0.9 min readBy Published On: August 27th, 2023Categories: Features8 Comments on Really Old School Southie – 1898 South Boston

Boy, have times changed.  The entire landscape of South Boston transformed from a more rural feel in 1898 to the bustling and vibrant urban neighborhood of 2023!

Here are some photos taken back in August 1898 posted on Boston City Archives on Instagram early this week!

Image 1 (above): D. H. Geer & Son, 448 Swett Street, with a sign reading “Honey, Maple Syrup, and Bees Wax”

Image 2: 23-25 Boston Street showing wood frame houses, trees, and a woman in a doorway

Image 3: Wood frame house and possible barn on Ellery Street

Note from Boston City Archives: The date on the photographs is reversed and should read “98” and not “89”

Editor’s noteMy grandparents, JamesDahill and Julia Kenneally, came to South Boston around this time from Ireland.  My grandfather, also James “Jim” Dahill, was born here in 1905. There is a park named in his honor at Castle Island. The James F. Dahill Harborview Park leads out to the fish pier at the end of the green space behind Sullivan’s. 


  1. Mike Thomas August 27, 2023 at 4:25 pm - Reply

    With a humble heart, I retract my earlier critique of your Southie girl status.
    You seem to be a root of our great home town that can’t be denied.
    Good for you and your family!
    Get more historic pictures out there @ “digital commonwealth”
    Good work, and good luck.

  2. Kevin Conroy August 27, 2023 at 5:39 pm - Reply

    Where was Swett Street?

    • Maureen Dahill August 28, 2023 at 7:48 am - Reply

      It was near where the South Bay Mall currently is. That neck of the woods.

  3. Bob Allen August 31, 2023 at 2:16 pm - Reply

    Thank you for your work keeping up Southie history and current events.
    My second grade teacher at the OH Perry was Miss Julie Dahill.
    “Empty barrels make the most noice “ was a frequent reminder to some of us!
    When anyone asks where I’m from it’s always “originally from Southie “!

    • Maureen Dahill August 31, 2023 at 5:04 pm - Reply

      Wow! What a small world! Thanks for reaching out!

  4. Joseph C Lubin September 1, 2023 at 12:23 pm - Reply

    would love to see 546 east Broadway. where I was born.

  5. Mary Gregorio September 3, 2023 at 12:52 pm - Reply

    Maureen I attended many meetings with Jim Dahill and his heart was always for Southie☘️
    Love your paper❤️

  6. KennyD September 4, 2023 at 12:48 am - Reply

    I’m Kenny D and i’m wondering why you never post my comments.
    Are they to conservative for you ? I didn’t know you were a liberal !,!!

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