A Look At Lynnfield-Related Items Up For Auction, 10/30 Edition

In which your local editor finds things on eBay connected to Lynnfield and proceeds to ramble about them in a hopefully amusing fashion.

Lynnfield Patch regularly runs this column taking a look at some of the items connected to town that can be found for sale on eBay. Here are some of the latest examples:

Nagging Relatives Throughout History: Back in the summer of 1919, somebody sent a letter to Mrs. Harry Maynard of Lynnfield from Framingham. You can also try to read the back of the letter, but it seems there are Egyptian hieroglyphics that would be easier to decipher than some of it. Going out on a limb here, the letter appears to be about a box of (?) that their uncle had previously sent Mrs. Maynard. Whatever was in the box, the sender seems a little bit annoyed with Mrs. Maynard that she didn't contact him or her "at once" to confirm that she had received it. I have a few similar items in my own collection of relics from the past - particularly a sealed and folded up letter mailed in 1838 to O. Pease, Esq. in New Haven, Connecticut.

The War Chest Fund: I'm guessing this is sort of a predecessor to the war bonds that people bought during World War II. It's a pin for the "Greater Lynn Warchest Fund" from the World War I era, including Lynnfield among four other surrounding towns. The auction for this one ends the same day this article runs, so grab it if you want it. There's very little information online about the War Chest funds from this era. I found a somewhat sniveling article from someone on PBS.org that ran back on September 10, 2001 basically disapproving of that era's U.S. war propaganda posters (an interesting date for that to run), and this item from Google Books shows that after the war, some communities changed the names to "community chests" to help fund local charities and to assist local returning veterans. So save that little factoid for the next you break out your Monopoly game.

Calling All Phillumenists: Here's another potentially useless bit of information you can pick up by reading this column regularly - a person who collects matchbook covers is called a "phillumenist." In this case, the matchbook in question comes from the old Suntaug Lake Inn on Route 1, then known as the Newburyport Turnpike. It's phone number was "Breakers 8600." How you actually made that work, I have no idea, although I assume it involved calling the operator (are they still out there?) and leaving it all in his or her (probably her in that era) hands. On another note, this place actually had a pretty good slogan back in those days: "Two places to eat - here and home."

A Porthole To The Past: This postcard gives us a glimpse of what another area of the old Ship's Haven dining room looked like. This, of course, was the predecessor to the currently closed "" restaurant on Route 1. Despite some four decades of living on the North Shore, I've never actually been inside of that building, so I may never know how much the interior design changed over the years - I assume considerably since there didn't seem to be as many portholes on the current Ship building. The place's motto was "Where smart people wine and dine." Perhaps this was a few years before somebody thought up that old (and now largely discarded) standby, "where the elite meet to eat." In general, it seems way less common for restaurants to offer their own postcards these days. On a completely unrelated note, another former New England stand-by you never see anymore is that delicious kidney bean salad/dip stuff many restaurants used to serve with crackers decades ago.

LFD Badge: Here's a cool item from the town's past - it's an antique badge from the Lynnfield Fire Department. Unfortunately, the seller does not provide additional information about what era or decade this may be from. It does have a very vintage look to it though, and even though it's just a little metal badge, it seems to feature the quality workmanship that was common up until recent decades.

Dorothy October 29, 2011 at 01:20 PM
My guess is that with the breakers phone number you would use the first three letter BRE and assign the corresponding number on the dial. Lynnfield Center, for example, was Edgewood (334).
Dorothy October 29, 2011 at 01:27 PM
I remember people saying ED4-5555 (ex.) when referring to their telephone number or that of a business.
William Laforme (Editor) October 29, 2011 at 01:34 PM
Good morning Dorothy - I've seen similar numbers mentioned in movies over the years, maybe it was a bit like an area code and then there were so fewer phones that they only needed the other few digits. But I don't know that one for sure.
Nikki October 29, 2011 at 02:13 PM
Very enjoyable article, William! That kidney bean dip with crackers is so good. Haven't been to the Continental on Rt. 1 or Angelica's on Rt. 114 lately, but both used to serve it. Anyone else remember when you didn't need the first two letters or numerals when dialing the phone? We used to just dial (ex.) 4-5555.
William Laforme (Editor) October 29, 2011 at 02:14 PM
Hello Nikki - I actually just drove past the Continental last night and was thinking about checking their menu online to see what it looks like these days.
William Laforme (Editor) October 29, 2011 at 02:18 PM
Also - I just remembered, I'm pretty sure the Epicurean Shop at the Century House on 114 Peabody sells the bean dip.
Nikki October 29, 2011 at 06:05 PM
I will have to take a trip up to the Epicurean Shop! In the meantime, this receipe comes pretty close: Drain and rinse 1 can red kidney beans. Pour in a bowl and mix in 1/4 c. minced onion, 3 T. mayonnaise, dash of dry mustard, dash of Worcestershire sauce, 1 t. horseradish (or to taste), 3 T. sweet green relish, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well and chill thoroughly. Enjoy!
William Laforme (Editor) October 29, 2011 at 07:03 PM
That's great Nikki, thanks so much!


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