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Title
Description
Date

Corner of Boston Common public park with John Hancock and Prudential towers in the background. Source refers to date as: before August 1985.

1985

Looking down Arlington Street towards Ritz Carlton (now the Taj Hotel). Source refers to date as: before August 1985.

1985

A dozen or so people running toward the footbridge to the esplanade, with handwritten numbers on paper taped to their backs. Location pictured: the wide sidewalk between David G. Mugar Way and 95 Beacon Street in Boston's Back Bay. Same location as finish line.

1986-10-21

Exterior view of the brownstone Ames Mansion. On the left, we see people on the sidewalk and a Coca Cola truck on the street. Unidentified woman in lower left corner of photo may be Carol Ann Small, secretary in the Alumni Office. Emerson College occupied this property between 1984 and 1995. The Oliver Ames Mansion at 355 Comm. Ave. was designed by architect Carl Fehmer and built in 1882-1883 for Oliver Ames and his wife Anna Coffin Ames. It was the first of the Boston chateaux, large houses inspired by 16th century chateaux of the Loire Valley. Oliver Ames, an investor in railroads, banks and manufacturing companies, would become Governor of Massachusetts in 1886-1887 while living at this address. The building remained in the Ames family until 1926 when it was purchased and converted into a showroom for the National Casket Company. It was later used for office and retail space.

1986-10

Male runner wearing Emerson College t-shirt crosses the finish line tape with his hands raised. Finish line is on the wide sidewalk between David G. Mugar Way and 95 Beacon Street in Boston's Back Bay. In the background someone walks down the ramp from the Arthur Fiedler Footbridge which leads to the esplanade.

1986-10-21

A female student dressed in white reads a book outside of 130 Beacon Street, Boston, a spot known to Emersonians as "The Wall."

1986-09

Students sit on the stoop on or near 130 Beacon Street, Boston, a spot known to Emersonians as "The Wall." In foreground, male student wearing sunglasses appears to be tying his shoes.

1986-09

A female student reads a book on the stoop of (or near) 130 Beacon Street, Boston, a spot known to Emersonians as "The Wall."

1986-09

Photo of the buildings with people on the sidewalk and a car on the street. In 1964, the College purchased 132-134 Beacon Street for use as a dormitory.

1967

Front facade of building circa 1963 with neoclassical architectural elements. A Volkswagen beetle is parked on the street. Originally built as a home in 1904-1905, this structure at 150 Beacon Street replaced a house that was the residence of Boston arts benefactor, Isabella Stewart Gardner. 150 Beacon was designed by architect Alexander W. Longfellow, Jr., the nephew of the famous poet. In April 1961, Emerson College purchased 150 Beacon Street and converted it into dormitory and dining hall with a library on the upper floor. The college sold 150 Beacon in 1976.

1963 circa

Exterior view of the brownstone Ames Mansion. Emerson College occupied this property between 1984 and 1995. The Oliver Ames Mansion at 355 Comm. Ave. was designed by architect Carl Fehmer and built in 1882-1883 for Oliver Ames and his wife Anna Coffin Ames. It was the first of the Boston chateaux, large houses inspired by 16th century chateaux of the Loire Valley. Oliver Ames, an investor in railroads, banks and manufacturing companies, would become Governor of Massachusetts in 1886-1887 while living at this address. The building remained in the Ames family until 1926 when it was purchased and converted into a showroom for the National Casket Company. It was later used for office and retail space.

1986

Exterior front view of the building. A sign above the entry reads “Hotel Ericson.” Two small barren trees on the sidewalk frame the building. The flagpole is empty. The front end of an automobile is visible, parked on the street. In 1927, Emerson College of Oratory purchased its first piece of real estate at 373 Commonwealth Ave. It would be known as Emerson College Residence. For Emerson students, the new address replaced five rented dormitory buildings. The six-story stone and brick building stood directly across the street from the Harvard Club. It would remain a dormitory building for Emerson women from 1928 through 1960. Info source: Century of Eloquence ; BAC Catalogue; Gillach Group; BackBayHouses.org.

