North Shore Boston: Country Houses of Essex County

TUE, OCT 4, 2005 (58:12)

Pamela Wilkinson Fox discusses more than 50 great houses in Boston’s North Shore, designed by such architects as McKim, Mead & White, the Olmsted Brothers, Peabody & Stearns, and Ogden Codman. Since the mid-19th century, well-to-do Bostonians have fled the sweltering city streets for the cooling breezes, gently rolling hills, and rugged coastline of the fabled North Shore. From prestigious seaside communities such as Nahant, Marblehead, and Prides’ Crossing to inland villages such as Wenham, Topsfield, and Ipswich, elegant country mansions arose, growing ever grander and more elaborate as the Age of Elegance progressed. Exclusive enclaves such as the Myopia Hunt Club, Eastern Yacht Club, and the Essex Country Club endowed the North Shore with a summer playground where Boston Brahmins mingled with Midwestern moguls (Henry Clay Frick, Richard Crane, and Edwin Swift), US Presidents (William Howard Taft and Calvin Coolidge), and artists and authors, including Maxfield Parrish, Edward Hopper, and Rudyard Kipling.

+ BIO: Pamela Wilkinson Fox

Pamela Wilkinson Fox is a preservation consultant and author of the award winning Farm Town to Suburb: The History and Architecture of Weston, Massachusetts, 1830-1980. Her career has included work for the Boston Landmarks Commission and Rhode Island Historical Society. She is a consultant to the Weston Historical Commission, a member of Weston’s Planning Board, Community Preservation Committee, and Land Trust, and is president of the Weston Historical Society.

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