Edith C. Baker School // 1937

At a time when many public school buildings around Boston were designed in the Art Deco or early Modern styles, the Edith C. Baker School in South Brookline went back to basics and represents a nod back to Colonial era design. The whitewashed red brick building was designed and built in phases as the neighborhood surged in population, tied in with the re-emergence of the economy after the Great Depression. The opening of the West Roxbury Parkway in 1919 and the Hammond Pond Parkway in 1932, both precipitated subdivision of the farms in South Brookline for residential development. The first section was completed in 1937 (what is shown in the photo) by plans from the local architecture firm of Kilham, Hopkins and Greeley, who also designed an addition just a year later for the un-forecasted growth in the neighborhood. More additions were added in the decades following WWII, thankfully just as additions and not a scraping of the site which seems to be all the rage now. The school was named as a tribute to Edith C. Baker, a longtime member of the Brookline School Committee from 1900 to her death in 1942.

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