and Alice Morse, although they apparently only lived here for a few years, because by the late 1890s the house was owned by Wilbur C. Tracy. He was a meat dealer, and he lived here with his wife Charlotte, his son, his parents, and his sister.

The Tracy family did not live here long, either, and by 1901 the house was owned by George M. Stebbins, a traveling salesman who also served in the police department as the city marshal. He lived here with his wife Mary, and by the 1910 census they also had a boarder living here, along with an 18 year old servant, Olga Lindquist. Mary died in 1927, but George was still living here when the first photo was taken. Olga was also still here, although she does not appear to have been a servant anymore. Instead, she lived here with her husband, Frank Keeling, who was a commercial artist, and she worked as a clerk in his studio.

George Stebbins died in 1942 at the age of 93, and the house was subsequently sold. At some point in the mid-20th century, the second story porch was enclosed, and the house was covered in asbestos shingles, losing much of its original Queen Anne details in the process. However, the house has since been restored to its original appearance, with hardly any difference from the first photo except for the lack of shutters. Along with the rest of the neighborhood, the house is now part of the Forest Park Heights Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.

George Dalton House, Springfield, Mass

The house at 47 Churchill Street in Springfield, around 1938-1939. Image courtesy of the Springfield Preservation Trust.

The house in 2017:


Churchill Street was among the first streets to be developed in the Forest Park Heights neighborhood, and nearly all of the homes on the street date back to the 1890s. The one exception is this two-family home, which was built in 1911. As a result, it has a different architectural style than the other houses, most of which are Queen Anne-style homes like the one on the left. Instead, this house has a Colonial Revival-style design, with a rather unusual combination of a stuccoed first floor and shingled second floor.

The house appears to have first been owned by a George Dalton, although he did not live here for very long. By the 1920 census, there were two families renting the house. In one unit was Philip S. Silbert, a flour salesman who lived here with his wife Flora and their infant daughter Eleanor. The other unit was rented by William J. Rayner, the treasurer of Gilbert & Barker Manufacturing Company, a West Springfield-based company that made gasoline pumps. At the time, he was living here with his wife Alice and two children, George and Elizabeth.

By the 1930 census, the property was owned by Morris Kaufman, a clothing salesman who lived here in one of the units and rented out the other one. He and his wife Yettie were Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe, and they lived here with their daughter Lillian and son Jule. By the time the first photo was taken, the house had become much more crowded. Both of the children were married and living here with their spouses, although Lillian died in the fall of 1939 at the age of 31, leaving her husband Louis and their young daughter Bernadine.

After the first photo Jule and his wife Sallee continued living here with his parents, and they raised their two children here. Yettie died in 1953 and Morris in 1965, but the house remained in the Kaufman family for decades, until Sallee’s death in 1998. During this time, very little has changed with the house’s exterior, and in 1982 the property became part of the Forest Park Heights Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.

Charles Teske House, Springfield, Mass

The house at 268 Sumner Avenue at the corner of Churchill Street in Springfield, around 1938-1939. Image courtesy of the Springfield Preservation Trust.

The house in 2017:

This house was built in 1893, and was one of the earlier homes to be built in the Forest Park Heights neighborhood. It had a desirable location along Sumner Avenue, directly opposite Forest Park, and it was originally the home of Charles Teske. However, he did not live here long, because he sold the house around 1896. It does not appear to have been occupied during the 1900 census, but by 1910 it was owned by Icilius T. Alstrom, who lived here with his wife Carrie and their two sons, Albert and Harvey.

By 1915, the house had been sold again, to Bertram Craig. He lived here with his wife Catherine, their daughter Madeline, and, in later years, Madeline’s husband Richard Lovekin. During the 1930 census, they were also renting part of the house to another family for $48 per month. Catherine died later in 1930, though, and within a few years the rest of the family had moved. By the 1940 census, the house was owned by dentist Robert N. Cushman, who lived here with his sister, Emma J. Wilson. They were living here when the first photo was taken, and remained until Emma’s death in 1943 and Robert’s in 1949.

Over the years, this house has remained well-preserved, along with the houses in the background of both photos. The only significant difference is the enclosed second-story porch, but overall it is an excellent example of Queen Anne-style architecture in Forest Park. Along with the rest of the neighborhood, it is now part of the Forest Park Heights Historic District on the National Register of Historic Places.