LETTER: Recollections of John Bailey, architect

Courtesy photo/Museum of Old NewburyA view looking up Green Street in Newburyport toward the recently built City Hall.

To the editor:

The front-page “History Happenings” item on the front page of the Oct. 3 Daily News discussed the paint supply store operated by a Mr. Hamilton and located on Green Street where the police station now stands.

Your readers may be interested in the attached photo, from the Museum of Old Newbury, that shows a view up Green Street toward the recently built City Hall. You can see Mr. Hamilton’s store, a “saltbox” structure just above the building on the corner (which is still there today) and two additional old structures between it and City Hall.

Mr. Hamilton’s next-door neighbor was the shop of John E. Bailey, “Architect and Builder.” Mr. Bailey was a prominent local contractor, responsible for the Belleville Congregational Church (where he was also an organist), the 1882 addition to the public library, and probably the interior work on the Institution for Savings on State Street.

If you’re wondering why I seem to know so much about Mr. Bailey, it’s because he also built an addition to his residence, an older (ca. 1786) house on Kent Street, which was in his family for two generations before him, and has been my family’s home since 1981!

Glenn Richards


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