Lakeside & Central Avenue
Looking East

December 11, 1945; Louis L. McAllister

October 26, 2006; Caitlin Meives
UTM 180641563E; 4924625N

On the left side of the image one sees the corner of the Blodgett Factory (more information: Lakeside Avenue - near Central Avenue).  Bell Aircraft Corporation occupied the large factory building behind that when McAllister took the image in 1945.  Queen City Cotton Company constructed this building in 1894 and occupied it until 1940.[14]  Burlington Realty Corporation is listed in the 1941/1942 and 1943 city directories at this address and Bell Aircraft first appears in the directory at #128 Lakeside Ave. in 1944.  Crossing the street in front of #128 is the Rutland Railroad underpass.  Prior to 1909 these tracks ran level with the road and were the site of a tragic accident.  Blow relates a story about a young woman who was hit by a train in 1900 as she walked to work at the factory.  He notes for lovers of ghost tales that her ghost has reputedly been seen in the area.[15]  The veracity or even the possibility of this accident is difficult to verify for this area is not covered on the 1900 Sanborn Insurance map.  In addition, there is no mention of the construction of an underpass in either the 1909 or 1910 Annual City Reports.

On the right side of the image are houses #57/59 (also present in the Lakeside Avenue - West of Conger Avenue image) and #63/69.  Barely visible in the distance is a one story house, #79.  These, as well as the other houses on Lakeside Ave., are part of the Lakeside Development historic district.  Queen City Cotton Company began building houses around its factory in 1894 to house its employees and their families.  According to the National Register nomination, #79 was built circa 1899 and originally functioned as a barbershop.  #63/69 was built circa 1899 as well and was originally used as a grocery store and private school.  #57/59 was built circa 1900-1901. 

As with the Lakeside Avenue - West of Conger image, the street has just received a temporary wearing surface for the winter to avoid “the troubles of early spring break-up of the old dirt and cinder street.”  The description on the back of the picture also notes the crushed stone placed at the bottom of the driveways to meet the new grade of the road.[16] 

[14] Burlington Sanborn Insurance Map, 1894.

[15] Blow vol. 1, 86-87.

[16] (author unknown), Photo Caption, Louis L. McAllister

All the structures in McAllister's original image remain intact.  The Blodgett factory has a moderate sized addition for truck deliveries and continues to house the Blodgett Oven Company, which, according to the company's website, is “the leading manufacturer of commercial ovens in the world.”[17]  The factory at #128 held Bell Aircraft Corporation until 1948, General Electric from 1949 to 1989 and today holds a number of businesses and offices, including General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products.  Except for cosmetic changes and alterations to the porches, the houses remain relatively unchanged. 


Historic Burlington Project
Depression Era Streetscapes: Old North End | 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 University of Vermont Library Special Collections, Louis L. McAllister Photograph Collection