At our October public meeting, we voted to find the Queen Anne home at 202 Middlesex Avenue “historically significant” based on the architectural descriptions and family research in the Form B, shared in our previous post.
We will be reviewing 3 applications for demolition – at 120 Jerome St, at 116 Dover St and 15 Hadley Place – and determining historical significance for a large Queen Anne home in the Wellington area, at 202 Middlesex Avenue.
If you follow us on Facebook, you’ll have seen my recent post about Elinor, a young woman who lived in Medford in the 1930s and kept a diary. That diary has been found by a young woman living in the Boston area NOW and she publishes Elinor’s entries on Instagram – along with photos and a little background research about the names and places mentioned in the diary.
It looks like Elinor may well have spent the summer of 1933 at 202 Middlesex Avenue! In that summer, Elinor lived with a family she calls “Uncle Roy” and “Aunt Shirley,” or “The Robbinses” and she describes many of their local outings and adventures, including an evening “running walk” around the Fellsway and Wellington Road. Furthermore, according to our surveyors’ Form B on 202 Middlesex Ave,
“Henry Lyman Cornell (1852-1935) was a music teacher and vocal musician of opera. Little could be ascertained about his career through readily available records, but several brief newspaper accounts suggest he was actively performing in Boston as a basso during the 1880s. In 1900 the household, identified as 202 Middlesex Avenue, included his wife, Harriet Sophia (Withington, 1849-1940), whom he married in 1874, three sons, and three daughters born between 1879 and 1899. In 1930[…] the household included his daughter, Shirley (b. 1880) and her husband Leroy H. Robbins (b. 1880), a real estate broker.”
The Medford Historical Commission has received an application for the partial demolition of the Queen Anne Victorian house located at 202 Middlesex Avenue. Located in the Wellington neighborhood, the building is a large and ambitious example of the types of buildings erected during the earliest development. Large lots were laid out for white collar commuting individuals but the proximity to the Boston and Maine Railroad enticed the working classes to round out the neighborhood. Constructed largely between 1880 and 1920, the Wellington area contains some of the finest examples of single family residences anywhere in the City. In addition, the house has an excellent social history which roots the occupants firmly to the fabric of the area. We will review the building for significance.