Saturday, May 21, 2011

Doors Open Lowell 2011

I, of course, made it to Doors Open Lowell last weekend. It was fairly overcast all weekend, but the weather generally held, which was nice.

There were quite a few new buildings this year, and a few that were not new that I haven't seen the inside of before. I didn't get to all the buildings I would've liked to have seen, nor did I ask all the questions I would've liked to were this a longer event, but I did pick up some interesting stories. Sometimes, you need to put down the camera, take out a notepad, and talk to people. I hope to do a better job next year...

Photos after the jump

Please note that these links seem to work in Internet Explorer, but not Chrome. The links in the photo captions are typically to the Doors Open Lowell website for that building.

View of Market Street from the Old Lowell National Bank, ca 1920.

A new sculpture outside Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church, built 1906.

Window inside Holy Trinity.

A view of part of the dome inside Holy Trinity. Unlike most Catholic churches , which have floor plans of a Latin Cross (longer in one direction than the other), Greek churches tend to be shaped like - surprise - Greek crosses, which are made of equal length arms. I wish I had been less busy with my camera here and more attentive to our guide, because she knew quite a bit about the place which I neglected to memorize.

From the choir loft. The sanctuary and altar are behind the Iconostasis.

Interior of St. Patrick's Roman Catholic Church. The original church on this site dated to 1831, with this one built just a few decades later in 1854 (it's a Patrick Keely church). A large fire in 1904 lead to a re-construction of much of the church, completed in 1906.

The murals date from the 1900s re-building

A mural over the transept.

A window from the 1900s re-building.
The nave and the pipe organ in the choir loft. If you look real close by the door, you can see the statue of Saint Patrick, which I was told not to photograph as it's such a cheesy plaster statue. Patrick is my middle, baptismal, name (there is no Saint Corey), so I know what he looks like anyhow!

The entrance to the newly-renovated Appleton Mills. These buildings all date from the first decades after 1900.

A view from the restored footbridge at the Appleton Mills to the Hamilton Mills. Hamilton Canal underneath us.

Atrium inside the re-built Appleton Mills.

The wooden beams are from North Carolina. I was pleasantly surprised to find that they are pressed-together planks, and not monolithic. The posts are original - they were removed one by one, cleaned, painted, and re-installed.

Wicket gates at Lower Locks. They drain the water from a higher chamber to a lower one, then, the main gates that they seat inside are opened. These gates are still manually controlled.

Inside the Lower Locks gatehouse.

Restored lobby in the Window in the Federal Building, now part of Middlesex Community College. Originally built as a post office in the WPA days, this building served many purposes. Our tour guide told us this lobby looks like a smaller copy of a famous one in New York City. Today this building is named for F. Bradford Morse, a former congressman from Lowell.

Restored bronze entryway for the Federal Building.
And, the rest of the photos:

Doors Open Lowell 2011

Other pictures:

If you have any photos from the event you'd like to share, please do so in the comments! Like I said, I missed so much of the event...


  1. St. Jean Baptiste photos are at
    Click on the thumbnails

    A 8-9 min video will be up by Tuesday.
    George DeLuca

  2. Knowing that I could rely on you to take and post some great shots, I took minimally few shots. (Those were with my phone.) I wish the event ran later, as usual, since I had to rush there after work and missed much of it. So it goes when one works in a 24/7 service industry. As always, thanks for publicizing all of this. I'm enjoying the momentum the attention generates...

  3. Corey, my regrets that weekend was missing the Holy Trinity and St. Patricks churches. There was just not enough time! So thanks for posting the great pics! Hopefully this will be a 2.5 day event next year. There is so much to see and it seems obvious that the interest is there.

    By the way, the "cheesy" plaster Saint Patrick statue description nearly caused me to spit out my gulp of morning coffee! LOL! Now I want to go get a photo of it! ;-)