Sharon Guzik 0

Preserve the Haskell-Cutter House

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To the Medford City Council:

We, the undersigned Medford residents, ask that the City Council vote in support of the creation of a single-house Local Historic District for the Haskell-Cutter house, located at 16 Foster Court. This unique building is under imminent threat of demolition, and we urge you to act quickly to save it for the benefit of the entire Medford community. The many compelling reasons to preserve this property include the following:

  • The Haskell-Cutter house was built in the very early 19th century, in the Federal Period;
  • It is one of only three examples of a Federal-era Cape Cod house in Medford still standing and retains exceptional integrity for its age;
  • Past owners and inhabitants of the property had ties to Medford’s shipbuilding industry;
  • The house is located on Foster Court, which led from “Ship Street” (now Riverside Ave) to the shipyards on the Mystic River;
  • Foster Court was named for James T. Foster, who ran the last shipyard to operate in Medford’s shipbuilding industry;
  • The house was converted to a two-family in the mid-19th C, when it housed shipbuilders and others in the industry;
  • The house meets criteria to be recommended for the National Historic Register;
  • The lot on which the house stands could accommodate both the preservation and reuse of the historic house, as well as further new development by its owner.

The small number of historic homes left in Medford is decreasing rapidly. Properties are under threat of demolition in order to construct buildings of 2 to 10 or more units. The result of these losses has been the erosion of the historic landscape and the addition of disruptive new elements into the streetscapes of our city.

The Haskell-Cutter House represents an important chapter of Medford history. The Council has the opportunity to save an irreplaceable piece of the city's historical record, which once gone, is irretrievable.

The Haskell-Cutter house should be preserved. We urge you to support the creation of a single-house Historic District for the property.

For more information on the house: Haskell-Cutter House

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