Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Have I got a 3 Decker for you

Nope not sandwich, but places to live. Now that the Grand Tour season is over and riding will become somewhat lessened, I heat out in the MINI for another passion of mine. Still a treasure hunt, but one that has no official end. When I get done, it is done. Waymarking is the name of this game. Go find someplace for one of the 1080 categories, take some pictures, write something and post at Waymarking.com.

Today hitting Worcester for places on the National Register of Historic Places. Concentrating my efforts on the Vernon Hill area.

Vernon Hill

Part of the fun is researching why places are on the register. Some of the reasons could be the person (like George Washington), the architect (Frank Llyod Wright), style, or an event. For the most part Vernon Hill was primarily event driven from the standpoint of the development of the area and the folks moving into the area. Vernon Hill area is the east of downtown Worcester. The Irish began settling the area in the 1820's to build the Blackstone Canal. By the 1890's the area was attracting Lithuanians, Poles, Swedes, Russian Jews and French Canadians because of the wire steel mills located not to far away. When the electric railway systems ran on Millbury St, the area exploded with the 3 decker properties. Folks were able to live further away from work because of the easy transportation. Automobiles replaced the street cars in the 1930's and the Great Depression halted further development in the area. The mills began to shut down over the next 20 to 25 years until the last one closed in the 70's. So that's the story of Vernon Hill, at least my take.

I probably hit 40 to 50 places this past weekend, mostly 3 Deckers. I figured once you have seen one you have seen one too many. In many respects this is true, but as I drove thru the various sub neighborhoods one could see subtle changes to the make up and the design of the houses. Many of them have had the front porches and balconies removed and siding has been replaced with aluminum or vinyl, and satellite dishes mounted to the sides. What surprised me is how clean the areas were. The folks, and they are diverse, do take some kind of pride where they live.

On thing for sure, I wouldn't want to live here in the winter. This place is steep, not a lot of parking at the properties, so they have to park on the street. Snow plowing has gotta be a bitch and getting up some of these hills, the same.

Here's a few spattering of the Deckers and other places.

First Decker of the Day

Hunt, David, Three-Decker - Worcester MA

Upsala Street School - Built 1894

Upsala Street School - Worcester MA

View of Euclid Montrose Historic District

Euclid Avenue--Montrose Street Historic District - Worcester MA

Euclid Avenue--Montrose Street Historic District - Worcester MA

View Street Historic District

View Street Historic District - Worcester MA

View Street Historic District - Worcester MA

Perry Avenue Historic District

Perry Avenue Historic District - Worcester MA

Patrick McGuiness Three Decker - Built in 1908 - a wee bit different than all of the rest.

McGuinness, Patrick, Three-Decker - Worcester MA

Providence St Firehouse - Built in 1899

Providence Street Firehouse

Providence St Historic District

Providence Street Historic District - Worcester MA

Providence Street Historic District - Worcester MA

Woodford Street Historic District

Woodford Street Historic District - Worcester MA

Ward Street School - Built 1898

Ward Street School-Millbury Street - Worcester MA

Crompton Loom Works - its original portion dating to 1860, the complex is one of the oldest surviving industrial sites in the city. The facility was established by George Crompton, whose father William had invented the first power loom for weaving fancy fabrics



What I expected most of the 3 Deckers to look like. These were far and few between. The McPartland Three Decker was built in 1888.


Classic example - Vincent Kantratowicz, a wire worker owned this 3 decker. It was built in 1930


Another nice one


Look down Dorchester St


See them all CLICK HERE

Monday, October 27, 2014

Lucky 7 - Double Down Tour Results

After traveling to 273 towns for a total of 290 points I finished 7th in the GLMC Double Down Tour. Somewhere I lost 4 points, but it did not effect my placing. Another week of traveling I suppose I could have moved a couple of notches. There is always next season.

Cudo's to the Edkins, who I believe I had met during the 2008 Minuteman 100

2014 GLMC Results

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Finishing Touches

Sunday and Monday I put the finishing touches on 2 Grand Tours. The first one was Team Strange's Anniversary Tour, involving spelling TEAM STRANGE AIRHEADS 30 with town enter signs or post offices using the first letter of the town. There was an alternate method spelling the phrase in the least mount of towns such as using TEAneck NJ for the first 3 letters of TEAM. I grabbed the last town for that method in IRA, VT and was getting ready to post my results, deciding to reread the rules. There would be only 1 winner with this method and all others that submitted this way would get zilch so I opted to fill in the missing letters.

Needed 2 E's and 1 A, Sunday grabbed Attleboro, East Greenwich and Exeter.

12 Attleboro MA DSC_3508_09_10Enhancer ES

16 Exeter RI DSC_3541_2_3Enhancer ES

For this one I had to ride down the sidewalk and park right in front of the door. One person said I looked I was all prepared for Ebola, because of my one piece riding suit. I smiled. Others just gave me this kinda of look that my bike did not belong where it was.

11 East Greenwich RI DSC_3532_3_4Enhancer ES

Slideshow of all 20 towns and routes (route 30) CLICK HERE

The President Tour sounded easy in the beginning of the season. Grab towns and/or counties that are named for Presidents, earn 1 point. Get the birth places find evidence of such get 4 points, limited to 5. Big Bonus locations (10 Points), the closest location for me was Washington DC and the Washington Monument. 30 points for a picture of you, your bike and any living current or ex US President. For both of these tours, you had to score at least 25 points to finish.

Finishing this tour up I grabbed Lincoln RI on Sunday and headed into the Boston area for John F Kennedy's birthplace in Brookline and George H Bush in Milton.

Birthplace  John F Kennedy DSC_3550_1_2Enhancer ES

Birthplace George H Bush DSC_3565_6_7Enhancer ES

Lincoln DSC_3520_1_2Enhancer ES

CLICK THIS for the places I grabbed for this tour. Less than 20 pictures.

Sent both in on Monday night. I don't have a clue how many folks are competing in these. The Double Down tour has at least 100 participants and results will be announced October 25th or so.

What do I get for these, entry into some prize pools, a pin, a T-Shirt and some great roads getting there.