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by Jacob Marmor (pseudonym)

Friday, August 7, 1942

in What's New In Town

W. J. Sidis


        Liliuokalani, the last Queen of Hawaii, deposed by a revolution in 1894, took refuge in Brookline, which she regarded as a second home. From there she appealed to Americans to respect the independence of her country. It was from Brookline that she first sent out for publication the Hawaiian national song she had composed long before—"Aloha Oe," the model for all the pseudo-Hawaiian songs that have followed since. And, as the initiator of the Hawaiian revolution had his ancestors in Jamaica Plain, the whole affair begins to sound much like a local Boston fracas. "Queen Lil" died in the firm belief that American acquisition of the base at Pearl Harbor was bound to mean trouble for both United States and Hawaii.


        "Broadway," a name of importance in such communities as New York or Los Angeles, does not necessarily mean much in Greater Boston. There is only one Broadway in the Boston city limits, and, though an important street in South Boston, the downtown portion is rather dilapidated. The Broadway in Chelsea and Revere is the "main stem" of those cities. Likewise with Everett's Broadway, which is, however, an out-of-the-way highway in Malden and Saugus; it passes through Melrose, but is utterly inaccessible from the rest of that community. The Broadway passing through Somerville and Arlington is an important boulevard, but by no means the main street. Similarly with the Broadways of Cambridge and Lynn. Newton and Watertown each possesses a Broadway only a couple of hundred feet long, and difficult to find.

        Boston's only Main Street is in Charlestown, and it is really a continuation of Boston's own Washington Street. The suburbs are full of Main Streets, though. Cambridge's and Somerville's Main Streets are hardly what the name implies. There is also a Main Street in Watertown and Waltham—part of the old Post Road. Another Main Street runs through Stoneham, the Readings and Andover, and is a continuation of the Fellsway. There is also a Main Street running through Everett, Malden, Melrose and Wakefield. Los Angeles may have the greatest of all Main Streets, but our Metropolis has a remarkable number of them, and all strictly suburban.


        Boston University has the largest attendance of any educational institution in New England—is, in fact, one of the largest in that respect in the country. It was one of the pioneers in co-education for colleges. It is scattered over the city, having grown by acquiring a number of assorted schools all over town. The main building of Boston University was originally built in 1877 for Harvard Medical School.


        Winthrop is the only municipality in Greater Boston that never had street cars.


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