Jolie Tea in Salem and a Good Read

Advance Reader Copies of Sub Rosa for Sale…

Sub Rosa Book Cover

Enjoy reading over a cup of tea at Jolie Tea in Salem, MA. They are the first shop to sell these ARCs. What is even more amazing than their 200+ collection of fine teas, is that the building they are in is connected to the tunnels of Salem. Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Crowninshield had his Merchant Bank in the building. He also was one of many politicians from Salem who was a director of the Second Bank of the United States Boston Branch. Crowninshield was one of many in Salem in 1811 that was bribed by the British to work to create the bank which would sell 70% of its shares to the British after the War of 1812.  Across the Common you can also see Senator Nathaniel Silsbee’s house who also was bribed and became a director in the bank.  In this building Sophia Peabody had lived for a period of time when Nathaniel Hawthorne lived down the street. Hawthorne’s uncle had a stagecoach company with offices in the building or next door.

As rich as the tea at Jolie is the history connected to the building. Looking over your tea cup you can see through the window the Salem Common that was developed to hide massive amounts of tunnel dirt in. It is the same location the first National Guard unit was formed on. Their descendants dug the tunnels and hid the dirt. Just to the left is the historic Hawthorne Hotel. On that property was originally the Franklin Building owned by Thomas Perkins.

Salem Common
The Salem Common with Nathaniel Silsbee House in the distance.

Perkins had paid Charles Bulfinch to build the Bunker Hill Monument, Mass General Hospital, Perkins School for the Blind, and India Wharf. Bulfinch was the one who designed the homes connected to the tunnels in Salem and Boston and the idea of hiding tunnel dirt in rivers, ponds, and marshland. Bulfinch would be the one who built all of the tunnels in Washington D.C. Perkins is the drug dealer who started the Forbes family off to fortune by selling opium to China. His empire was sold to Sturgis Russell who’s cousin founded Skull & Bones. William Russell will purchase property off Perkins in New Haven, Conn. to build the crypt on.

Archer Building that sat previous on this location the Hawthorne Hoptel is on now.
The Franklin Building once stood on the lot the Hawthorne Hotel occupies now. In the closest corner of the building the Parker Brothers had their first toy store.

Also the window seat looks out upon the parking lot which at one time was the location of the Bently-Crowninshield House featured in H.P. Lovecraft’s Thing on the Doorstep. The story details Daniel Upton’s account of the tragedy that befell Edward Derby. Edward Derby marries a woman who becomes possessed by her dead evil father who in time possess Derby’s body after he was pushed into his wife’s body when he was in Arkham Asylum.  Left for dead the wife’s body limps to Upton’s doorstep informing him that it was in fact Derby who inhabits his wife’s decaying body as he becomes the thing on the doorstep. Arkham Asylum is the same asylum that the Batman universe uses. The Bently-Crowninshield  House has since been removed to in front of the Hawthorne.

The Bently-Crowninshield House now on Washington Square and Essex Street. The home featured in the “Thing on the Doorstep.”

Now the window behind you over looks the holy parking lot. Once the location of a Jewish temple. So if you are ever chased by any of Salem’s vampires. A variety called psychic vampires. The type of person who can speak at you for an hour and drain your soul and time away. If you are ever confronted in Salem, MA, it is good to know where the consecrated land is…

The Jewish Temple now in the auxiliary parking lot for the Hawthorne Hotel. You can also see the Bently-Crowninshield House to the left in its original position when Lovecraft wrote the story.

Below are images of Benjamin Crowninshield, Thomas Perkins, Jolie Tea Building, Merchant Bank notes, and the tunnels….

The Brown Building Which houses Jolie Tea.
Benjamin Crowninshield
Merchant Bank Notes
Sealed tunnel under Jolie Tea. Notice the furnace drawing air from beyond the sealed entrance from the tunnel.
Opium Dealer Thomas H. Perkins. Went from slave trader to opium dealer.
Skull & Bones crypt built on Thomas Perkins old lot.

So head over to Jolie Tea and experience some history from your window seat over one of the 200+ teas they offer. They also sell Howqua Tea named after the man that Perkins made the wealthiest man in the world by selling his opium to. Your welcome to read a store copy of Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City or its sequel Sub Rosa while at Jolie or buy a copy to bring home with you! They are both filled with the story of the tunnels in Salem and how her smugglers’ shaped American history…

 

Derby Square and the Tunnels of Salem MA

Home of the Engineer and Playboy

Derby Mansion Derby Square Salem MA

Old Town Hall

32 Derby Square

This was the site of Col. William Browne who was a loyalist during the Revolutionary War who fled to Canada. In consequence the state of Massachusetts confiscated his property in 1784. Through Derby’s wife he inherited Brown’s property including Castle Hill which Hawthorne called Brown’s Folly. Castle Hill will be torn down by the Massachusetts Rock and Stone Company. This mansion was designed by Charles Bulfinch and later modified by Samuel McIntire. Charles Bulfinch built the Capital Building in Washington D.C. , the Essex Bank Building in Salem, and the tunnels entrances that connect them. In between the years 1795 and 1799 the mansion was under construction. Soon after the construction was over Elias Hasket Derby dies.

