Townie Tidbits


Years ago, back in my younger days I joined the Charlestown Historical Society as a lifetime member. I love researching history, was a history major in college and consider myself a history buff, especially local history which often goes under the radar.

Thanks to Seth over at Independent Newspapers, I and many others in the Town found out that there is a memorial sculpture dedicated to the old Charlestown Potato Sheds which existed since the end of the 19th century. I remember it well as a kid growing up because it was a big part of my mother’s family from Charlestown. My Uncle Jim Callahan worked at the potato sheds while a young college student and then when the shed owner F.J. Ward retired, he bought the business from him.

I remember the fire that destroyed so many of the produce companies down at the rail yards. Business slowly died and within a few years, it was no more.

It was one of Charlestown’s largest employers and it came crashing down so quickly after that fire. I always wondered why the potato sheds were so forgotten and now I find out that state officials actually created a sculpture in honor of the site but hid it by the on ramp to the Tobin Bridge to Chelsea where no one could see it. Why build it at all?

I have been working with Cookie Giordano from “Charlestown and Beyond’ to see if that sculpture could be relocated to a much more appropriate spot for all to see. We need to start lobbying the state to do something about fixing the issue by recognizing we need to honor the history of the potato sheds in a better setting. We need your help out there. Email this column with your suggestions as to where a proper site might be found at [email protected].

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