View of Franklin Street before the fire of 1872, Franklin Place and Tontine Crescent, Boston, Mass., 1856-1858

Collection Type

  • Photography



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Tontine Crescent, a Bulfinch designed block of residences, is seen on the right side of the image. It was completed in 1794 and demolished in 1858. The block was part of Franklin Street and was between Hawley and Otis Streets. The central pavilion with the pillars was used by the Boston Library Society until 1858 and was replicated as the façade of the Kirstein Business Branch of the Boston Public Library on City Hall Avenue. The street on the left is Franklin Place. The structures on both sides of the street and the park were replaced by commercial buildings.


Descriptive Terms

exterior views
town houses
libraries (buildings)
albumen prints


Recto of mount: [embossed with photographer's name and address:] Photograph By WHIPPLE & BLACK 96 WASH'N ST.; Verso of mount: Franklin St. Boston - Before the fire of 1872 [in a different hand:] From Estate of W.W. Clapp June 23-1915. [in a different hand:] File Spec. Photos Whipple & Black - 1856-1859 {Gift of Bostonian Society 22 Nov. 1923}

Additional Identification Number

OVP Photo Database Number 45
OVP Number OVP0043

Physical Description

1 photographic print

Collection Code


Collection Name

General photographic collection

Date of Acquisition

22 November 1913

Reference Code


Image Dimensions

10.875 x 9.75 (HxW)(inches)

Credit Line

Gift of the Estate of W.W. Clapp to the Bostonian Society, 13 June 1913; Gift of the Bostonian Society to Historic New England/SPNEA.


Boston (Suffolk county, Massachusetts)

Record Details


Whipple & Black (Photographer)

Material Type

albumen prints

Other People

Bulfinch, Charles, 1763-1844

Other Organizations

Boston Library
Boston Public Library


Architectural photography
Tontine Crescent (Boston, Mass.)
Franklin Place (Boston, Mass.)
Franklin Street (Boston, Mass.)
Hawley Street (Boston, Mass.)
Otis Street (Boston, Mass.)


Top right quarter of recto stained; scratched; mount stained from adhesive along edges of print; bottom right corner of mount missing.

Description Level


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