Elias_Hasket_Derby_Jr_2

After returning from sea, Elias Hasket Derby Jr. inherits the mansion and retires into it for 10 years. Did Elias Hasket Derby Jr. build the tunnels leading from the mansion or were they already there? If they preexisted his return to Salem, did these tunnels inspire him to connect other buildings in town? Either way he will spend the next 10 years filling in the Commons and building an extensive network of tunnels to the old colonial system.

At the end of his ten years with his finances faltering, Elias Hasket Derby Jr. returns to the sea and comes back with a 1,000 Merino sheep. Soon afterwards he moves to Londonberry, N.H. and sells the estate to John Derby III and Benjamin Pickman. The house had been left abandoned for years because of the high cost of sustaining it. Elias Hasket Derby Jr. has the mansion demolished before he sells it.

Old_Town_Hall_Right_Side

In 1816 John Derby III and Benjamin Pickman Jr. offer the foundation of the house to the town to have a market place and town hall on the property forever. The town accepts and they have Joshua Upham build Old Town Hall from plans drawn by Charles Bulfinch. Also brick stalls were added to the walkway leading to New Derby Street. These would be demolished at some point and rebuilt in the 1970’s which today houses Artist Row. The opening of Old Town Hall was graced with the appearance of James Monroe as he visited Salem. This will be one of many buildings Monroe would visit that was connected by the tunnels in town. Old Town Hall served as the city seat till 1836 when the new city hall was built.

Now when you sit in the men’s room as the train goes through the tunnel on Washington Street, 2 buildings away, you can feel the wind come through a vent in the back of the stall along with the sound of the wheels running on the track. The back wall of the men’s room is in the middle of the building. Access to the front of the basement towards Essex Street is prohibitive. As well as the back corner of the basement facing Lawrence Place. There are several manholes surrounding the property reading “S’, “Sewer”, and “Drain”. Staff on the city electrical building say it is connected to the current Bank Plaza Building and Daniel Low’s old Warehouse which used to house the Goddess Treasure Chest now.

In 1816 John Derby and Benjamin Pickman Jr. also built the Pickman Building at 22-26 Front Street and 15 Derby Square. 15 Derby Square houses Maria’ Sweet Something and the former location of Fiddelhead. The building in which Front Street Coffeehouse and the needlework shop is in was a later addition. The next row of buildings attached to these two were original along with a third building which stood where the air conditioning unit stands behind the fence.

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Get the book everyone digs before its sequel comes out!
Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City!
Available at Barnes & Noble, Remember Salem, and Wicked Good Books in Salem on Essex Street. Also on Amazon.com!

William Parker House and How to Raise Money For a Famous Game Company

Monopoly Built by Smuggling

Parker Brothers' House Salem MA

William B. Parker House

33 Pleasant Street

William B. Parker built his home kitty corner of Parker Court in 1851. Parker Court has a tunnel running from Winter street to the Isaac Smith House on the corner of Pleasant and Bridge Streets. William Parker also owned large tracts of land on March Street and lots composing of Beacon (East Watson Street then) and Barton Streets. He will own the Hawkes House for a short period too. The E.W. Abbot House which will be described next was once his property as well which is connected to the tunnels.

William Parker was the father of the Parker Brothers, George and Charles, who started the toy company in the Franklin Building. William had owned ships with Joseph Jr. White, John Andrews, and Benjamin Felt. He also was brought into a libel case in 1830 accusing Col. Upham as a Federalist smuggler during the Embargo Act (Report of Timothy Upham vs. Hill and Barton of New Hampshire Patriot and State Gazette). Hill and Barton also accused Upham of being a corrupt Collector of Customs in Portsmouth. The whole time Upham declared himself as much a Democratic-Republican as Crowninshield was. Remember the tunnels under George Crowninshield Sr. house which became the Customs House in Salem…

When I first searched this basement in the first version of this book the deceased owner’s son had the basement filled with large furniture after his mother’s death. Then I returned during his estate sale and the basement was cleared out. Then I found the tunnel entrance had led under the granite stairs in the front of the house. This sealed entrance also had the usual raised cold sill. Later I heard a utility worker who was in front of the house he had seen the original iron door that sealed the tunnel. So it makes you wonder where the fortune started from that set up the Parker Brothers toy company?