1928

Student on the front steps of 130 Beacon. Property signage displays the new name, "Emerson College, established 1880," as well as directional signage pointing the way to "FM station WERS" and "Drama workshop in rear." Originally built as private residences, 130 Beacon was part of a group of Back Bay buildings held by Emerson College. The college purchased 130 Beacon in 1933 to house administrative offices and classrooms. It became the flagship building of Emerson's Back Bay campus and over the years would also served as the base for The Emerson Review, The Berkeley Beacon and EIV, as well as the college library and a television studio. President Ross created the college's first theater in the Carriage House, located behind 128 and 130 Beacon. In 1939, the name of the institution was shortened from Emerson College of Oratory to Emerson College to coincide with expanded course offerings. 130 Beacon was a popular student hangout known as the Wall. Upon learning that Emerson was selling all of the college’s west side properties and relocating to complete the vision of the "Campus on the Common," Emerson students, staff, and faculty lamented the loss of the Beacon Street buildings for their character which lent itself to a unique sense of community. "I guess if you ask anyone from Emerson from the Beacon Street era, they would say The Wall was one of the best things about Emerson. It was like our Facebook. Behind The Wall was a huge sheet stretched between posts. All the events and news were posted daily. It was the central gathering point for campus life." - Barbara Ruthberg, BS '68. Info sources: Berkeley Beacon (10/19/2005); Emerson.edu webpages: Past-presidents, Editorial style guide, Memories of the Library; online video: "Pete Chvany reminisces at the wall.”.

1950 - 1959

Architect's rendering of the 2-story Chickering Hall building with the caption, Our New Home. The first floor is defined by a series of five arches. The drawing includes a horse-drawn carriage on the street. In 1901, the College moved to Chickering Hall, 239 Huntington Ave, where it would stay for only ten years. The Emerson community welcomed the move to this Back Bay location near Symphony Hall. The decision to relocate from the College’s previous address was due in large part to safety concerns. Emerson’s Odd Fellows Hall in the South End was troubled with high rates of crime. From A Century of Eloquence: “The college rented the entire second floor of Chickering Hall which provided nine spacious, well lighted and ventilated classrooms, two of which were small lecture halls (40x22ft), each complete with a platform. After 1903, a portrait of Dr. Emerson, presented by the graduating class of that year, hung in the corridor. Six marble stairways with wrought-iron balustrades led to the second floor. The first floor held the library and the school’s administrative offices, and morning lectures were held in the “superb hall on the first floor, which seated 800.” During this period, Boston caterer D. M. Shooshan’s Ladies and Gent’s Cafe also occupied space on the first floor of Chickering Hall at the address 241-243. An ad in the Emerson College Magazine [Vol. 19] described it as a “First-class restaurant, also a choice line of confectionery. Ice cream and fancy baking of all kinds.” Chickering Hall was owned by piano manufacturing company, Chickering & Sons. It was designed by architectural firm Peabody & Stearns for use as an 800-seat concert venue. After Emerson’s departure the hall was expanded and re-opened in 1912 as the 1,600-seat vaudeville and film venue named St. James Theatre, operated by Marcus. In the 1920s, it become a popular stock company stage, and in the 1930s it was renamed the Uptown Theatre, operating as a movie theatre and catering to college students with second-run movies. The building was demolished in 1963.

1901

A yellow newspaper article titled, This fall we open our new home on the Charles River. There is a large drawing of the building in the middle of the paper, and at the bottom are the words Beacon and Berkeley Streets Boston. In 1933, the Emerson College of Oratory purchased 130 Beacon Street to house administration and classrooms. It is the first building purchased for what will become the Back Bay campus. This would also become the heart of the Back Bay campus, with the Emerson community gathering in front of the building, dubbing the area as “The Wall.”.

1933

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