Twentieth century Boston

Author: Poole, A. F.
Publisher: F.D. Nichols Co.
Date: 1905
Location: Boston (Mass.)

Dimensions: 51.0 x 74.0 cm.
Scale: Not drawn to scale
Call Number: G3764.B6A3 1905 .P6


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This is one of the last recorded bird's eye views of Boston proper. It foreshadows the vertical growth of downtown during the 20th century when the late 19th-century skyline composed of buildings typically three, four, five, and six stories high, was replaced with a skyline dominated by high-rise commercial and office buildings.

Similar to the views published in the 1870s, this image observes the city from the east as if approaching through Boston Harbor. In the foreground the harbor is filled with a variety of ships, most of which are now steam powered vessels. The central focus of the drawing is the central business district. Although no legend identifies prominent buildings, the drawing provides enough detail to count the stories in many structures. The skyline is starting to change, with many buildings approaching or exceeding ten stories.

This depiction was drawn by Bert Poole, a native of Brockton. From 1880-1905, he produced approximately 45 bird's eye views, primarily of Massachusetts and other New England towns. Although this was his last recorded view, he was also employed as a commercial and newspaper artist.

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