Clue Monopoly Parker Brothers Smuggling Tunnel Salem Ma

Get the book everyone digs before its sequel comes out!
Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City!
Available at Barnes & Noble, Remember Salem, and Wicked Good Books in Salem on Essex Street. Also on Amazon.com!

Cook-Kimball House on Pleasant Street: Tunnels and Bomb Shelters in Salem MA

Bomb Shelter

Cook-Kimball House Salem MA with Tunnels

Cook-Kimball House

14 Pickman Street

Built circa. 1807-1808 for Robert Cook Jr. who was a local painter. His father Robert Cook married Elizabeth Liscomb. He was a fisherman & mariner. They had 6 children; Elizabeth, Robert Jr., Benjamin, John Morong, and Martha. He married Hannah Gowan in 1800. Robert Cook Junior’s son John Morang Cook was also a painter. Robert Cook Jr. has the wooden house to the right also built in 1813. Samuel Field McIntire builds both of them. The first home remained in the hands of Robert’s heirs till 1839 when Captain James S. Kimball bought it.

In the basement they converted a section of the tunnel into a bomb shelter and the tunnel leaving the original structure under the addition is now flooded. Also the Mack Industrial School for Girls and the David Lord House next door are made out of brick. This brick would be needed to fork the tunnel up Collins Street to Barton Street where the tunnels continue through the backyards on the old Captain William B. Parker lots.

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 2

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 3

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 5

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 6

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 7

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 8

Cook Kimball House Tunnel 34

Cook Kimball House Tunnel Fish Bowl 2

Cook Kimball House Tunnel Fish Bowl

Cook Kimball House Tunnel

 

Get the book everyone digs before its sequel comes out!
Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City!
Available at Barnes & Noble, Remember Salem, and Wicked Good Books in Salem on Essex Street. Also on Amazon.com!

Superior Court Associate Justice Joseph Story in Salem MA

Salem Judge Defends the Second Bank of the United States

 Joseph Story House Salem MA

Joseph Story House

26 Winter Street

This house was built in 1811 for Joseph Story. His sisters married the White brothers. The year in which Elias Hasket Derby Jr. begins his plan to build a new series of tunnels in town, Joseph Story in 1801 was admitted to the bar in Salem. At the time he was the only Jeffersonian Democratic- Republican in Essex County to be admitted. He would rise to be the head of the bar in Essex County. Because of his alignment with Jefferson the firm George Crowninshield & Sons Co. had retained him. In 1805 he was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives alongside his brother-in-law Stephen White. This year his wife Mary F.L. Oliver and his father would die. Joseph Story made a power move when in April 1807 Congressman Jacob Crowninshield spat up blood while speaking in Congress and soon died. Story was the Crowninshield family lawyer. Benjamin Crowninshield was tapped to replace his brother but Story took his seat in 1808 with the help of the White brothers and his new marriage to Judge William Wetmore’s daughter Sarah Waldo Wetmore. She would give him 7 children. Story now felt that his power in Washington and the White’s power in Salem could dethrone the Crowninshields that he had worked for. Story lobbied for Jefferson’s downfall after the Embargo Act and became the Federalist favorite Democratic-Republican. He only sat in Congress for a year. Now power in Salem was truly now in the hands of the White family and Story’s. They would start the Friday Evening Club which brought together 10 members who were friends and family to discuss affairs of banks, insurance companies, and the local Democratic-Republican Party. In 1811 Story became the Speaker in the Massachusetts House of Representative.

Joseph Story Statue

In 1811 Joseph Story, who was head of the Essex Bar in Massachusetts, was appointed to the Supreme Court at 32. He is still the youngest to ever be appointed. His main course in the Supreme Court was to protect the property rights of the minority of the rich man in the country. He was a hero of Alexander Hamilton’s and John Marshall’s conservative Republicanism. In his life he wrote many books concerning his opinion on the Constitution.  It has been said that Joseph Story was more influential on how we perceive the Constitution today than even Judge Marshal. After the War of 1812 Stephen White and Judge Story pushed forward for Salem to install new sidewalk curbs, plant trees, pave roads, and create schools. In 1819 he led the pursuit to denounce the slave trade. In 1841 he presided over the case of the escaped slaves who mutinied on the Amistad. He also was a Whig in the 1820’ and 1830’s. He fought against Jacksonian Democrats as a conservative Republican.  He was a staunch supporter of the Second Bank of the United States in which he was a director of in Philadelphia and Boston. This was the main reason he would be against Jackson who would veto the charter of the Second Bank of the United States in 1836. In many cases in the Supreme Court Story would rule in favor of the bank. His associate in the Supreme Court Daniel Webster was also a director of the Boston Branch of the Second Bank of the United States. Daniel Webster was also tied to Stephen White though the marriage of his brother-in-law to Stephen White’s daughter and his son’s marriage to the other daughter.  Stephen White was the man behind the curtain who controlled Story and Webster and their role in the election of William Harrison and his future murder. In 1829 Story moved to Cambridge to become Harvard’s first Dane Professor of Law.

