Red Headed Stepchild
(The Barrett family memoir of Navy Life)
by Sophie Ruth Meranski with photos

 

1820 Elm and Alfred Rehder's Bavarian Ivy, Roxbury Latin School-Jack Barrett photo #787 p 25 (R)
Photo by Jack Barrett was used on cover of Thanksgiving l952 quarterly issue of TRIPOD magazine and also in l953 Yearbook. The elm tree dated from about l820, when West Roxbury was thinly settled. It may have been planted or grown spontaneously. Most of the large Roxbury Latin School grounds were owned around 1860 by Francis Shaw, father of Civil War hero Robert Gould Shaw, killed July l863 commanding black troops at Fort Wagner, South Carolina. Shaw owned a large tract west of LaGrange Street extending fromCentre Street south to Washington Street.Reverend Theodore Parker lived nearby on cottage Avenue at the site of the present Saint Theresa School.Most of the Roxbury Latin grounds became property of decorator Richard Codman, related to the Brook Farm family.The School moved from near Warren and Kearsarge Avenues in Roxbury to the Codman estate in l926. Dendrologist Alfred Rehder (l963-l949) of Arnold Arboretum selected the Bavarian ivy seen growing on the building near the doorway and tower.A further historical project for someone: who owned this land when tree first grew - did it grow spontaneously, or was it planted? Jack Barrett looked up much Land Court data on West Roxbury land and said around 1790 Roxbury Latin and the first church in Roxbury owned much West Roxbury land - it would be interesting to clarify who owned this area before Francis Shaw in l840's.
Subject: old West Roxbury elmJack Barrett photo
Year: 1952