Boston Parks and Recreation Department is doing some research on the area of the Gassy (DeFilippo Park) by the Flights that is now a dog park. As part of that process, City Archives found these fascinating images from the early 1970’s.

Check out the psychedelic mural on the Brinks Garage wall and the old style tot lot. Also notice the graffiti on the walls of the Flights that would be immediately removed today, especially the swastika.

In this image from 1970-1971, the Gassy is paved over in preparation for the installation of sports courts. The brick wall is in place along Snow Hill Street with the characteristic North End buildings in the background before roof additions but complete with laundry lines. Notice the door leading under the Flights steps, used perhaps for restrooms or storage.

Do you have any vintage photos of DeFilippo Playground and the Flights area after the gas tank was removed? If so, they may be helpful as the City prepares the Flights area for a more permanent dog park. Email your old photos to info@northendwaterfront.com.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. The door under the flights was used for storage. It was dark inside and had a musty smell. There was a custodian (I use that word because I really don’t know what else to call him) who would show up, only during the summer months, to unlock the door. Swings were stored in there. When we, the neighborhood kids, would see him coming, we would run to help carry the swings to the second flight where he would put up the swings. He would only stay for a short time, then return, and we would have to get off the swings so he could take them down. We didn’t help carry them back because we wanted to keep swinging. The only other equipment up there was a slide. Now, that was back in the late 1940’s and early 50’s.

  2. miss the old Gassy. played off ground tag in the “little gassy”. those who hung around in there know what I mean. under the stairs became a hangout(club) that the older kids used to hang around in. they would let us hang around with them. they called it “the Shack”… that was in the 70’s. rollerskate hockey. pimple ball. softball. scatter, relievio. snowball fights in the winter. riding home made scooters w/ peach boxes 2×4’s and old roller skates. we never stayed home. now, kids don’t have,or need an imagination. the computer took that away…

    • When visiting relatives in the NE, going back about 50 years, I remember on Commercial Streetcobblestone steps on the right side of the street if you were walking in the opposite direction of North station. What is or was at the top of those stairs ???

  3. IN THE 50s I REMEMBER WATCHING GREAT SOFTBALL GAMES THERE ,TIGERS,PANTHERS, CHRISTY CLUB ETC. ON BROKEN CONCRETE FLOOR,IT WAS BETTTER THAN WATCHING THE RED FLOPS,THE NEW COMERS TO OUR NORTH END WILL NEVER KNOW THE HISTORY OF THE GASSY AND THE OLD NORTH END ,,TO BAD FOR THEM

  4. The North End is all gone. Outsiders have taken over and now look at it.Some places and streets are filthy,people are being mugged, robbed ,homes broken into, drugs are rampant. It is gone and will NEVER return as before. It’s a real shame. Most of the people who moved into the so called North End are arrogant, no regards to anything.All they know is the stupid I-phone and don’t care about anything else. The old Italians that use to live in the North End were respectful, sensitive ,loving ,home body people. Look at what we have now.People who don’t care about anything but themselves.What a shame society has turned out to be!!! I don’t see any good coming out of all this…and this isn’t only the North End…it is all over the United States . People are turning into animals, no love for anyone or any thing.

  5. I was not born in the North End, but spent 4 years of my life there when I went to JB. I appreciate all the areas I got so familiar with like this playground. It was a wonderful time and still reminisce when I return for visits.

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