Thursday, August 6, 2009

If This House Could Talk...

If someone struck up a conversation with your house, what would it say? Would it talk about a famous resident who slept within it's historic walls? Would it gratefully recount a loving restoration by the current owner? Would it explain, for example, why it's surrounded by a purple privacy fence covered with trippy ruminations and a cosmic moose?

The Cambridgeport History Project wants to help you share that story as part of Cambridgeport History Day on October 3rd. (Much more on that in the coming weeks in this space). If you think your house's story is especially interesting, you could be part of a set of houses with "teaser" signs that go up in September. You can bet that the best one I see will be featured on this blog...

Here are the details, via neighbor Cathie Zusy:

The Cambridgeport History Project is seeking Cambridgeport residents or businesses to post signs on their houses/businesses for their fall event “If This House Could Talk…” Saturday, October 3rd, local residents will post (temporary) signs in front of their houses that note some interesting aspect of its history. This could be contemporary history—about the current residents—or it could be stories from the past.

This event will be part of a larger Cambridgeport History Day. The goal of the event is to help make residents aware that they, and their immediate past, are valid parts of the continuum of history and to bring the community together by sharing common stories. The morning of October 3rd people post their signs. These will complement official historical markers. Neighbors are invited to walk around the neighborhood that day, and then share their discoveries with other neighbors at afternoon activities at Dana Park and at the Cambridgeport Neighborhood Association’s annual Potluck at Dana Park that evening. To get the ball rolling, the organizers of Cambridgeport History Day are eager to find people to put up some early “teaser” signs in September. If your house has a good story—or if you know of one that does—and you’re willing to blaze the trail, please contact Cathie Zusy at 617-868-0489 or

Sample signs:

  • If this house could talk…. “It would tell you that writer Jill Rena Bloom once lived here, author of Harlequin romances and books helping parents to better advocate for their children with special needs. And around back in the garage, in 1979, Jill’s husband Ron Mooradian established Mooradian Cover Co., which still, today, manufactures soft case musical instrument covers for classical and jazz musicians worldwide. (This company remains in operation, but in Boston.)”

  • “This house was built 120 years ago as a wedding gift for _[to be added!]___ by her husband, local builder M.C. Packer.” Or ”It was here, on the night of February 14, 2005, that Fred and Frederica decided to share their lives. They were married in 2007 and reside here still.”

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