Pawtucket? What’s that?

October 12, 2009

Slater Mill, Pawtucket, where the Industrial Revolution began!

Slater Mill, Pawtucket, where the Industrial Revolution began!

P1180731We’ve had interests in the Providence, RI area since 1997, when our daughter Robyn moved there to a house in 1997, as she began working on her Master’s in Landscape Architecture at RISD. Pawtucket is the last town north of Providence before you cross the Massachusetts border, and though we’d been through it several times (usually on our way to the nearest Home Depot store just north in Attleboro, MA), we hadn’t paid it much attention. Then, our younger daughter Heidi recently bought a condo in Pawtucket, so during our “work break” here we spent lots of time in Pawtucket for a change. Sunday, our last day in town, we visited Slater Mill, shown above. From the caption, you can see that this place was truly the origin of the Industrial Revolution; Pawtucket has definitely made its mark on the world, its place in history. This photo of the Blackstone River running by shows how beautiful a day it was:

The Blackstone River, as it runs near Slater Mill, Pawtucket

The Blackstone River, as it runs near Slater Mill, Pawtucket

A little real estate portfolio from the area with which we’re very familiar: Here’s a photo of Robyn’s home in Providence. It was originally built in 1887; its value has risen since it was purchased in 1997, and it’s still “above water” despite the recent local economic crunch (Rhode Island ranks as one of the nation’s highest unemployment areas).

Robyn's house in Providence

Robyn's house in Providence

By contrast, Heidi bought this condo recently on a foreclosure sale from a bank, at a price that wouldn’t even make the down payment on the homes of most you gentle readers. It was built in 1959, and surprisingly appears to be pretty solidly built. For our “work break,” we spent a lot of time fixing it up; Jane is our family’s master painter, I’m the wirer and general fixer-upper. Between the contribution of the floor refinishing (Stuart the cat’s pawprints notwithstanding), painting all rooms and trim, fixing up the wiring and fixtures, what began as a “house” ended up as a “home” and daughter Heidi, who also worked very hard in the process, is very happy with the result. Here’s the exterior:

Heidi's home in Pawtucket, RI

Heidi's home in Pawtucket, RI

We started our last day in Providence/Pawtucket with a nice family brunch at the CAV restaurant in Providence. We were joined by some good friends of Robyn and their son Jacque. Here’s a family photo of us with Jacque:

The Reeds: John, Jane, Robyn, Heidi (and Jacque)

The Reeds: John, Jane, Robyn, Heidi (and Jacque)

We left Rhode Island and headed south today; I’m writing this installment from the home of our friends Skip and Gretchen in Drexel Hill, PA, a bit west of Philadelphia. It’s a good thing I have a Phillies baseball cap in this area! Tomorrow the 4 of us are heading up to Chesapeake Bay; who knows what wonders await us? Follow on, faithful blogees!

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5 Responses to “Pawtucket? What’s that?”

  1. Gerry said

    Wonderful photos, especially of Heidi and Robyn, etc. What a wonderful trip for you both. God bless you Sis

  2. Don McDonald said

    I am happy and continue to learn ever-so-much in my proud role as a “faithful blogee” to the Reed blogazzette. FBMcD

  3. Rhys said

    Looks good. Will you be coming through South Carolina? Columbia’s worth a visit :d

    • Hey Rhys, thanks for the comment. We’ve actually seen some of S.C. before, and this trip we’re endeavoring to go to places we haven’t been, as much as possible. But I don’t think we’ll be avoiding the state.

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