In Worcester, you can’t just knock down an old building when you feel like it (except if you are certain unspeakable people who shall remain nameless). Historic structures get a one year stay of execution, unless the powers that be grant a waiver. Very often the waiver is granted and the building vanishes, and all we can do is take pictures to remember it by.
Recently, and much to our surprise, Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, about which I wrote not long ago, got a one year stay of execution, though the odds of its surviving are not great.
The news is better about an old tavern in the town.
The Stearns Tavern is one of those buildings I must have passed a thousand times, in a car and on foot, without more than a glance. It was, until recently, a bank. Only in the last couple of years did I learn was one of Worcester’s oldest structures, dating back to about 1812. (I know: in England that’s practically yesterday, ultra-modern, but this is the U.S.)
We didn’t hold out much hope when the Stearns Tavern got its one year reprieve—but lo and behold, thanks to efforts by the city and several private companies, the tavern will be preserved. It’s moving, for the second time, to a more attractive location, and will get a new life as the centerpiece of a park.
Just the facts, ma’am here.
A more detailed story with lots of photographs here.
And the rescue story here.
Despite diligent searching, I’ve been unable to locate older images for a compare and contrast. In the meantime, these photographs are courtesy the indefatigable Walter M. Henritze III.
Please click on images to enlarge.