Sunday, February 27, 2011

UPDATE: What a Dump

From Dave Brigham:

I love the immediacy of the Internet. Not long after I originally posted this, one of our loyal followers pointed me toward this web page because she suspected this building is the old O'Hara Waltham Dial Company. One look at the picture there, and I knew she was right. A big Backside thanks to Shuko, proprietress of the wonderful Creepy-chusetts, Strange-chusetts photo blog!

Built in 1897, the building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1989. I'm glad to know that one of my original guesses about this building -- that it was either automotive- or watchmaking-related -- turned out to be correct.

Rumford Ave., Waltham #3

Rumford Ave., Waltham #2

I know a guy who lives nearby and he said a developer bought the place a few years back with plans to build condos. I'm not sure if the developer was going to save the building. It's on Rumford Avenue, within sniffing distance of the Newton town dump, so I get the feeling nothing will happen until the housing market catches a big fire.

Rumford Ave., #4

Rumford Ave., Waltham #1


  1. Hi, Dave. I'm a fan of the gang.

    I think I might know what the building is. It's either "O'Hara Waltham Dial Company" or "Waltham Screw Company Factory".

    You mentioned the building may be related to watch making, so my guess is O'Hara. If that rings a bell, please check out the following link:

    What an amazing place. I should check that out, too!

  2. Shuko,

    Wow! You got it exactly right with O'Hara Waltham Dial Company." I'd seen that name in doing Google searches, but couldn't confirm it was right until I saw the picture on the MACRIS site. I'm going to amend my post.

    Thanks! Definitely check the place out. I'd love to hop the fence and explore more, but haven't done it yet.

  3. I work across the street from here in what was the old screw building. Thanks for the info.

    I'm surprised you haven't done Fernald Center in Waltham/Belmont. Seems right up you alley. Be prepared to spend half a day.

  4. Shauna -- I've long wanted to snoop around Fernald, so now that you've put the idea in my head, I'll check it out. I know that there were residents there up until fairly recently, so I wasn't sure what the deal was as far as access. Have you ever been on the grounds?

    1. Hi Dave and Shauna,

      I've been to Fernald by my car a few years ago. I saw a few abandoned red brick buildings and newer residential colonies. I wasn't sure about how legit my access was so just drove through.

      I'm very curious about the place as well. Since I live in Western Mass now, if you could cover the place I'll be thrilled.

      PS: for Fernald, read "the State Boys Rebellion" by Michael D'Antonio. Very powerful book.

  5. Shuko and Shauna -- I'll drive through and see what happens.

  6. I drove past two Fernald entrances: one is blocked and the other appeared to have an entry gate you had to pass through to get in there. So I didn't explore further. On the plus side, I checked out the nearby Beaver Brook Reservation and took some nice pics of an old barn.