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by Jacob Marmor (pseudonym)

Friday, March 13, 1942

in What's New In Town

W. J. Sidis


        The highest street number in our metropolis is 5343.  It is located on Washington Street, next to the Dedham line.  Such a number would not be unusual in many other cities, especially out West, where the decimal system of numbering (100 houses to a block) is in use, bring house numbers very commonly into five figures in outlying districts.  But here in New England, where numbering is continuous, this high number is unique.  If Boston should number on the Western decimal system, the number would be about 26,000 at that point―an unusual number even in the West.  It may be interesting to note, by way of comparison, that the highest number on the Island of Manhattan is 5160―on Broadway at Spuyten Duyvil.


        That old building on Somerset Street next to the City Club, and used by the Burroughs Newsboys Foundation, may be dated 1928, but its general style is obviously much older.  It is nothing less than the old headquarters of Boston University, from about seventy years ago, the “Jacob Sleeper Hall” of that period.  The peculiar side entrance on the left of the main front door was, in those days, used as a special ladies’ entrance, in a time when people were not used to the idea of a co-educational institution.  The newsboys still use the old classrooms for study purposes.


        Boston had underground telephone wires in 1882―over twenty years before anything of the sort was attempted elsewhere.


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