In 1830 the uncle of his brother-in-laws was murdered. He would accuse his brother-in-law Stephen White of murder. Two blackmail letters came to Salem, the first accusing Stephen White which Story believed. The second only appeared afterward.

Joseph White Murder Salem MA

Captain Joseph White who was on his death bed for months before the murder was bludgeoned and then stabbed 13 times. The blow by the club killed him. The first autopsy attested to this.  Then someone came back to stab him with two different daggers for a total of 13 stab wounds to make the murder more ghastly and shocking. None of which produced any blood splatters or stains on the walls or sheets for Captain White would of been dead for some time by then. Joseph White had heavily invested in the Second Bank of the United States in which Stephen White now inherited.

Judge Isaac Parker Salem MA

After the mysterious death of the high Federalist Isaac Parker who had said 3 days before he died that he never missed a day at the bench in all of his years and he never felt better, Daniel Webster propositioned Story to be the head of  Massachusetts Superior Court to hear the murder. Since the murder was a capital offense the Superior Court Justice was to hear the case.  Daniel Webster was hoping this would become Story. Story refused to give up his position in Washington.

In 1845 Joseph Story dies in Cambridge.

I have not been in these tunnels of yet.  Since I have seen that both of the White brother’s house and Stephen White’s other brother-in-law Stephen Foster were connected I would conclude their brother-in-law and partner’s home would be connected as well. But, I have one friend who grew up in this home and several others who had played with him tell me how they ran through the tunnel that leads from this house.

Also Story’s neighbor Richard Gardener’s (17 Winter Street on the corner of Pickman Street) brother John had built the home that Captain White was murdered in. The Gardener brothers were Commons Improvement subscribers too..

Get the book everyone digs before its sequel comes out!
Salem Secret Underground:The History of the Tunnels in the City!
Available at Barnes & Noble, Remember Salem, and Wicked Good Books in Salem on Essex Street. Also on Amazon.com!

Why Our World Would End If Political Corruption Was not Around

Image Would That Be a Bad Thing?

As we know in Salem, politics and corruption made our seaport the richest in the nation. This advancement did not come legally. Otherwise there would be no need to dig 3 miles of tunnels. This was the foundation of our government. George Washington slept in the Joshua Ward House and might of walked to his birthday party through a tunnel to the Mechanic Hall. He might of even praised the Salem local businessmen for their ingenuity for avoiding paying duties or taxes to the British. 

Now John Quincy Adams also walked through these tunnels for years before he was president. Did he do anything while sworn in to stop these gentlemen from paying their share of the infrastructure they relied on more than anyone else? Did they pay one cent for the roads that were built to move their cargo into the interior of the nation?

What about James Monroe when he toured Salem? His Secretary of the Navy Benjamin Crowninshield  put him up in his house and traveled through the tunnels to be entertained in the homes of Senator Nathaniel Silsbee and the founder’s of J.P. Morgan & Chase, George Peabody, home. No!

Then on the local level, all the mayors were part of the smuggling including Silsbee’s son. The head of Customs, Joseph Hiller, was part of it too along with the weigher and gauger and the captain in charge of the revenue cutter. Benjamin Crowninshield was also the Customs Agent for Marblehead.

On the state level Joseph Story and Stephen White were in the state congress along with many of the other smugglers in town.  The members of the Salem Commons Improvement Fund were entrenched in all levels of government.

So I ask, if our world ended would it be a bad thing?

The universe hates vacuums. Once our world ends, another would just take its place.  If corruption, greed, and secrecy was so integral to our world; would you want to remain living in it if a better world was offered to you? No, so lets stop. Let them thrive and strive as we leave to somewhere better. The good news is, you do not have to leave your town to do it. Its a state of mind. The old world tips their hand with every dollar they spend to convince you to act in such a way that profits them. If we were not so powerful, they would not spend a dime to influence how we thought. They would just force us to do it. In that statement lies the true strength in the people. So let the world fall.