Charles Bulfinch’s Almshouse in Salem MA

The Architect of Washington DC Built this and Boston…


Poor House Salem MA

The City Almshouse (or Poor Farm) which stood on Collins Cove, on present day Memorial Drive, for over 140 years, was built in 1816 from plans by Charles Bulfinch. There had been other almshouses in Salem in earlier times, one at the corner of Summer and Broad Streets, and one at the northeast corner of Salem Common. Bulfinch was notorious for connecting tunnels to his buildings. Did this one have access to the 3 miles of tunnels in town? I wonder if they could of ran a brothel out of the women’s wing?

During its original building there is a story about a mystery. Several foundations were laid, but they all cracked, until…They realized that heat was escaping from the volcano in the cove which was cracking the foundation. Once they put in proper ventilation for the heat vents the problem was solved. The capstone to the volcano stands now on top of Eagle Hill in Salem Woods.

Also the threat of living in this building was enough to end the Witchcraft Hysteria of 1811. When the master of the house visited an indigent woman on Northey Street, who had gathered a thousand people to her door after her complaints of suffering fits from a witch in Boston, and ended the hysteria by offering the woman the chance to work in the poor house or leave town; she left town. This was the same year they closed down the old Witch Gaol from the first hysteria and broke ground for the new jail; I assume they expected a larger turn out this time…

This almshouse was adjacent to the town farms, allowing able-bodied residents to work on the farm to offset their maintenance. The building was a five-story brick residence overlooking Collins Cove and could house 100 residents.The number of residents grew from 70 in the 1870’s to 146 by 1883. In 1884, a second building was built next to the almshouse to serve as a hospital for contagious diseases and for the mentally ill. The hospital was known under many names, such as “contagious hospital”, “insane hospital” and “pesthouse”.  The adjacent almshouse was razed in 1954.

In the early 1980’s, developers of a condominium complex inadvertently reactivated an unsolved mystery when they discovered 5 headstones on the property, probably from early residents of the almshouse or hospital. Who these unfortunates were is still not known.

An article from Lynn Sunday Post quotes Frank Remon, a former harbor master saying that there were a number of persons buried on the old city hospital land and that it was known as “Hospital Burying Ground.”

 

Poor Farm on Collins Cove Salem MA10202476441884898

 

Mr-Zac-Looking-Down-With-Hat

 

~Mr. Zac

Come back every Tuesday at 3PM for new stories about Salem and images from the Salem Trilogy.

Salem Fagin

The First Boy’s Club and Tunnels…

The First Boy’s Club in the country was held in a building attached to this tunnel. In fact the three locations that the club first resided in were all attached to the smuggling tunnels in Salem MA. The first was the Downing Block next to the Peabody Essex Museum. The second location was in the Salem Lyceum that previous housed a lecture series where Alexander Graham Bell introduced his phone publicly at. The third location was in the old Essex County Bank building built by Charles Bulfinch who became the Architect of D.C. who built all the tunnels under our capitol.

The Boy’s Club learned an important early lesson; keep the kids in a brick building. For the one time they were housed in a wooden building, the Lyceum, they burned it down.  The location where James Russell Lowell introduced the Dante Club’s translation of The Inferno was burned to the ground by these children.

So why was it so important to have these economically challenged children in building attached to the tunnels? Were they helping the sailors and captains smuggle in town? Were they assisting in the runaway slaves attempts at gaining freedom? Or were they run by a Salem Fagin who had them act like the Artful Dodger and break into the homes that also were attached to the tunnels?

Who is to say, but it makes you think…

For more info read Sub Rosa to find out how Salem shaped America and your lives! Available at Remember Salem, Jolie Tea, Wicked Good Books, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon.com. Also to learn more stories like this first hand, book a tour with the Salem Smugglers’ Tour!

Salem House Press
http://www.salemhousepress.com

Vintage Salem Morning!

