Tuesday, January 03, 2006

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Continuing to Look Back ~ Railroad Avenue
Memories from Peter Todd

Well here we are again tracing back on the imprints of my pages of time. With all the work going on and around the Gloucester Depot I have to add my thoughts.

First the new building does not look anything like the former Gloucester Depot. The original was set back further with the rear of the building abutting the paved walkway that is there now. The taxi cabs that you now see crowding out the cars that want to go into Shaw's parking lot ,which was once a railroad freight yard. Trains would almost be in the back yard of the people that lived on Maplewood Avenue. Taxi cabs back then parked backed in to abut the paved walkway of the depot. Passengers would park their cars up against the fenced in area behind the Depot Cafe as well as where the new Condo now stands.

Gloucester Auto bus would make their stop along the back of Babe Whalen's gas station.The Texaco Station is located there now. Where Sheep's Auto parts is once stood a Stud Dealership . I'm not sure but I believe Elliott Parsons and one of the Carr brothers ran it.

Of course we also had the infamous Station Lunch, greatest meals around at that time. Where all the tearing up is going on across the tracks was Neuse's Lumber Yard. The most memorable for me was working my Shoe Shine Stand at the Depot. I also remember my Dad as he would go to mug up at Station Lunch when he worked as a track man for the Boston & Maine Railroad.

Where Ryan's Car Wash stands once stood Welch's Jenny Station. Up the street was the Harbor Cafe, which is now the Rendezvous, and in my youth, next to that was The Clam Shell, which if I remember right was later Aleve Radio & Television Repair. Yankee Taxi was around the corner of Washington Street & Railroad Ave, and Dora Dickson had her one cab , which was always parked on the corner of Mrs. Sloan's house on the corner of Commonwealth Ave.

Back then there were very little traffic jams. Taxi cabs were parked in easy to access areas without impeding the public or drivers. Gives Gas Station was on the corner of Exchange Street and Nelson's Candy was on the opposite.

So I guess that's about it for now . A little bit of my past imprints in the book of time. In closing it is my feeling that the city should adopt some of the parking requirements that these Taxi companies adhered to .

Posted May 13, 2005 09:06 AM
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