Bridge Street, Springvale, ca. 1900

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This image of Bridge Street was taken around 1900. The white building, at left, was built by Butler and Fogg as a shoe factory in 1870. The larger building just behind it was put up in 1888/89 by Burley and Usher, soon to become W.R. Usher and Sons. It too was a shoe factory. The great fire of April 14, 1905 started in this building. It was widely believed that the fire was set so that Mr. Usher could collect the $101,500 for which the building was insured. No proof of insurance fraud was ever established.

The Fogg Block can be seen in the background of the photograph. The large house just to the right of the Fogg Block was the home of Elmer E. Wentworth. Wentworth owned a livery stable, a coal business, and later became an automobile dealer. His garage was on Main Street. After the 1905 fire Wentworth built a new home on the same site. The several homes and stores on the right stood where the Springvale Social Club and Rotary Park are situated today, in 2013.

Pelletier's store, far right, was the only building in this photograph that was not destroyed in the 1905 fire.

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