Old Town Hall built on William Brown’s mansion property. William Brown was a Tory and ran to Newfoundland during the Revolutionary War. His kin Lucy Brown Derby inherited it and gave it to her father in Law Elias Hasket Derby Sr. This became America’s first millionaire’s 4th mansion in town. He only got to live in the mansion for a year before he died. Then Lucy got the mansion when her husband Elias Hasket Derby Jr. inherited the property. After spending his portion of the 10th largest estate in American history, Elias started selling off the mansion and grounds little by little.  In 1814 he will sell the property to the town to build Old Town Hall. Tunnel designers Samuel McIntire and Charles Bulfinch worked to create the building. One tunnel leaves the back of the building and connects to the Old Naumkeag Trust Building. It was helpful a few years ago to run cable for internet between the two buildings…

For more info read Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City and Sub Rosa by Chris Dowgin available at Remember Salem, Jolie Tea, Wicked Good Books, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon.com.

Bulfinch Tunnels

Library of Congress Tunnel

Bulfinch Tunnels. This is part of the tunnel system between the Adams and Jefferson buildings of the Library of Congress that is at least 4 levels deep. Charles Bullfinch gave a tour of Boston’s and Salem’s underground through their tunnels to President James Monroe and was hired to dig Washington D.C.’s tunnels.

Find out more in Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City and its sequel Sub Rosa.

Charles Bulfinch the Architect of Washington D.C.

The Tunnel Guy…

Charles Bulfinch was hired after he gave President James Monroe a tour of the tunnels he built throughout the Boston Back Bay Neighborhoods. In 1785 he developed an elaborate public works project taking down the trimounts in Boston to fill in the mud flats of the Charles River. It proved to be a convenient ruse to help him hide all of the tunnel dirt from the State House, governor’s mansion, and various Beacon Hill mansions.

After he gave the president a tour of Boston, then they toured Salem through the tunnels that emulated his Boston project in 1801 by filing in 5 ponds and a river leaving the Salem Common. The tour went through Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Crowninshield’s , Stephen White’s, Joseph “Jr.” White’s, Superior Court Justice Joseph Story’s, and Senator Nathaniel Silsbee’s homes by tunnel.

Bulfinch will restore our capitol after it was razed by the British during the 1812 War and connect all of its major buildings by a series of tunnels that are at least 4 levels deep. To find out more book a tour on the Salem Smugglers’ Tour of the Historic Salem Common! www.salemtunneltour.com
More than Witches!

The Men Bribed in 1811 by the British to Build the Second Bank of the United States and Their New Manions

Things Never Change…

First National Bank of the united States Boston Branch.
First National Bank Boston Branch built by Charles Bulfinch.

The First National Bank of the United States charter was let lapse in 1811. The bank Alexander Hamilton fought for proved to be only a boon for the British. For they might of lost the Revolutionary War, Hamilton sold 70% of our treasury to them in shares of our new national bank. Which is the reason the bank was let to dissolve as its charter expired. In the same year of the closing of the Old Witch Gaol, the groundbreaking of the new prison, and the second Witchcraft Hysteria agents of Britain entered Salem and bribed Thomas H. Perkins, Senator Nathaniel Silsbee, the head of the Massachusetts Whig Party Stephen White, Senator Daniel Webster, Associate Superior Court Justice Joseph Story, and Joseph White to restore a new national bank so England can control our treasury once more. All of these men will erect or build new mansions that year.

The Rothschilds proclaimed that their investments in the First National Bank of the United States to be restored or they would bring us to a most disastrous war to force us to create a new national bank to handle the war debt, in which they did. A year after the bank’s closure the War of 1812 started. After the war in 1816 we chartered the Second Bank of the United States. Silsbee, Perkins, Crowninshield, Webster and Story would join Salem’s William Gray  (who served in the first bank) as directors in the new bank’s Boston branch. Story and Silsbee would be directors in  the main branch in Philadelphia as well.

