The History of 13 St. Louis Street, shared by Megan Humphrey
According to Surveyor Karen Czaikowski, my house was built in 1894 by U. J. Beauregard, a local carpenter, who built this home for himself. The Gravels were a French-Canadian family who settled in “Little Canada” after purchasing the house from Beauregard. Albert and Eva had 10 children and others periodically traveled from Montreal to live here and work in Burlington or Winooski. That created a very full house with over 12 people in a small 3-bedroom house and an outhouse in back. Albert added a Bungaloid wrap-around porch in about 1930.
Daughter Margaret Gravel and another sister moved back home to take care of their father until he passed away at over 100 years old. When I purchased the house in 1994, Margaret had lived here until recent medical issues had resulted in her going to a nursing home.
As only the third owner of my home, I love hearing stories about the family that lived here for the 100 years prior. Sons Bill and Clarke shared lots of tales: they played croquet in the backyard, went sledding down into the Intervale, worked for a Jewish man who delivered food from a horse and wagon throughout the neighborhood, made their own wine during Prohibition, attended St. Joseph’s Church, talked of the many horses and flies everywhere, skated in the park during the winter and played ball there in the summer. The kids worked in the Winooski mills, a tough job with long hours and rats.
The youngest son, Clarke, was the only child to go to college. The entire family pitched him in to help him out financially to make his dream come true. Clarke became a lawyer and was then a partner in Gravel & Shea for many years.
Each time we turn over the garden, we find marbles, piece of a pipe, a horseshoe, or an old metal toy. It reminds us of the people who lived, loved, worked, and played on this spot long before we were here.
Two short films by Vanessa Anderson:
An interview with long-time Cedar St. resident Jeannie Waltz about her experience in the Old North End, including the story of Stu MaGowan decided to paint all of his properties in bright colors.
Moments from the 2018 Ramble, an Old North End community festival that takes place on the last Saturday of every July.