Posted by: norstarnewengland | June 27, 2009

Waymarking around Watertown and Newton, MA

Over Memorial Day weekend, I visited Mt. Auburn Cemetery, and then stopped in Newton Center for some ice cream. Both had a lot of potential waymarks, but i limited myself to a few.

Mt. Auburn Cemetery itself is a great place to visit and is on the register of National Historic Landmarks. It is one of the first park-like cemeteries in the country, and it is so well manicured. Of course, there is a long list of things you can’t do (using a grave as home plate in a baseball game would be a no-no), so it’s not a recreational facility. It is a favorite place for birders, where you can see warblers, waterfowl, hawks, and other birds. Of course, there are many graves to look at, including ornate monuments and monuments of famous people. I did not have an opportunity to look for these. I’ll have to do that next time. Several trees and the rhododendrons were in bloom at the time. One thing I noted while doing my research is that 80% of the cemetery is in Watertown, yet the mailing address is Cambridge (the other 20%). The entrance itself is just inside Watertown. Cambridge, I guess, is more appealing.

The tower, which is part of the logo for the cemetery, provides outstanding views of the Watertown-Cambridge-Boston area. You have to climb two-three stories of spiral stone stairs to get to one of the observation levels, though (no elevators). It is dedicated to General and President George Washington who had successfully driven the British out of Boston, and who is endeared by Bostonians ever since.

While eating ice cream in Newton Center, we stood by this bell that was in a brick patio. The stone building next to it was probably a church at one time but was now used as offices. There is a Baptist Church at another corner of the road. I wonder if it is the same congregation.

The fire station and headquarters is around the corner from the bell. The two are separate buildings but within about 20 ft of one another and facing different roads. Ivy covers the walls of the headquarters.

The octagon structure, now used as a spa, has been a target for a waymark for a long time, and now was the time to post it. It has been on this prominent corner along Centre Street for years. I remember it being a florist shop, then some one’s office. I wonder what it will be used for next.

I had not noticed this flagpole before (with the stone office building in the background), but as I walked by it, I noticed that there was more to it. It turns out that it was a WWI memorial and had quite a bit of detail to it.

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