My motto is: Learn Something New Every Day, which I certainly have fulfilled on this day. The morning began with my selecting what was to be a “simple” postcard to feature with some brief notations. The day ultimately unraveled into more extensive research than anticipated.
My goal initially was to provide “some” insight into this building called the City Hotel. As I continued to research, it seemed at each turn there was just a little more to “learn”. The end result is my notated efforts of combining the historical highlights of this building–which is no more–and the evolution of one which replaced it.
Today’s “One Postcard Saturdays” serial feature is an undivided card showing the former City Hotel, that was located in Taunton, Massachusetts. The postcard shows the location of the corner at City Square and Broadway, dates from 1904 to 1907 and was published by The Metropolitan News Co., of Boston, Mass.
Taunton was founded in 1637, was incorporated as a town in 1639 and then as a city in 1864. It is located about 15 miles from the Eastern border of Rhode Island. Also known as the Silver City, Taunton was a historic center of the silver industry.
There are a few points of interest displayed in the postcard picture, including the trolley tracks on the streets and set in the background (on the left side) is the Bristol County Superior Court building.
This particular card was not postmarked and has no message. It is my belief that this card was part of Grandma Julia’s collection as she lived over that way during her later years and is buried in Rumford, RI–one of our Eastern most towns. There were a few other postcards of Taunton which were under consideration today but I had to choose just one to post. If you would like to learn more about Grandma Julia, check out my previous blog: Intro to Grandma Julia and the Bitgood’s Pine Knoll Laboratory.
While researching for information about the site location and history of the City Hotel, I was able to learn a few things of interest. For one, way back in the early 1800’s, the site of this hotel was known as Tillinghast Corner, named after a lawyer of that era. In 1818, this site was purchased by Jesse Smith, who was associated with stages and stage lines. Mr. Smith, and other parties, built the Bristol County House here in 1833 for the accommodation of stage passengers. This building was destroyed by fire on June 24, 1848.
The City Hotel was built on the site soon after 1848 and by 1920 it had been renamed to The Taunton Inn. After being destroyed by fire in 1926 (this original City Hotel building), another Taunton Inn was built in 1929 at a different location of 33 Summer Street. The new Taunton Inn contained a well-known restaurant called The Herring Run Room.
The Inn closed in 1960 and was sold to the Diocese of Fall River, later becoming a skilled nursing center called Marian Manor–still in operation.
Until next time…
City of Taunton; Webpage: taunton-ma.gov/about-our-city; Accessed 02 February 2019.
Emery, Samuel Hopkins, D.D.; History of Taunton, Massachusetts: From Its Settlement to the Present Time; D. Mason & Company; Syracuse, N.Y.; 1893; books.google.com; Accessed 02 February 2019.
Metropostcard.com; Webpage: metropostcard.com/publishersm2.html.
Old Colony History Museum; Webpage: oldcolonyhistorymuseum.org/?s=marian+manor; Accessed 02 February 2019.
Pineault, Sandra J.; Memoirs of the School Street Village; Blog posts from Sept 12, 2013 and Feb 26, 2013; schoolstvillage.blogspot.com; Accessed 02 February 2019.