Below are the faces and mansions they built:

Benjamin Crowninshield a mjor figure in th enovel Sub Rosa.
Benjamin Crowninshield
Benjamin Crowninshield House
Opium dealer Thomas Perkins featured in th ebook Sub Rosa.
Opium Dealer Thomas H. Perkins. Went from slave trader to opium dealer.
Thomas Perkins House at 7 Ash Street.
Possibly Captain Joseph White or Captain Joseph “Jr.” White his nephew who preceded him in death.
Joseph White Murder Salem MA
Captain Joseph White being murdered by his nephew Steven White in 1830.
Joseph White bought this house in 1811 which would be the house he was murdered in during the year 1830. This is the mansion from the game Clue.
Senator Nathaniel Silsbee.
Nathaniel Silsbee House.
Daniel Webster a character in Sub Rosa.
Daniel Webster. His son marries Stephen White’s daughter and his brother-in-law marries the other daughter. Webster prosecuted innocent men for Stephen White to get away with murdering his uncle. The two would go on to assassinate President Harrison.
Joseph Story Smuggler in Salem MA
The man who shaped the Constitution, Associate Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story. Brother-in-law to Stephen White. He is the most responsible for the interpretation of the Constitution we follow.
Judge Joseph story a character in the book Sub Rosa.
Judge Joseph Story House.
Ground was broken in 1811 for the new jail that was to replace the one from the Witchcraft Hysteria. None of the above would ever spend time here besides Stephen White who was on the state prison commission.

The Second Bank of the United States would lose its charter in 1836. In 1833 Stephen White was visited by President Jackson at his home off the Common during the Bank Wars. Jackson visited the banker behind Webster, the country’s most powerful senator, and explained to him he was to lose his shares in the bank when the charter lapsed in 1836 because once again the British had over 70% of the shares in the bank. Soon after leaving White’s house he would suffer a failed assassination attempt in name of saving the bank. Secretary of State James Knox Polk would survive a typhoid poisoning, but will later succumb to a similar poisoning 3 months after leaving the White House. Henry Clay, Daniel Webster, and Stephen White would later promote William Harrison for president and poison him by typhoid a month into office for refusing to create a third national bank. Stephen White will die a few months afterward leaving Clay and Webster to poison Polk and once again raise another to president to create the third bank and poison him when he refuses. Zachary Taylor,  the only Whig president after Harrison, will die 16 months into office of typhoid. During his successor Millard Fillmore’s term Webster and Clay will both die in 1852 without ever seeing a third national bank created. The Whig Party that Clay, White, and Webster created to build the third national bank will fold after their deaths.

Sub Rosa Book CoverTo find out more about our nation’s banking history, how the Federal Reserve works, and the presidential assassinations in hope of creating a third national bank read Sub Rosa. Advance Reader Copies available on Amazon.com and a Jolie Tea in Salem MA

. Official release is July 4th 2017.

Charles Bulfinch and the Tunnels in Salem, Boston, and Washington D.C.

bulfinch-tunnels

Charles Bulfinch served from 1791 to 1795 on Boston’s board of selectmen for free… He stepped down when there was a glut of tunnels/houses to be built. Then he returns in 1799. From 1799 to 1817, he was the chairman of Boston’s board of selectmen improving the city’s streets, drains, and lighting. In 1800 opium smuggler Russell Sturgis was on the board with him. Through this connection he would meet Thomas H. Perkins and build the Perkins School for the Blind, Mass General Hospital, and the Beacon Hill Monument that Perkins financed.

“Boston was the child of my Father and he did pretty much what he wanted with it,” his son said. Bulfinch designed the Boston Common, remodelling Faneuil Hall (1805), and built India Wharf. Bulfinch had built the Federal Street Theatre where Edgar Allan Poe’s mother and Grandmother performed in.
It can be said he built Beacon Hill. Built Colonnade Row between West and Mason on the Common which have been taken down. Bulfinch built 3 houses for Essex Junto member Harrison Otis Gray in Boston. Then 87 Mt. Vernon Street for Stephen Higginson Jr. Plus 13,15, 17 Chestnut Street for Mrs. Swan. Also Bulfinch was friends with Hon. Stephen Longfellow, the poet’s father, which might confirm the existence of tunnels leading from the Longfellow House in Cambridge, MA.

