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1 Kendall Square (Boston Woven Hose and Rubber Co.)

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Boston Woven Hose and Rubber Co.
1886; 1892; 1907–1916, John O. DeWolf and Co., and Stone and Webster Engineering Co. 1981–. Between Hampshire, Portland, and Binney sts. and the Grand Junction Branch of the Boston & Albany Railroad.

Combining multiple weaving circular looms with advances in rubber coating, Colonel Theodore A. Dodge formed a company in 1880 to make fire and garden hose. The business quickly expanded to belting, bicycle tires, gaskets, military balloons, and shoe parts—nearly everything of rubber except clothing. At the firm's height, twenty integrated manufacturing buildings filled the entire block. The 1886 three-story brick office and an 1892 towered factory behind it are the earliest remaining structures. Three massive poured-in-place concrete buildings off Portland Street designed by John O. DeWolfe and Co. (1907–1916), plus boiler and power houses (1912) by Stone and Webster, made the company a real pioneer in the newest fireproof technology. The shift from belt drive to electricity in 1913, combined with direct rail and canal transportation, made the complex virtually self-contained. Absorbed in 1957 by American Biltrite, it closed in 1981, and the Athenaeum Group supervised the adaptive reuse of the property over the next three years. It is now an office and retail complex, with a cinema misleadingly called 1 Kendall Square. The most recent addition is the eight-story Building 1000 for Amgen (2001).

Writing Credits

Keith N. Morgan


What's Nearby


Keith N. Morgan, "1 Kendall Square (Boston Woven Hose and Rubber Co.)", [Cambridge, Massachusetts], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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, 292-292.

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