Northshore Magazine

Northshore April 2016

Northshore magazine showcases the best that the North Shore of Boston, MA has to offer.

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 157 of 180

155 Bill Peterson stands outside the abandoned house, which is still structurally sound. as much as possible, without cars parked in the driveway or neatly trimmed hedges." Plum Island resident and Save the Pink House co-founder Joseph adds: "An empty house set in the landscape of such uncommon beau- ty certainly invites the imagina- tion—and curiosity." Joseph recent- ly toured the house with Peterson and a local builder, and determined that the building is structurally sound—encouraging news for those who want to preserve it. "Simply put: We tear things down too often," Joseph says. "Meaningful things. Things with history. There would be no Grand Central Station in New York had Jackie Kennedy not stepped in to save it." The Pink House, said to be built in 1925 in purposeful isolation as part of a divorce settlement, may not have the grandeur of, well, Grand Central, but it does inspire people to wax poetic. "Nothing short of magic happens to the color of it, reflec- tion in its windows, [the] shape in the shadows it casts [hourly] from morning into night," says Joseph. "It is literally ever-changing." It's likely that the sheer pinkness of the house is a large part of the drive to preserve it, acknowledges Parker River's Peterson, and it's been that color for as long as anyone can remember. Former resident Loring says the house was pink when she moved in as a small child, and her family kept repainting it the same hue. "It just couldn't be imag- ined in another color," says Loring. Loring has been surprised to see her childhood home in the spotlight. While the house had its charms, it was also rife with chal- lenges. The property never had fresh running water, so the family showered and cleaned with brack- ish water, fetching drinking water at the old Newburyport fire station (now the Firehouse Center for the Arts). And occasionally very high tides would leave the house cut off from the road. "The flood would come up and surround the house. We lost more than a few cars," Lor- ing says, before they wised up and parked across the street on higher ground during flood tides. With the Save the Pink House group only in its nascent stages at press time, no formal plans for the building are on the table, but Pe- terson hopes that a solution can be reached this spring that will please everyone. While former resident Loring wouldn't say what she'd like to see become of her childhood home, she is glad it's not up to her. "I adore its physicality—I adore the marshes, the smell, the fog, the sun, the sky, all of that was pretty amazing," Loring says. "But it was a very challenging piece of property." photograph by Eric Roth

Articles in this issue

view archives of Northshore Magazine - Northshore April 2016