Monday, November 5, 2007

Apollo Garden

Bromley, G.W., Bromley, W.S., 1895 (copyright © 2000 by Cartography Associates.)
David Rumsey Collection

In the previous post, there was mention of an Apollo garden, and a hotel. Never having heard of any of this, I decided to see what I could find. The map segment above shows the beginning of Amory street, starting at Centre street at the top right. This is the only stretch that I could imagine having room for a hotel and garden. The industrial block is there in this 1895 map, with the Rockland Brewery a foundry and the German Arbeiter Club, but there is also some open property. Of the two large wood frame buiding shown, one is an Amory family property, and the other is owned by a T. Jefferson Coolidge. I checked an online Boston directory and found an Apollo listed at 107 Amory street. Feed the address into Google Maps, and Bingo! the Coolidge property is ground zero. Back to the Boston Public Library archive of old Boston Globe articles, and I found the following two, the first from 1879. Horse-thieves! Washing-machine thieves! The second article mentions Father Cummins and Sacred Heart church in Roslindale. Cummins Highway in Roslindale and Mattapan is named for him. It sounds like they had quite a time. I drive through Amory street a few times a year, and it's hard to imagine any kind of "garden" in that spot. It does get referred to as Roxbury and Jamaica Plain alternately. We'll call it Jamaica Plain and claim the Apollo garden as our own.

From the Boston Daily Globe, January 12, 1879

Thomas J. Duffy of Jamaica Plain reported at Station 10 last evening, that his horse and sleigh were stolen about 6 o'clock while he was in the hotel at the Apollo garden, on Amory street, transacting business. The team consisted of a sorrel horse, silver-mounted harness, sleigh, and in the latter was a large pocket-book containing papers and $13, a Eureka washing-machine, two robes, blanket and whip.

Boston Daily Globe June 3, 1896

New And Varied Attractions At First of Father Cummins' Summer Outdoor Festivals for Season of 96.

The first in the series of Fr Cummins' summer out-door festivals for season of 96 takes place at Apollo garden, Amory st, Roxbury, Saturday of next week, June 13.

At this, his fourth annual monster summer outing, many new and varied attractions will be offered for the thousands of patrons who are sure to attend.

The famous St Augustine cadet band of South Boston, the champion juvenile musical organization of New England, will give concerts day and evening.

Gaellic and Olympian games will be competed for valuable prizes by noted athletes; high class vaudeville entertainments will be given by artists from the leading Boston theatres; there will be dancing on the lawn and in the grand pavilion.

In the evening the grounds will be handsomely illuminated with hundreds of electric lights and Chinese and Japanese lanterns and a magnificant display of fireworks will be given.

The grand carnival for the children takes place in the afternoon. Punch and Judy, steam carousel the Mexican burros and games and sports will be given for the amusement of the little ones. Twenty booths for refreshments will be in charge of the young ladies of Sacred Heart parish, Roslindale.

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