The Butler’s Pantry Like You’ve Never Seen It!

Walter S. Timmons



Hi Every person,

Ahhh… this was supposed to be a single article. However, I obtained so into the initial component that the second component will have to wait around until mid-7 days.

But, what a splendid week it’s been in Boston. The weather’s been amazing, and my wonderful son was below for a transient go to as he experienced a trombone gig.


Cale Israel trombone gigging in Boston June 2022

Gosh, he’s going to be 32 in a number of times.

Believe that it or not, I’m however operating on my kitchen area layout. I’ve frequently stated that I want it to look far more like a Victorian butler’s pantry.


What is amusing is that I’m at the moment sitting down in what employed to be this home’s butler’s pantry when the residence was finished in 1880.


Back again in the working day, when these were all solitary-household houses, the effectively-heeled household who owned the complete dwelling did have a staff, such as a butler. In 1880, apart from for the couple condominium properties, the kitchens the place the major cooking was completed was in the basement. Yes, where by my bedroom is.

Somewhere, there was a dumbwaiter that introduced the foodstuff up, and then closing preparations were being built in the butler’s pantry.

Since this home was partly seen from the dining place, it would’ve been appealing, albeit even now utilitarian. Having said that, the butler’s pantry was also the place the family’s high-quality china, silver, and other valuables ended up stored. It was the butler’s occupation to ensure that it was taken treatment of.


In the previous calendar year and a 50 percent, I’ve designed a 50 %-hearted try at finding the Original floorplan of my home’s initial ground (parlor amount).


I want to validate what I believe to be true about this house prior to it was minimize up into five separate residences.

The residences in the Back again Bay commenced all-around 1860 however, I have discovered that it wasn’t until finally 1880 that everyone believed to maintain documents of the first architectural drawings. But, not all of the households developed in 1880 and beyond have the paperwork. These are held at the Boston Public Library, I imagine.

My home was constructed by a common architect, Samuel D. Kelley.

I go through that Mr. Kelley developed more than 150 properties in Back again Bay. However, even though prolific, he was not recognized for undertaking something notably impressive or jaw-dropping. In other terms, he was an early forerunner of the custom made-house-builder-developer.


Currently, I experienced a lightbulb instant.


Given that we know that Mr. Kelley was quite significantly “phoning it in” (with a single of people newfangled devices), I figured that there are probably many properties in Boston’s Again Bay that are equivalent to my home. And, it’s possible just one of those has a flooring system.

Well, as you’ve possibly figured out, I hit paydirt extremely early though looking the listing of homes in Again Bay Houses developed by Samuel Dudley Kelley.

Dudley??? Seriously???


Samuel-d.-Kelley-architect-comm-252-basement-and-first-floor-plans-1880 - butler
I’m presuming these are not construction drawings. Nevertheless, if they are, it would describe why some of the initial features in my household are disconcertingly off-heart.

In the over example, this property has a bonus basement (garden) prepare. It is almost identical to my residence, other than it’s the reverse. As envisioned, that awkward doorway to my bed room, which demands to get moved, was an unique entrance into what was initially the kitchen area.

Samuel d. Kelley architect comm-252-basement-and-first-floor-plans-1880 reverse floor plan
No dilemma. I can flip the graphic.


The only variation here is a insignificant one with the placement of the again staircase and the configuration of the main staircase. Nevertheless, I found a further home, also in reverse, that is even closer to mine, besides there is no bay window in the dining area.


Kelley architect - marl-230-first-floor-plan-1880 reverse

The only other change is that the back again staircase really runs beneath the primary staircase. The place the stairs are in these two homes is where my 2nd rest room is positioned. On the other hand, it would make feeling to place the stairs where these are for direct obtain to the butler’s pantry.

But, wherever the reception area is, my kitchen area is situated.

And, there is the huge doorway, formerly leading to the eating area, but is now my dwelling area. The home windows are the very same, too.


For comparison, under are a couple of other ground strategies by architects who are not phoning it in and are regarded for their excellent work.


305 Commonwealth Ave-first-and-second-peabody-and-stearns-188 - butler

Higher than is 305 Commonwealth Ave., concluded in 1887. The architectural agency was Peabody and Stearns. Remember to take note that in this case, the butler’s pantry was referred to as the “china closet.” And certainly, it also incorporated a vault.

One particular more.


306 Dartmouth St-peabody-stearns-first-floor

Peabody and Stearns also intended 306 Dartmouth Road. It is a corner mansion that has not long ago been likely by a huge renovation. I took some photos of it past spring and the beautiful greenhouse. You can see the total set of architectural strategies listed here.

As you can see, they are pretty fragile and I fully grasp that they are offered at the Boston Public Library. I think a person wants to make an appointment to see them, but we are not authorized to touch them.



By the way, I just took a glimpse at that submit from previous spring, and when you have a possibility, be sure to examine out 169 Commonwealth Ave.


I walked previous it the other evening, and my eyeballs practically fell out of my head, due to the fact the architecture is not to be believed and the kitchen is lovely too!

Maureen O’Hara was also my realtor. She’s brilliant! And so is Wendy Oleksiak!

Let us zero in on that beautiful pantry at 306 Dartmouth Street.


306 Dartmouth St. Butler


Once again, it is known as the china closet.


306 Dartmouth Street Boston, MA Spring 2022

Coincidentally, I took yet another photograph of 306 Dartmouth Avenue two months in the past when the early spring trees bloomed.

If you’re intrigued, please read through about 306 Dartmouth Road which is ideal all around the corner from me. This is a website link to it in Back Bay Properties. They even have a picture from 1875 showing the recently constructed house and vacant lots all close to it!


Speaking of intestine renovations, a few of weeks back, I was on my way to a gathering and walking down Comm Ave.


haha. You are not permitted to touch the exterior of our Boston Back again Bay Beauties, but evidently, it is ok to disembowel them.

I experienced to do a bit of sleuthing, but I did determine out that these addresses are 260 and 262 Commonwealth Ave.

260 Comm Ave via Back Bay Houses

Previously mentioned is an image via Again Bay Homes just before their innards were extracted.


On a hunch, I just experienced to check out.


And, of course, Samuel Dudley Kelley was without a doubt the initial architect. This is not the 1st time one particular of his structures received strike with a sledgehammer.


he sisters 128-130 Commonwealth AveBoston Christmas 2021


Variety 128 and 130 not only experienced an exterior facelift, but the within also experienced a intestine renovation. (There is a charming daytime shot in this submit before I moved to Boston.) Nonetheless, I really do not assume they took down all of the partitions when they redid the “sisters” about 110 decades ago.

Like the title said, the butler’s pantry like you have never observed it. All of them today are in plan see. But, I guarantee to share some actual rooms.

Aspect II with some truly breathtaking butler’s pantries is coming Wednesday. And, it’s possible another shock or two.


PS: Remember to examine out the freshly current Incredibly hot Gross sales!


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