City of Lowell Parks in 1922

South Common

The 1922 Annual Report of the Board of Parks of the City of Lowell lists the following parks as being owned and maintained by the city. After the name of the park, is its size in acres (according to the report), a description of where it is or was located, and any other relevant information.

Anne Street Parkway – 0.6 acres – Anne Street ran along the Merrimack Canal between the canal and St. Anne’s Church/Lowell High. When Lowell High expanded in 1922, Anne Street was discontinued and made part of Lucy Larcom Park. Anne Street Parkway was the grass strip on the St. Anne’s side of Anne Street.

Boulevard Park – 6.03 acres – I believe this is what is now known as the Vandenberg Esplanade on the north bank of the Merrimack River.

Cardinal O’Connell Parkway – 0.11 acres – This is the island in the middle of Cardinal O’Connell Parkway. It runs between Merrimack and Market Streets and contains monuments to William Cardinal O’Connell, the early Irish immigrants, and the early Greek immigrants.

City Hall & Memorial Building grounds – 0.5 acres – This would be the grassy area around City Hall and the Library although it would not include today’s JFK Plaza which was added in the 1960s as part of the Northern Canal Urban Renewal Project.

Coburn Square – 0.25 acres – This small park is at the corner of Stevens and Chelmsford Streets. The Coburn family is prolific in the history of Lowell. One of its members owned and lived on a large farm in this location.

Colonial Ave Riverbank – 3.5 acres – This is the north bank of the Merrimack River opposite the North Campus of UMass Lowell running from the Howe Bridge to the Cox Bridge.

Corner Rogers & Nesmith streets – 0.01 acres – This is essentially a traffic island that still exists today at the merger of Nesmith Street into Rogers.

Fayette St. Playground – 0.17 acres – This is on the east side of Fayette Street between Chestnut and Church streets. In 1922 there was a swimming pool on the parcel; today there’s a basketball court.

First Street Oval – 12.3 acres – This park was east of Bridge Street on the north bank of the Merrimack. It was discontinued when the Lowell Lawrence Boulevard was constructed.

Franklin Square – 0.06 acres – Not yet identified.

Glacial Oval – 0.01 acres – this is a small circle of grass with a boulder in the middle. It is located on Glacial Ave which runs south from Westford Street between Stevens and Wilder. The former Montefiore Synagogue is also on Glacial Ave.

Harris Oval – 0.12 acres – This is the interior of a small traffic circle at the intersection of Harris Ave and D Street in the Highlands.

Highland Park – 5.55 acres – This park is bounded by Stevens, Parker, Wilder and B streets and was acquired by the city in 1922. In 1966, it was renamed Callery Park in honor of William Callery, a neighborhood resident who was killed in action in Vietnam while serving with the US Army.

Hillside Park – 0.06 acres – This is a small triangle for grass on Parker Street where it splits with Plain Street near the Laura Lee School in the Highlands.

Hovey Square – 0.01 acres – This is a small traffic island at the intersection of Hovey, Butman and Holyrood in Belvidere.

Hutchinson Square – 0.04 acres – This small triangle of grass is on Liberty Street where it splits from Hutchinson Street just up the hill on Liberty Street from Lincoln Square.

John T. Durkin Playground – 1.53 acres – On Chelmsford Street next to the Lincoln School. It’s named for John T. Durkin who died while serving with the US Navy during World War I.

John J. O’Donnell Playground – 10.66 acres – On Gorham Street next to the Butler Middle School. It is named for John J. O’Donnell who was lost at sea while serving with the U.S. Navy during World War I.

Lenox Square – 0.18 acres – Not yet identified.

Lincoln Square – 0.02 acres – Small patch of grass at Lincoln and Chelmsford Streets. Home of the Abraham Lincoln monument.

Lucy Larcom Park – 0.5 acres – On the east bank of the Merrimack Canal, named for mill worker and author Lucy Larcom. Originally this park was the land between the canal and Anne Street but when Anne Street was discontinued, Lucy Larcom Park expanded to include all of the space between the canal and Lowell High School.

Mansur Square – 0.05 acres – Triangle at the intersection of Mansur Street and Parkview Ave.

Middlesex Park – 0.03 acres – Not yet identified.

Monument Square – 0.09 acres – The grass triangle in front of City Hall that holds the Ladd & Whitney Monument as well as the Winged Victory Monument and the Donald Arcand Monument. Land deed to the city by Merrimack Manufacturing Company in 1847. Ladd & Whitney Monument installed in 1865.

Mt Vernon Park – 0.03 acres – A triangle formed by Third, Durant, and Vernon Streets in Centralville. Created in 1865.

North Common – 11.39 acres – Sold to the city in 1845 by the Proprietors of the Locks and Canals.

Parker-Spalding Park – 0.04 acres – Not yet identified.

Paul T. Kittredge Park – 1.8 acres – Belvidere Park enclosed by Nesmith, Andover, Chestnut and Park streets. Originally called Belvidere Park, also Washington Square. Sold to the city by the Nesmith Brothers in 1860.

Pawtucket St Park at Northern Canal – 0.9 acres – The grassy area alongside the Northern Canal at Pawtucket Street.

Penniman Square – 0.05 acres – A triangle formed by Pine Street and Liberty Street in the Highlands. Granted to the city by Valentine Wilson and George F. Penniman in 1880.

Princeton Square – 0.03 acres – A triangle at the northeast corner of the intersection of Princeton Boulevard and Baldwin Street.

Raven Road Park – 0.08 acres – Not yet identified.

Riverside Park – 0.11 acres – Not yet identified.

Rogers Fort Hill Park – 34.4 acres – Gift to the city from Emily and Elizabeth Rogers in 1886. It was part of their father, Zadock Rogers’ 247 acre farm which he purchased in 1805.

Shedd Playground – 56.0 – Located at Rogers and Boylston streets. Gift to the city from Freeman Shedd in 1910.

South Common – 22.48 acres – Sold to the city in 1845 by the Proprietors of the Locks and Canals.

Thomas F. Mann Square – 0.08 acres – Not yet identified

Tyler Park – 1.8 acres – On Westford Street in upper Highlands. Gift to the city from Mary Ann Sanders Tyler and Susan Emma Tyler in 1893. Tyler Park Historic District created in 1989.

Wannalancit Park – 1.08 acres – Not yet identified.

Water Works Square – 0.05 acres – Triangle at junction of West Sixth and West Streets in Centralville. Created in 1903.

Washington Park – 2.89 acres – On Middlesex Street alongside Pawtucket Canal. Now known as Clemente Park. Sometimes called Pailin Park.

Wyman Park – 5.22 acres – Between Mansur and Hovey Street.


2 Responses to City of Lowell Parks in 1922

  1. EileenL says:

    Franklin Square is listed as 107 Adams & Lagrange St in the 1924 atlas.
    Lenox Square could be city property at Lenox & Whipple Street.
    Middlesex Park is listed as 1565 in the 1924 atlas.
    Raven Road Park is probably the grassy strip that divides the road.
    Riverside Park is now Fels Playground.
    Thomas F. Mann Square is at the intersection of South & Highland Streets. He died during WW1.
    Wannalancit Park is at 10 Varnum Ave by the O’Donnell Bridge.

    I can find no mention of Parker Spaulding Park.