Northerly view of Elmwood Avenue from nearby number 15, L.L. McAllister, August 25, 1931

            In this image, one can see the infrastructure improvements being made to Burlington's roads by the Burlington Public Works Department throughout the 1920’s and into the 1930’s.  In the background, a grader levels mix-in-place concrete laid to pave the road surface, while in the foreground, a man brushes the still wet concrete to give it a textured surface for better adhesion for the asphalt wear surface to be applied later, as described in the 1931 Burlington Annual Report.  Bags of concrete and hoses attached to fire hydrants to supply the water for mixing the concrete line either side of the area currently being worked on.[1]

            Further back and to the right, one can see numbers 30 and 34 Elmwood.  These identical brick three story Queen Anne dwellings were built in 1901.  Though they are identical in appearance and plan, they have led very different existences.  Number 30 started as the home and offices of Robert Johnson, M.D. and George Samson, dentist.  The house passed through the hands of businessmen Lee J. Morgan and Byron Lambkin, as well as Mrs. J.H. Parkhurst and her daughters Lillian, Marion and Charlotte, before coming to George Cote, who owned it in 1931.  Cote operated a barbershop out of his home there since 1929.  Elias Spear, a milliner, bought number 34 after its construction.  The house passed to University of Vermont Associate Professor Harold I. Williams in 1923 and was in his hands at the time of the photo.  The blending of residential and commercial pursuits characterized the Elmwood Avenue of the late 1920’s and early 1930’s.[2]

            Further back still is number 36/38.  This two-story gable front dwelling with one story side porch was built circa 1865 for George Pope.  Pope began his lengthy career in the grocery business as an agent with Jed P. Clark and Company, wholesale grocers.  A few years later, he is documented as co-proprietor of Miner, Pope and Company, purveyors of tea, coffee, spices and tobacco.  Another few short years later, George is the proprietor of another company, Pope, Berry, Hall and Company, a company that far outlived him.  George died in 1898, leaving the house to his widow, Harriet.  She sold the house to paint and oil salesman John J. White three years later.  Chocolatier Harley Bashaw bought the house from White two years later, and stays there until 1920, when he sold it to John Neary.  The house was still the home of John Neary in 1931.[3]


[1] City of Burlington Annual Report, 1931; 208.

[2] Burlington City Directories, 1901-1931.

[3] Burlington City Directories, 1866-1931.


Northerly view of Elmwood Avenue from nearby Burlington Federal Building, Kurt Jergensen, October 18, 2005. UTM coordinates 0642052, 4926836 (NAD 83).

            In this image, very little has changed since McAllister took his photo in 1931.  New landscaping features can be seen in the left foreground, associated with the Federal Building. New trees have been planted, or been allowed to grow of their own accord, in the case of the white pine near number 30, on both sides of the street to replace the lost elms.





















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L.L. McAllister's Elmwood Avenue Photographs

Historic Burlington Project
Burlington 1890 | Burlington 1877 | Burlington 1869 | Burlington 1853 | Burlington 1830

Produced by University of Vermont Historic Preservation Program graduate students
in HP 206: Researching Historic Structures and Sites - Prof. Thomas Visser
in collaboration with UVM Landscape Change Program
Historic images courtesy of Louis L. McAllister Photograph Collection, University of Vermont Library Special Collections