Noah Lincoln House, Boston

The Noah Lincoln House at the corner of North Bennet and Salem Streets in the North End, around 1898. Photo courtesy of Boston Public Library.

273_1898c-2Bbpl

The corner in 2014:

273_2014

Also known as the Avis House, the Noah Lincoln House was built around 1716, just a short distance down Salem Street from where Old North Church would be built only a few years later.  It was modified somewhat by Noah Lincoln in the early 1800s, and the third floor was added.  According to a turn-of-the-century book, it was still standing in 1899, but was probably demolished soon after and replaced with the present building.

Wells Adams House, Boston

Looking up Salem Street from the corner of Cooper Street, in Boston’s North End, before 1894. Photo courtesy of Boston Public Library.

271_1898c-2Bbpl

The same scene in 2014:

271_2014

The building in the first photo was known as the Wells Adams House, and according to late 19th century sources was built sometime in the late 1600s, probably around the same time as the Paul Revere House.  Like many other historic colonial-era North End buildings, it was demolished in 1894, and the current building was probably built shortly after that.  The only building that appears in both photos is the one on the far right; it was built in the 1840s, and is one of the few bow fronted houses that remains in the North End.

Old North Church, Boston

The view of Old North Church, looking down Hull Street, sometime in the 1890s. Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Company Collection.

018_1890-1899-2Bloc

About decade later, around 1909. Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Company Collection.

 

Old North Church in 2018:

 

From 1909 to 2018, not a whole lot has changed here – aside from the addition of parked cars in the 2011 photo, the only differences for the most part are minor cosmetic changes.  However, from 1898 to 1909, the scene looks very different – most of Hull Street was still dominated by small wood-framed buildings, some of which dated back to the mid 18th century.  The closest wood building on the right-hand side of the street is the Galloupe House, which purportedly was used as General Thomas Gage’s headquarters during the Battle of Bunker Hill.

The centerpiece of all three of the photos, however, is Old North Church, which looks almost unchanged.  In fact, though, the entire spire above the brick section is fairly new.  Although the church was built in 1723, making it the oldest church building in Boston, the spire was destroyed in a storm in 1804.  It was replaced with the one seen in the 1909 photo, which was destroyed by Hurricane Carol in 1954.  Despite that, the church still looks very much as it did on the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-five.