Fall River families

Durfees, Braytons, Chaces, Bordens, society families, The Hill

  • Fall River Painted Ladies and City Treasures

    painted_ladies_dance.gif  The term Painted Lady came into the American vernacular  with a popular publication featuring San Francisco’s lovely old Victorians, which were being lovingly restored and painted in ice cream parlor shades in the 1960’s-70’s. Every city has a few of these grande dames from another era.  For awhile they became white elephants, cut up for multi-family units, condos, or business offices.  In the 1970’s, with the gas crisis, nobody wanted a Painted Lady with her 10-12 foot ceilings to heat. 

    Finally, preservationists and homeowners everywhere are coming to appreciate the intricate gingerbread, interior woodwork, tin ceilings, hardware, stained glass and irreplaceable beauty and craftmanship of these gracious old homes. 

     The Hill area in the north end of Fall River boasts a plethora of Painted Beauties from Rock, Belmont, Highland Avenue, Underwood, High, French, Lincoln, North Main and Maple to the south end of town.  This little album is one of several to come extolling the grandeur and the glory of old Fall River homes, churches and mills.

  • Two for the Book Shelf

    chace.jpgcharlton.jpgThe Charlton Story by Earle Perry Charlton II and George Winius is chock full of details and photos about one of the founders of the F.W. Woolworth Co., and his efforts to start a new type of business in the late 1800’s in Fall River.  A self-made man, Charlton started his first little store with his savings which would grow into a chain of 53 E.P. Charlton five and ten cent stores which spanned Canada and the west coast from Seattle to San Diego- with the business based in Fall River.  Fascinating reading!

    A trip to Oak Grove will reveal more than a few headstones with the venerable name of CHACE.  This memoir by James Chace is not only flavored with the spice of Fall River, it is, as Jane Kramer, author of Europeans states:  “A wonderful memoir about a family trying to locate itself in a house, a town, a century, in its own traditions, in the wayward and capricious promise of this country.  The Chaces are a remarkably American family, and James Chace brings to them a historian’s eye and novelist’s gift.”

    Both volumes are for sale at the Fall River Historical Society gift shop, with the Chace book on sale for $7.95- a GREAT summer read!