Norwood Post Office (photo LLKearney)

Post Office and Post Office Square.  Site of the current Post office was where the Everett School was located.  The Guild School was located across the street on Guild St. The Guild School taught lower grades and the Everett School was for upper elementary and Junior High. The High School was located on Beacon Street behind the present Library. The Guild School was destroyed by fire in 1929. The Everett School was demolished in 1930.  The land was left vacant until the residents of Norwood, after much discussion regarding a site, voted to build the post office on the site of the Everett School. Designed by William Upham, it was dedicated in 1934.  Before 1934 the post office in Norwood moved from store fronts in the Village Hall, Wheelock Bldg., the Bigelow Block, the Talbot Bldg., and the Norwood Association block.

The Everett School (Norwood Historical Society collection)
Anna R. Ellis (1877-1945) (Norwood Historical Society collection)

In 1886 Anna Ellis graduated from High School and took a temporary summer job under Postmaster William Wallace, 49 years later she retired as Postmistress. During her time, she also served as Asst. Postmaster/Mistress and when the current facility was dedicated in 1934 it was under her supervision as the Postmaster Mr. Mullvehill was sick. Norwood was also the first and only post office in Massachusetts to have the United States Postal Savings System. It was formed by the government in January of 1911 and was much used by farmers and immigrants. They distrusted banks and their money in the USPSS was backed by the government, not Wall St, and gave a 2% interest. Their money was safe during the Great Depression. It remained in operation until 1967.

Postcard of Guild Square Park, circa 1910. Showing the band stand.

South Norwood had their own satellite post office. First located in Abdallah’s store, then when Prohibition was repealed, and liquor was licensed to be sold in Nick’s Package store it was moved to the Balch Pharmacy on the corner of St. George Ave and Washington Street in the late 50’s/early 60’s all postal operations were consolidated to the current location and the post office was expanded.

The Marine Memorial, Guild Square Park (photo LLKearney)

Guild Square. This was opposite the Guild School, located where the new Talbot Block is now, and the Everett School, now the post office.  The square featured a bandstand, where local bands and musicians gave concerts. In 1903 the Norwood Old Home Week Association dedicated a stone monument to the South Dedham volunteers that participated in the Siege of Louisbourg, one of the battles between the English and their colonial members against the French and their Native American allies. Before this dedication, the land was owned by Moses Guild, brother of Aron Guild. Moses also served in 1775. Around 1906 the son of Moses Guild, also named Moses, built a large barn that housed a freight hauling business. Across from the barn, where Walpole and Washington meet was the Guild House.  It was rumored that the Marquis de Lafayette spent a night in the house in 1825 on his way to the dedication of the Bunker Hill Monument.   The Guild Barn around 1843 was converted to a grist mill, a playing card factory and eventually into a tenement house for Irish immigrants, The barn was torn down in 1911 and the bandstand was erected. It seems more likely that Guild Street was named for Moses Guild since he owned all the land on both sides, as opposed to his brother Aron Guild. The squarer is also home to the Grange Christmas tree of 1935, the more recent monuments to the Korean War Veterans, and the Marine Corps monument. The bandstand was demolished?? And benches were installed.  The Talbot Block which extended around the corner onto Washington Street had business on the ground floor and apartment on the top exactly as today. Some of the businesses were a variety store, Andy’s Jewelers, and Martin’s the fabric, button, notions store. One of the other memorial Monuments in the square is the Norfolk County Marine Corps League monument.  Norwood native Nader Kalliel was commandant of the League when in 1954 the rotary in Dedham was dedicated to the Marine Corps League as a memorial for all Marines of Norfolk County.  Mr. Kalliel then started a fundraising effort to have a memorial statue erected to commemorate the Marines.  Finally in 1957, this statue was made of Barre VT granite by Ernest Wood of Wood Memorials of Norwood, and it was placed at the rotary.  During subsequent years neglect overtook the circle and the statue and the rotary was being redesigned. In the early 90s, after Mr. Kalliel’s death the statue found a new home here in Guild Square Park.

To learn more about Anna Ellis — see Wonderful Women of Norwood

To learn more — See This Day in Norwood

Closing Everett School

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