Bouvier Building, A Structure Known by Many Names in the Past

April 29, 2017
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While the Bouvier Building in modern times has been known mostly as a jewelry store in Everett Square, in the past it has had any number of names and uses, and is listed on the Massachusetts Historical Commission (MHC) as having architectural and historic significance.

Architecturally, the Bouvier was one of the first and only examples of a mansard-style building in the commercial area, and one of the oldest buildings in the square.

“This was the first masonry block (building) to be erected in Everett Square
, and typical of mansard-roofed blocks being erected in commercial
 areas during this period,” the MHC record. “It is also the second oldest building
 in the square, pre-dated only by the First Congregational Church. Though altered…the segmentally arched window openings trimmed with granite and angled brick courses remain. The (mansard) roof still has its original patterned slates, some of
the few surviving in the city and an important part of the building’s design.”

The building is also significant to the City as it was the location of the City’s first public library from 1878 until the Parlin Library was built in 1895.

The building was constructed in 1877 and designed by George Wallis. Wallis is significant to Everett as he was a local resident who designed many blocks and houses in Everett. Of note, he designed the form Everett Savings Bank building and 440 Broadway.

The Bouvier Building was originally known as the Whittier & Dearborn Building. The first owners of the building were Alvah Whittier and Daniel Dearborn, and they sold choice groceries and provisions.

Another original tenant was the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, which in the 1870s was one of the largest secret association in the world. Later, the Odd Fellow bought the building, and it became known as the Odd Fellows Building.