From “Forgotten New England” ~ The Old Lamplighter

Our friend and Lowell Historical Society colleague Ryan Owen over at “Forgotten New England” offers us an interesting glimpse in to a forgotten but important occupation in Lowell and elsewhere from back in the Victorian era.

Lamplighters turned night into day.  A staple of the urban Victorian streetscape, the nostalgic image persists of a lone man, walking a darkening city street as dusk descended behind him, extending his staff to ignite each dark, cold lamp stem to life with a small flame.  He would light the way along the lonely city lanes, so that those who were out after dark would not lose their way…

Read the full account here:





George Russell Downtown Lowell Panorama, 1918

The Lowell Historical Society is constantly receiving artifacts from people around the country. While it would be an impossible task to share them all out with the world, we like to share a few of our more recent acquisitions.

Recently, an 80-year-old woman who moved from Lowell to Vermont in the 1950s sent us a box of newspapers and panoramas. One of them was this George Russell that will celebrate its 100th birthday in a few more years.

Click the thumbnail to view the full (4.5 MB) image:


And a tagged version


The Honorable Benjamin F. Butler Born This Day ~ November 5, 1818

On this Day November 5, 1818 – Benjamin F. Butler – a lawyer and politician who represented Massachusetts in the United States House of Representatives and later served as the 33rd Governor of Massachusetts and served as a major general in the Union Army during the Civil War – was born in Deerfield, NH. He is buried in his wife’s family cemetery, behind the main Hildreth Cemetery in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Lowell Historical Society: Bust of Benjamin Franklin Butler, Civil War General, Congressman, and Governor