My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Four Movies Made in Lowell

My photo taken at the Luna Theater in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Since 2008 there have been four major movies filmed in Lowell, Massachusetts. The first two were actually filmed in 2008 and were almost entirely filmed in the city. The last two were filmed in 2017. The idea to do this blog stemmed from when I happened to see Ricky Gervais on the set of his new movie, and shortly after that, I saw Mark Wahlberg for a fleeting second on the set of his movie on a street off of Lincoln Parkway. The first section lists the four movies, with their trailers, the second section covers each of the movies, and the last has a lot of miscellaneous.

The four movies, with titles and links to their trailer are:

The Invention of Lying

The Fighter

Proud Mary

Professor Marston and Wonder Woman

Since I saw two being filmed, partially, and was able to locate scenes from all of them, I decided to take photos of the locations. Perhaps some Lowell residents, might be interested. For those interested, these two are based on true stories; The Fighter and Professor Marston and Wonder Woman.


Clip from the very first visual in the movie.

Hasting Street, Cupples Square (below photo, credit to
the movie).

Cupples Square (Westford and Pine Sts.)
Opening scenes were taken here.
Above photo taken 2018 (with island on left side and Pine St. is one way) and below photo taken about 2013.

The Olympia Restaurant (Market Street), where Amy Adams had dinner.


This location on Central Street is where a lot of filming was done. It was here, where I saw and got to say hello to Ricky Gervais. I was in my car, on the left. Very warm spring day, windows down. Photo location below is when I turned around. Both scenes were in the movie.
Looking at Kearney Sq., Central and Merrimack Sts.

Bridge Street (where cop Edward Norton played one of his funniest roles).

This shot is in the movie, and the following year I went to take this photo of the Massachusetts Mills and Eastern Canal.

Lowell  Auditorium, location for the Casino.

John Street, location for the theater that showed, "The Plague."


In the movie, a young boy is about to enter the blue door.
Moulton Avenue (used for the above and below shots)
The trailer (below) shows a car speeding down this alley.

The minute I saw this shot, I knew where it was filmed, unfortunately, not in Lowell, but at the Stonehurst Estate in Waltham. See my blog for more photos at:
Better photo of the bookcase. A chair replaced the fire hydrant.

A lot of filming was done in an alley, off of Palmer Street. I was there, couldn't see anything, but heard several "Action"s being shouted. However, once the movie came out, I never saw evidence that anything from that location made it to be big screen.
Palmer Street was blocked off to everybody but hired staff. I took this picture from the same alley, but across from the filming, and was was watched by a LA sound crew member, who told me not to make a sound.

A week later, I walked this alley, and couldn't see anything that would have been in the movie.


There were so many scenes that looked familiar, and I tried to find them, but couldn't. However, one of the best, I did find, and I think it tells it all. Here we have a quick shot of Greenwich Village, NYC, 1940. Anybody from Lowell would recognize this scene immediately and know it is on Middle Street. Rodgers Toy store is still in business.

Taken on a Sunday when nobody was around. Unfortunately, I didn't see any filming, but did walk the street, and saw the yellow car.

From the Lowell Sun newspaper, I'm sharing a few interesting articles. The first from Ricky Gervais who tells us why he chose Lowell to film. Some actors in his movie had long roles, but were not given credit on the screen, they were Jason Bateman.  Edward Norton, and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

"Almost the entire movie was filmed in late spring of 2008 in Lowell, and there is no mistaking the cobblestone city streets with any other. For 100 minutes, the city shines as a place where no one is able to tell a lie.
In an interview with The Sun on the set last May, Gervais said he chose Lowell because "it looks so good on film."
He continued, "It's because it is very different. There is no town like it. I think it is really important to make your own iconography. On the face of it, it looks like what you imagine a typical American town to be, but different. So it's just perfect. It's really got a lot of character. The architecture is great.
"It's just something that already looks quaint and the streets look great. I love the way they put the lights in the trees. It's going to look really good. Lowell is going to look great in this film."
And he was right. The city was ready for its close-up and little makeup was required."
Movie locations for The Fighter

Excellent article about the production of Professor Marston

Newspaper article about the filming of Proud Mary and Taraji P. Henson.

Under construction for School Ties

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Lenox Library in Beautiful Berkshire County, Massachussetts

18 Main Street
Lenox, Massachusetts 01240

Building was built about 1815 as the Second County Courthouse. "In 1871, the Greek Revival former courthouse building was purchased for use as a 'public library and reading room free to all visitors and inhabitants of Lenox.'" (From Our History, library webpage.)

First floor, Reference Desk.

First floor, above and five photos below.

The second floor houses the many collections, including a special room for their Special Collections pertaining to history and some genealogy.

"Added to the National Historic Register in 1973, the building was most recently renovated to its original grandeur in 2002-2004. The original court room, with its exquisite domed ceiling, was reconstructed after a century in which the second story had been reconfigured beyond recognition."

Special Collections Room, three photos.
I would have loved to have looked around more than I did, but we didn't have time.

I was lucky to meet the Reference librarian, who kindly opened the Special Collections Room for me, to see where the genealogy and local history books are kept, and allowed me to take photos. In addition, she printed out the below paragraph from History of Lenox by George H. Tucker, printed in 1992 by the Lenox Library Association. I believe they are in the process of updating this book. I did a quick search to see where I could locate it near the Boston area, and had no listings, so, it is a rare book, and I was lucky to get the paragraph about my ancestors. Both father and son were buried in Lenox at the Church on the Hill Cemetery. NOTE: See listing of all those buried at the Church on the Hill Cemetery, aka Little Church on a Hill Cemetery.

"Capt. Oliver Belden, father of Levi Belden, was born in Wethersfield, Connecticut, November 17, 1732, and died in Lenox, September 16, 1811. He was a prominent man in Lenox in the early years of the town. He was selectman and assessor many times and represented Lenox in the Legislature in the years 1805-06 and 1809. He was a member of the congregational church. He lived in the northwest part of the town on the road which leads to the Pleasant Valley Bird and Wild Flower Sanctuary, near the junction of the road which goes west from the Pittsfield Road, from about where Burke's in the Berkshires Inn is, and the road which comes from the north passing the entrance to the Metz place. This house, occupied for many years by his grandson, was destroyed by fire over thirty years ago.
Signed Non-Consumption and Non-Importation Agreement, 1774."

The extensive and varied Special Collections held by the Library range from Colonial Era manuscripts, legal documents and publications through original photographic prints and glass plate negatives to illustrated and annotated early 18th and 19th century volumes, including literary first editions and art and children’s books.

For more information concerning these collections, please contact Information Librarian Christy Cordova at

Photo of an early Lenox map.

Love old card catalogues.

First view of the Library as we walked to it, on a perfect October 2017 day.

If you are in this area, I highly suggest seeing Ventfort. I wrote a blog about it, and you'll see why I'm recommending a visit.

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My reason is because since November 2017 to May 2018, I received no comments, but upon investigating I found that I had indeed received 167 legitimate ones and 1,000 were in the spam folder. Google Blogger had made some changes that I was unaware of. Please be aware that I do not know who reads my blog, I may know who subscribes, but that is all.