Plimpton Press Demolition August 20, 2018

The main tower of the Plimpton Press came down today. It stood for over 120 years, and could be seen as far away as Morse Hill in South Norwood (site of the current Coakley Middle School).

 

To see my full post on the Plimpton Press demolition, click here.

And for the history of the Plimpton Press, check this out.

 

Plimpton Press Demolition August 15, 2018

Today the Southeast corner and East side were opened up and more of the inside of this great old building are seeing some daylight. I got a closeup photo of some of the old lumber, which is being saved and re-purposed according to this great article from the Norwood Bulletin.

 

To see my full post on the Plimpton Press demolition, click here.

And for the history of the Plimpton Press, check this out.

Plimpton Press Demolition August 13, 2018

After months of work, the time has finally come to begin work on demolishing the main building of the old Plimpton Press. Guild street is closed from Lenox to Broadway 8 am- 4:30pm for the two week period beginning August 13 to allow work on the building to continue safely.

 

I shot this video around 5pm tonight from the intersection of Lenox, Guild and Plimpton streets. Work seems to be moving right along despite the gloomy weather.

To see my full post on the Plimpton Press demolition, click here.

And for the history of the Plimpton Press, check this out.

Norwood’s First WWI Casualty

Private Bert B. Windhal was Norwood’s first WWI casualty, one hundred years ago today.

Killed in a battle in France on August 10, 1918, he was a member of Company “I”, 28th US Army Infantry.

He was laid to rest in Plot C Row 23 Grave 27, in the Oise-Aisne American Cemetery and Memorial in Fere-en-Tardenois, Departement de l’Aisne, Picardie.

His name is recorded with the other Fallen Heroes of Norwood on a plaque in the Norwood Municipal Building.

Thank you for your sacrifice, Pvt. Windahl, we will not forget you.

 

 

1903 July Fourth Parade

My great grandfather, Norwood resident Edgar Webber, took these photos of the Native American “Red Men” marching in the Norwood 4th of July Parade.

The first photo is near the intersection of Winter street and Norwood Central Station. The rear of Norwood Hospital cuts off Winter street in this area today.

He apparently let one of them use his horse, and marked it near center right of the photo below.

Building 19

Building 19 was a chain of unique warehouse style New England discount stores that offered “good stuff cheap” for over 50 years before being forced into bankruptcy in 2013.

The store sold a wide variety of items obtained in fire sales, closeouts, bankruptcies, overstocks and customs seizures. They also sold items with small defects, “seconds” at large discounts.

The first store opened in 1965 in the Hingham Shipyard, where the warehouse buildings were numbered. Too cheap to replace the “Building 19” sign, owner Jerry Ellis instead used the building number as the business name and it stuck.

After opening a second store, Building 19 1/2 in Burlington, Ellis opened the Norwood store located in a 65,000 square foot building at 1450 Providence Highway and designated it Building 19 3/4.

Ellis used humor in signs inside the store as well as in sale circulars. The circulars had a comic book quality to them thanks to the artwork of Scituate cartoonist Mat Brown.

 

Signs both in and outside the store poked fun at the company, their products and sometimes even the customers.

Ellis proudly called Building 19 “America’s Laziest and Messiest Department Store.”

Part of the stores appeal was that you never knew what new thing you’d find on the shelves.

 

For husbands who were impatiently waiting for their wives, there was the “official husbands bench”.

The company gave away free coffee in cups that warned customers not to make fun of the taste because “someday you’ll be old and weak yourself!”.

WalMart, Target and other big retailers as well as online shopping led to a decline in sales and after a decade of struggling, the company closed all the Building 19 stores in 2013.

In 2014, the Norwood and the Burlington stores were the final two locations to close after a short period of time as rug wholesalers.

The Norwood location was purchased in 2016 by GRE Norwood LLC and turned into Extra Space Storage.

Owner Jerry Ellis died on November 11, 2017. His daughter has written a paperback all about him and the company called Good Stuff Cheap!: The Story of Jerry Ellis and Building #19, Inc”.

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