You may have stumbled upon this old photo of Bartlett Place off Salem Street recently. That’s because it was the featured image for the presentation by Jerome Krase about America’s Little Italies that was organized by the North End Historical Society and the North End Branch Library back in September.

This image is a great example of the change we have seen in this street over the years – from restaurant hangout, to vacant alley, to the newly renovated area today:

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Comment below your memories of Jennie’s or Bartlett Place!

Tune in each week to view our featured neighborhood photo from back in the day! Submit your historical photos using our Submit a Post form or tag @northend.waterfront on Instagram. Please include a caption or story telling about your photo.

See past historic neighborhood photo posts.


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7 COMMENTS

  1. Lauren, The well known local restauranteur, Dom Capossela, bought Jennies from the Balliro sisters who lived in Bartlett Place. Dom and his very talented wife were among the first people to bring traditional North End, red sauce Italian food into the new upscale era. Dom’s restaurant became wildly successful and moved to Commercial St where Billy Tse’s is now located. I only ate at Dom’s a couple of times because I couldn’t afford the prices but the food was outstanding.

  2. For awhile I hung around in Jennie’s restaurant with some of my friends. The pizza was cheap and Jennie and her daughter? daughter-in-law? loved having us there. We played the jukebox and danced in the narrow aisle almost every day after school back in the early 60’s. Great memories.

  3. My name is Leah Miller, formerly Leah Monteforte. I’m responding to your post about Jennie’s Restaurant, 10 Bartlett Place. The comments made by Nick Dello Russo and Diane are completely inaccurate. Nick said that Dom bought the restaurant from the Balliro sisters. Dom leased the restaurant from my parents, Alexander and Florence Monteforte, who owned the restaurant from 1962 until the property was sold by my mother in 2009. For the years that Dom leased the restaurant, he was repeatedly delinquent in his rent to my parents and caused them extreme stress and anguish. When Dom died, his wife left owing my mother thousands of dollars, and the restaurant in terrible shape. My mother was a widower, very sick with heart disease, and had to deal with years of disrespect from him and his wife. My father built that restaurant out of the slum that Jennie and her daughter made it. They were drunkards and would come down from upstairs, where they lived, and bother my father’s customers, while he was trying to build a better clientele. There were seven booths upstairs, and there were people lined up on Salem street waiting to get in to enjoy my father’s meticulously prepared food. He drove around the North End handpicking everything to make sure he only served the very best. He had specialty dishes that were sold out on the weekends in an hour. People would call on the phone to order his specialties, to be sure they got one when they arrived. The restaurant was enlarged by my father’s two hands, building a beautiful downstairs room.

    There was a fire in 1979, completely destroying the inside of the restaurant. It was gutted. My father rebuilt it himself and reopened with just as much success as he had before the fire. My parents bought the restaurant from my mother’s brother, William Balliro, who bought it from Jennie, and he owned it for only one year before he sold it to my parents. We all worked there as a family and spent many hours building the name and reputation as a high-quality Italian restaurant with reasonable prices. My father was so successful that he opened another restaurant in Salem, Mass called Monteforte’s Italian Cuisine.

    I’m appalled about the inaccurate information that was posted about Jennie’s and wanted to set the record straight. My parents were wonderful, hardworking people and sacrificed for years to build their business. This is what should be remembered about Jennie’s.

  4. Thank you for the clarification, Leah. I ate in Jennie’s restaurant and it was every bit as good as you report.
    You will be interested to learn that Dom isn’t dead. He is alive and well and still lives in the neighborhood.
    His younger sister passed away a few years ago but Dom is still with us.

  5. This information is completely appalling that Dom is alive. His wife not only lied to my mother to get out of paying what they owed to her, but they also left her to deal with their mayhem without any notification. I would bet anything that their conscious has not once bothered them in all these years. My parents were wonderful people and did not deserve what was given to them by those people. They should be completely ashamed of themselves.

  6. Marcello died, not Dom. Marcello was Doms partner and the restaurant may have even been in his name. Or at least that is my understanding, which isn’t that informed.

    This thread confuses me – I thought Dom was in Sharon doing a new restaurant. He was great – always loved chatting with him. Wish he were still in the hood. Many good memories with Dom.

  7. I ran into Dom at the Whole Foods market on Cambridge St a few months ago. He keeps himself fit and writes a daily blog, existentialautotrip.com.
    He was always a character but never dull.

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