1861 - Hiram Farnum & Wm Street leased 10 acres on the summit of Mt. Nonotuck, they built a 22 x 26' Hotel, the first two years of the lease were free, then $50.00 a month. 1861 July 4 - Opened & dedicated Eyrie House (Eagles Nest). Room & Board $1.00/day or $5.00 a week. 1861 August - Mr. Farum takes leave of the operation. Mr. Street becomes sole owner of Eyrie House.
1863 June 23 - Holyoke Cornet Band entertains a crowd of 200. Many similar concerts all year. 1864 May 23 - Hotel and grounds well received. Large crowds daily. 1866 June 2 - New Menagerie along summit paths enjoyed by all.
1868 June 16 - Average of 50 patrons a day enjoy the Hotels hospitality and fare. 1870 May 31 - Picnic Grove crowded to capacity. 125 people most days. 1872 June - Many Patrons return yearly for a week or two of pure mountain air
1875 May - First talk of inclined Railway to summit. Survey underway. 1876 June 3 - Steam Pump used to pump water up mountain to Hotel. 1877 June 30 - Construction started on Pavilion & Stable. Pavilion to hold 400 guests.
1878 June 1 - Enlargement of Hotel complete, now 40 x 49', more than 25 guest rooms. 1880 June 1 - Failure of Roller Skating in pavilion due to poor quality skates. 1881 June 1 - Another enlargement of Hotel, now 40 x 60'. 30 plus guest rooms.
1882 June 1 - Dining room seats 80, full menu 50 cents. Board now $8.00 per week. 1883 June 1 - All Promenades complete. Wires were strung and a telephone installed. 1885 May 30 - New Carriage Road to summit completed. Telephone removed (Too costly).
1887 May 30 - Many new animals added to Menagerie. Bear, Monkey & Alligator, etc. 1889 May 25 - Hotel & Grounds still enjoying large crowds. Clam bakes a real hit. 1891 June 6 - Enlarge patron Stable, now holds 40 horses. Windmill now pumping water to summit.
1893 May - Work on the new Hotel and inclined Railway begins (Now the rock ruins we have today). 1895 June 5 - Business fair, work on the new inclined Railway to Mt. Tom Junction continuing. 1897 - Business starting to drop off. New Mountain House on Mt. Tom the new public attraction.
1899 - Only annual Patrons and Picnics kept the Eyrie House going. 1901 Apr. 13 - Hotel, Pavilion & Stable burn to the ground, all is lost. Caused by negligence in cremation of several horses which had recently died.
1904 - The Mt. Tom Reservation Commissioners offered Mr. Street $5,000 for his property. Mr. Street wanted $25,000. Neither side would budge, so the Commissioners issued their check and took the property by eminent domain. Mr. Street never accepted the settlement, so the money was deposited in a bank in Mr. Street's name, where it remained till his death in 1918 at age 78. Over the years, Mr. Street made 23 land purchases and accumulated approx. 100 acres of land near Mt. Nonotuck summit. -- Text from sign on path leading to Eyrie House. Photos by PCJ staffer Bob Genest
Paramount aka Hippodrome nee Paramount
Having recently joined the Quaboag Hills Photography Club I was privy to a
photowalk they arranged at the old Paramount Theater, or Hippodrome as it
4 years ago
Off The Shelf: The Finest Hours by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman
From Booklist: In a 1952 nor’easter, the distress of two ships off Cape Cod initiated a dramatic Coast Guard operation recounted here by coauthors Tougias and Sherman. Both vessels were World War II surplus, cheaply built, unwisely kept in service, and broken in two by the storm. All four halves floated, for the moment, and the authors’ narrative accordingly tracks four separate search-and-rescue efforts that form the complete story. The most prominent, in the press at the time and in official honors conferred afterward, concerned one motorized lifeboat, a puny 36 feet long and manned by four men, dispatched to do battle with the maelstrom’s towering waves. This is the seascape of The Perfect Storm, and the authors do justice to the peril in a tight account of the action. Plotting the course of CG36500, the utilitarian name of the lifeboat captained by Bernie Webber (interviewed for this book), Tougias and Sherman reach their peak of tension in the sink-or-swim moments when mariners abandoned ship and chanced their lives on their rescuers’ skill and bravery. An excellent entry in the disaster-at-sea genre. --Gilbert Taylor
Our focus is on Western Massachusetts. Our postings are mostly of common images that folks might come across in their everyday journeys. Wall graffiti, lampposts, ticket booths, street scenes, wildlife, forests and discarded objects are regular themes.
We started blogging with a focus on the history of our families and how the places they have lived evolved over time. We are most interested in how the past and present collide and launching the reader into a place where memories of prior experiences and places mingle with their everyday lives.
-- Bob Genest