He also became the Police Superintendent 1794. Imagine the man who was most responsible for the conveyance of all the smuggling in Boston and Salem through his tunnels, a Police Superintendent? He had to take the job because he was suffering from being on the brink of bankruptcy. He had a small respite two years later, but he continued to have financial troubles. He was building the State House in 1796 at the time he received only $1,400 for designing and overseeing its construction. In 1811 he went to debtor’s prison. He spent time in the jail he built himself. He also risked bankruptcy in 1815 filling in the flats to extend Charles Street to West Boston Bridge.

When you are digging tunnels, you need property to hide the dirt in. If that property is on a marsh or a river even better. I assume he overextended himself in between payments for the buildings he was erecting or the tunnel digging was proceeding slower than expected.

He also designed the Massachusetts State Prison (1803); Boylston Market (1810); University Hall for Harvard University (1813–1814); the Meeting House in Lancaster, Massachusetts (1815–17); and the Bulfinch Building home of the Ether Dome at Massachusetts General Hospital (1818), its completion overseen by Alexander Parris, who was working in Bulfinch’s office at the time the architect was summoned to Washington.

Charles Bulfinch from 1818-1830 was architect of DC with a salary of $2,500 plus expenses. He met President James Monroe in the Summer of 1817 and spent two weeks travelling with him in Massachusetts. Bulfinch brought him to Salem to show him the tunnels in Salem at Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Crowninshield’s, Senator Nathaniel Silsbee’s House, Superior Court Justice Joseph Story’s, and Stephen White’s homes. Benjamin Crowninshield, Nathaniel Silsbee, and Joseph Story were directors of the Boston Branch of The Second Bank of the United States in the building built by Bulfinch. Stephen White was a major investor in the bank. After this visit Monroe had hired Bulfinch to rebuild Washington after the siege of the capitol during the 1812 War.

In Salem he built Old Town Hall, The Essex Bank Building known as the Boy’s Club, and Looby Asylum. Then many others follow his design of connecting tunnels through exterior chimneys that prevent flashing problems and create a draw system through their flues for the tunnels in town. It was another writer Ralph Waldo Emerson’s maternal grandmother’s brother Jonathan Waldo who engineered the design of the tunnels in Salem to have a brick arch supporting them along their course.

As the Architect of D.C., Bulfinch completed the Capitol’s wings and central portion, designed the western approach and portico, and constructed the Capitol’s original low wooden dome to his own design (replaced by the present cast-iron dome completed in the mid-1860s). In 1829 Bulfinch completed the construction of the Capitol, 36 years after its cornerstone was laid. During his interval in Washington, Bulfinch also drew plans for the State House in Augusta, Maine (1829–1832), a Unitarian Church and prison in Washington, D.C.. In 1796 he built the State House in Connecticut for the Blue Light Federalists.

During his tenure he connected the major buildings in the capitol by an elaborate tunnel design that runs at least 3 levels deep. I was able to venture between the Adams and Jefferson wings of the Library of Congress through the 3 levels of tunnels that attach them. They are open to the public, but the book shelves are not. I wanted to take a picture of my books on their shelves. I found out your not allowed and they will have someone go and fetch the book for you. In the end I do have a Library of Congress Card. Also you now enter the capitol Building as a tourist through the tunnel in front of it. Senators tend to use the tunnels to avoid the public. Bulfinch left the job eventually because it could not support his family.

Charles Bulfinch’s sister Elizabeth marries into the Coolidge family. Her husband traces back to the 1630 Watertown resident John Coolidge. President Calvin Coolidge also traces back to him. Elizabeth Bulfinch Coolidge married Joseph Coolidge II. Their son Joseph Coolidge III in 1824 attended the reunion of Thomas Jefferson and the Marquis de Lafayette at Monticello. He might of journeyed with Lafayette from Salem to Virginia. There he met Jefferson’s granddaughter Ellen Wayles Randolph, whom he married the following year. Their son was Thomas Jefferson Coolidge. He was one of Perkins’ opium dealers in Russell & Co. Thomas Jefferson Coolidge Jr. would be part owner of United Fruit who had a small genocide in Guatemala. So Charles’ sister married a bad banana…

