Resource Guide - Photographs of Salem, Massachusetts

Salem, MA, USA
54 Washington Street, c. 1920
Salem State University Archives and Special Collections
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Historical Photographs of Salem, Massachusetts

Almshouse and Hospital for Contagious Diseases Burial Ground - Salem, Massachusetts

Salem, MA, USA

 Frank Cousins, Almshouse on Salem Neck, c. 1890. Digital Commonwealth, Phillips Library.

The last almshouse to be built in Salem, opened in 1816 on Collins Cove. It was large — five stories — and was designed by Charles Bulfinch of Boston. 

Excerpt from 1815 report requesting a new Almshouse
City of Salem Archives
Bulfinch’s almshouse was intended to house 100 residents, many of whom were expected to work the adjacent farm to offset the cost of their stay. In 1884, after years of overcrowding, an additional building, designed by W.D. Dennis, was built on the property to serve as a hospital for contagious diseases. In all, the site was active for over a century and burials are often referenced in city documents. This cemetery would have served as the only option for patients who were unable to afford a funeral or that had no family to claim their remains. 

Hospital for Contagious Diseases, c. 1980
Jim McAllister

The almshouse building was razed in 1954, and the adjacent hospital in the 1980s to make way for the Collins Cove Condominium Complex. Many locals recall playing among the headstones as children while the site sat unused. During construction of the condo complex, at least five headstones were reported to have been uncovered, yet their whereabouts are unknown. The burial site remains unmarked and is only identifiable by the remnant of a single slate headstone. The names of those who rest here have yet to be discovered, though with additional research their identities may be revealed.

Collins Cove Condominium Complex, 2019

UPDATE: Jen Ratliff, with the assistance of Historic Salem, Inc. has reached out to the City of Salem and Collins Cove Condo Association to request the burial ground be properly marked and honored. This request received the support of the Historical Commission on 11/6/2019. The City is working toward erecting a memorial and informational sign to honor this site.

UPDATE: View the Almshouse Burial Ground Memorial Proposal and Letters of Support


*Please respect this site and do not trespass on private property. 

126 Bay View Avenue - Salem, Massachusetts

Salem, MA, USA

126 Bay View Avenue, 1989 (MACRIS SAL.3484)

Historic Salem Inc. - 126 Bay View Avenue

Built for
Alfred Peabody
c. 1876

The Juniper Point neighborhood was conceived of by Salem grocer Daniel B. Gardner, Jr., who purchased 45 acres of former farm land in September 1875, at the cost of $21,000. The area had long been used as a summer retreat, with many Salemites and tourists camping along the waterfront in tents. Gardner filed a plan with the City for cottage lots in October 1875 and in November submitted an updated plan which also included stable lots, two parks, and a public hall. The proposal created over 50 residential lots, more than 20 of which were sold in a single day, November 6, 1875. More lots were auctioned off in the summer of 1876 as the neighborhood expanded. The deed for each cottage stipulated that “no shop, store, public house, boarding house, saloon or stable shall ever be erected on said lot nor any building thereon used for any of said purposes.” The deeds continue to state, “that a strip thereof ten feet wide next to the high-water mark shall forever be kept open free and unobstructed as a public sidewalk or promenade.” These stipulations have been upheld in perpetuity.

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