The old City Hall building in Springfield, viewed from across Court Square, between 1865 and 1885. Photo courtesy of New York Public Library.
The scene in 2014:
Court Square hasn’t changed much in the past 130-150 years, but the buildings beyond it have. The first photo shows the old City Hall building, which as mentioned in this post was built in 1855, shortly after Springfield was incorporated as a city, and burned in 1905, allegedly as a result of a monkey overturning a kerosene lamp. I don’t know the circumstances surrounding a primate having access to open flames in City Hall, but that’s how the story goes. The present City Hall was completed in 1913, and has managed to survive for over a century without any problems from arsonist apes.