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Harrison Square
Harrison Square Depot
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 Until recently Clam Point was called Harrison Square, or simply "The Square." The name commemorated William Henry Harrison's visit to Dorchester during the presidential campaign of 1840 and honored his memory, as he died of pneumonia shortly after taking office. Harrison Square referred to both the node of industrial and commercial buildings constructed around the Harrison Square Old Colony Railroad depot (1844), as well as the residential district that later became known as Clam Point. When rail service to Harrison Square was discontinued in 1957, the Harrison name began to fade from the memories of area inhabitants. The last Harrison Square Depot building was demolished around 1970.

Location
Map Detail showing Harrison Square 1850
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 Detail from 1850 Eaton map of Dorchester

another map
Map detail Harrison Square Station 1874
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 The 1874 map shows the station where the tracks make a bend near Park Street between Clayton and Beach Streets. The station was later moved to Field’s Corner, although even in 1874 there was tiny station near Fields Corner at Freeman Street.

Readers' Comments
 From Leo Sullivan, March 4, 2008

Very interesting that Harrison Sq. was named after President Harrison, not at all a local figure, I wouldn't have guessed.

I do have a bit of additional information to offer regarding the station itself. The pictured station was in fact, at least the second
on the site. It was built as part of the construction of the Shawmut Branch from Harrison Sq. to Shawmut Jct. (where the High Speed Line joined/crossed the RR from Neponset) about 1874-5. The picture comes, originally? from the 1893 history of the Old Colony RR. That station lasted until the 1911 reconstruction of the railroad which resulted in the elimination of many grade crossings and included the bridges that we see around Fields Corner today, reused by the Rapid Transit.

There was a new station at Harrison Sq, built in 1911 and I look forward to your finding a picture as, I have had no luck. After the Dorchester extension of the Rapid transit opened the stop went into steep decline. By 1931, only one train in each direction stopped there and discontinuance must have occurred soon after. I remember the floor of the station sixty years ago but, even that has disappeared, Incidentally, the floor of the Popes Hill Station is yet visible on the east side of the Quincy line.

Regards,
Leo Sullivan



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Created: April 24, 2011   Modified: April 24, 2011