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Northshore Home Summer 2018

Northshore Home magazine highlights the best in architectural design, new construction and renovations, interiors, and landscape design.

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Page 99 of 131

98 SUMMER 2018 INTERIOR DESIGN PLANNING & RENOVATION 978-741-1134 In 1855, Cyrus Wakefield formed the Wakefield Rattan Com- pany, settling his huge manufacturing operation in South Reading. As demand accelerated over the next two decades, the company prospered and became the premier asset of the local economy, and in time employed over 1,000 townspeople. With his largesse, Wakefield donated land and $30,000 to build a new town hall. Immediately, a town meeting voted to rename the town Wakefield in his honor, sealing immortality for his fam- ily name. However, because of additional elaborate and expensive features (up to $100,000 worth) not in the original plan, a building committee decided to "leave the erection of the building to the liberal donor," records show. In 1873, Cyrus Wakefield died suddenly, and his nephew, who deliberately changed his name to Cyrus Wakefield II, took over management of the business. By then, Heywood Brothers & Com- pany was an established giant in manufactured wood furniture based in Gardner, and it engaged the Wakefield Company in a fierce rivalry during the 1870s and '80s. Finally, in 1897, the two companies merged into Heywood Brothers & Wakefield Company, expanding in the United States and in Europe. Tastes are forever changing, and by the 1930s interest in wicker had waned, but it never really died out. Something about wicker's delicate intricacy, airy charm, whimsy, and durability, coupled with its fabulous history, eventually attracted renewed apprecia- tion. Other revivals followed in the 1960s and '70s, and yet another For additional photographs, visit + Inspire

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