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Belmont Station Area

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Common St.

At the southern edge of the picturesque center of Belmont stands a small collection of structures associated with the growth of regional railway service from the mid-nineteenth to the early twentieth centuries. Samuel Mead built the small gazebolike, octagonal Gothic Revival building (c. 1840), on what is now the south side of Common Street, as a private school run by his mother-in-law, a member of the prominent Wellington family. When the original 1843 station for the Fitchburg Railroad burned in 1851, the company acquired this small wooden structure for use as its second Wellington Hill Station. Nighttime pranksters enjoyed creating confusion for morning commuters by shifting the little building back and forth across the tracks, until it was replaced by a more substantial structure in 1879. The original owners repurchased and relocated the erstwhile Wellington Hill Station for use as a summerhouse and artist's studio, until it was bought and restored by the Belmont Historical Society in 1975 and returned to approximately its original railroad site.

Directly opposite the Wellington Hill Station is the Craftsman-influenced Belmont Station (1908, NR), built by the Boston & Maine Railroad Company, which had acquired the Fitchburg Railroad in 1902. The Boston & Maine also built the handsome sixty-five-foot-long arched stone railway span (1908) over Leonard Street immediately to the east, with financial assistance from both the town and the commonwealth as part of a statewide program to eliminate dangerous at-grade track crossings. The Belmont Lions Club occupied the handsome depot, with its fieldstone first story, stucco and timber upper story, and red tile roof, after the Boston & Maine suspended passenger service in 1956.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Keith N. Morgan
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Data

What's Nearby

Citation

Keith N. Morgan, "Belmont Station Area", [Belmont, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/MA-01-BL2.

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Massachusetts

Buildings of Massachusetts: Metropolitan Boston, Keith N. Morgan, with Richard M. Candee, Naomi Miller, Roger G. Reed, and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009, 427-427.

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