There is a new coffee table book out on Harvard Square entitled Harvard Square, An Illustrated History Since 1950. This is author Mo Lotman’s first book and it’s a keeper.
I picked up a copy on Friday afternoon and I found I just couldn’t put it down.
My own Harvard Square experience dates back over 25 years to 1983. I had come to Cambridge to visit my brother, a freshman at Harvard. I would return in 1985 to begin my own journey through Harvard College – and Harvard Square.
It was interesting to retrace in this book the history of the Square since that time. However, even more interesting for me was to see the photos and read about the history of Harvard Square in the 1950s, 60s, 70s & early 1980s.
There is more to the history of Harvard Square than is found in the covers of this book. However, there is enough here to give one a good sense of the history of the place over the last 60 years.
Some of my fondest Harvard Square memories include…
Walking to the Tasty at 2 AM after finishing a paper and finding good coffee and good company.
Sitting down to breakfast at The Greenhouse Cafe early on Sunday mornings before the Sunday brunch rush and being treated like royalty by the warm-hearted wait-staff.
Seeing countless films at the Brattle, beginning with I Know Where I’m Going. I’ll never forget the night there were over two hundred lined up outside and around the corner to see the film adaptation of William Faulkner’s novel Sanctuary.
Working at Wordsworth Bookstore: the long line which would spring up at the cash register…Bruce at the information desk…vacuuming after closing.
Cafe Algiers down under, before the 1990 renovation: a table outside, waiting to use the small bathroom, talking.
Faulkner tutorial at Cafe Pamplona in the blue haze of smoke from neighboring tables
Buying concert tickets at Out Of Town News…for Pink Floyd at Foxborough
Passing through the Square on my Vespa….many times on many different Vespas:)
Standing in line on the sidewalk outside the gates to the Yard in a tux for the 350th Harvard celebration…
Crossing the Square after a heavenly winter snow storm with cars few and far between and the silence almost palpable…
Seeing Joe Williams perform live at the Regatta Bar…
Browsing for books at McIntrye and Moore…
Dancing downstairs at Henry IV…
Of course, as a real estate broker it’s great to be located in the absolute heart of Harvard Square. My desk is right behind the Brattle Movie Theatre!
If you are considering buying or selling in Cambridge, I am here to help. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 617-733-8937. I am a Harvard graduate, a Cambridge resident and a top broker in the city since 1999.
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