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Dorchester Illustration of the Day, May 19, 2009
Shepard's Bake House
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 Dorchester Illustration of the Day no. 1305

Shepardís Bakery was located in the building in the middle of todayís illustration at the point of the intersection of Winter Street and Bowdoin Street.

Otis Chepard was first employed at Bent's factory [Milton], but after serving his apprenticeship he joined joined his brother Hiram in 1818, under the firm name of Otis Shepard & Co., and opened a small cracker bakery near where the present soldiers' monument is at Meeting House Hill. They prospered, and in 1820 built the brick building still standing on Bowdoin Street, and long known as a landmark. In the Shepard family were eight brothers, Otis being the older. In time Hiram left the firm and was succeeded by James, who, after Otis died, became head of the enterprise. Horatio was employed as driver and he became head of the firm after James' death in 1869. Horatio had a son, Albert E., who, after leaving school, entered his father's employ and succeeded to the ownership when death claimed his father in 1880.

Under his management the business flourished, and two retail stores were operated in connection with the main bakery. One was at 417 Neponset Avenue, and the other was at 1401 Dorchester Avenue, which latter store was sold to David Smith in 1907. About fifteen years ago Mr. Shepard was afflicted with rheumatism, and since 1903 has not been able to walk, which sickness finally caused him to close the bakery in 1907, and brought to a close the family's connection with the bakery business. The Shepard bakery became famous for its " 'Lection Cakes." These were sold especially at election or town-meeting days, when Mr. Shepard always had a counter in the Town Hall. These cakes were made of a good, rich bun dough, and sold at twenty cents a sheet, and weighed about a pound and one-half.

Source: Bakers and Baking in Massachusetts, including the flour, baking supply and kindred interst from 1620 to 1909. By Arthur W. Brayley. Boston: The Master Bakers' Association of Massachusetts, 1909.

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Created: May 19, 2010   Modified: May 19, 2010