Charles’ children would do better. One son Thomas wrote Bulfinch’s Mythology. It was a posthumous 1881 compilation of his three previous works: The Age of Fable, or Stories of Gods and Heroes (1855), The Age of Chivalry, or Legends of King Arthur (1858), Legends of Charlemagne, or Romance of the Middle Ages (1863). Its a classic work of mythology, the standard and still in print 160 years later. Edward Everett Hale compiled his previous works to make the Mythology. It includes various stories from the Matter of Rome, the Matter of Britain and the Matter of France, respectively. Bulfinch wrote in his preface: “Our work is not for the learned, nor for the theologian, nor for the philosopher, but for the reader of English literature, of either sex, who wishes to comprehend the allusions so frequently made by public speakers, lecturers, essayists, and poets, and those which occur in polite conversation.” It was dedicated to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow who was a friend of the family.
His other son George Greenleaf Bulfinch’s son is Francis Vaughn Bulfinch the architect. Shepley, Rutan and Coolidge built the original Italian Villa at Castle Hill in Ipswich MA for Richard T. Crane Jr. who was a member of the Jekyll Island Club who met in private to plan the Federal Reserve. He also was a bootlegger who built his home on the ocean. The Italian Villa was torn down because he promised his wife if she still hated it after ten years they would build a new one. It was torn down after ten years for the current house.

I used to work in the home every weekend for a catering company owned by a dignitary and high Buddhist monk from the territory of Sikkim in India. May you always be well Sonam.

Here is a little secret, if you want to tour the current mansion which has been in Witches of Eastwick and Ghosts of Girlfriend’s Past for free and get great parking; just tell the guard you forgot your vest over the weekend from working the last party and he will let you drive up to the mansion and park. The grounds were designed by the Olmsted Brothers. Their father was the landscape designer of the Columbian Expedition in Chicago where Moses Farmer would die after lighting the city.
In 1844 Charles Bulfinch would die. I wonder if he is still building tunnels or wormholes between worlds on the other side?
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For more tales like this about how Salem MA has shaped American History read Sub Rosa by Christopher Jon Luke Dowgin available at Barnes & Nobel, Amazon.com, and your favorite local independent book seller.
Ask for it by name!

Charles Bulfinch and Salem MA

Tunnels Are My Calling Card…

Essex Bank Building Salem Ma Built by Charles Bulfinch

Essex Bank Building

11 Central Street

Built in 1811 by Charles Bulfinch for the Essex Bank. It is rumored that the National Capital Building that he built was connected to a tunnel so that members of Congress can escape through. He also built three levels of tunnels running from the Adams building to the Jefferson Building in the Library of Congress I got to walk through. He was the Architect of D.C. and was on hand to rebuild the capital after the British burned it down during the 1812 War. He also will build the Loobey Asylum where the Essex Institute is today, the TB Hospital on Collins Cove, and Old Town Hall in Salem. He also built many homes on Beacon Hill in Boston, one in which Edgar Alan Poe lived in. He also built the Essex Bank Building.

The Essex Bank was founded in 1792 and was the first in Essex County. William Gray was its first president. In 1795 the Essex Bank was in the Samuel Ward Building where the Gathering Church was on the corner of Essex Street and Derby Square. In 1805 they occupied the Central Building. In 1811 the Essex Bank moved here. In 1817 James King and Shepard Gray , Cashiers, robbed the bank. The Essex Bank folded in 1819. In 1831 two former employees James King and his son James Charles King dies. Their occupations were Cashier and Book Keeper. They both were members of the Essex Lodge. The First National Bank, the office for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Custom House, and the Mercantile Bank were also housed in this building. In 1899 the Salem Fraternity occupies the building and renovates it to their needs. They would be the first boys club in the country. This was their third location after they burned down the wooden Salem Lyceum building down. The first building was brick and the third, so they preserved their arsonist activities.

Tunnels lead from the Naumkeag Block to this building and continue on to where the old distillery and wharf was, built by John Derby. Also the tunnels lead from the Pickman-Derby Building to here. Plus William Gray Jr. had his building on Central Street connected and hired Charles Bulfinch who built the tunnels attached to the nation’s Capital Building. The basement brick walls have been covered. The owner wants me to break into the house through the tunnels…

Charles Bulfinch

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Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City!
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